Monday, December 17, 2012

Helsinki Zouk Festival - 2012

Mid November + Helsinki... Not the best combination. But a great way to get your mind off of the cold rain and darkness is to dance your toes sore! The zouk festivals in Helsinki have been quite small but this November we had the biggest one - the 4th Helsinki Zouk Festival Nov 16-18 gathered lots of international dancers to our windy city!

There were two days of workshops with visiting teachers from Brazil, Leonardo Neves & Layssa Liebscher, and from Spain, Daniel & Leticia Estevez Lopez, as well as our resident teachers Freddy Marinho & Andressa Castelhano (BRA) and Soile Vedenpää (FIN). The workshops were pretty packed but the mood was great and I think the teachers succeeded well in accommodating the various levels of students attending the classes. Restaurant La Bamba and Etnofitness dance studio in Sörnäinen served as the workshop spaces - and the festival full pass included a hearty lunch and snacks!

The intermediate workshops were packed

One of Leo & Layssa's final festivals - their dance partnership ended in Dec 2012
There were some touching demos at the end of the workshops, such as the Sunday's Freddy & Andressa's demo and Saturday's Leo & Layssa's demo.

The parties were at Hotel Vantaa - yes, that's outside Helsinki but the space was quite good for the amount of people. DJ Big Zouk from Spain was taking care of the music and the floor was packed all through the night. There were only four shows during the festival, all on Saturday night. I do enjoy shows but it was nice that there weren't too many; more time to dance!! If you want to see a crazy zouk show you should definitely check out Daniel & Leticia's piece.

Freddy and Andressa's show

Leticia and Daniel do their best to entertain the crowd!

All the teachers and performers!

The last songs were played around 3am on Friday and 3:30 on Saturday. I had a great time at the parties and was happy I could join also the final party on Sunday evening, back at the workshop space in the city. I hope we will have many more zouk festivals like this in Helsinki in the future!!

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