The Art of Juggling

Guest Blogger: Jess Boyle, Development Manager

I learned how to juggle when I was about ten at a summer holiday activity club. I just really took to it straight away. I bought some cheap balls and carried on practicing, and it became my ‘party trick’. I lost interest somewhat in my teenage years, but started to juggle again at Uni. I had lots of different balls, bean bags and hoops, and if I didn’t have them with me would juggle fruit or whatever else I could get my hands on.

There is something meditative about juggling – just focussing on the balls and blocking everything else out. There is also a rhythm with it too, almost like a dance, moving in time with the balls. You get a real sense of achievement from juggling without dropping the balls, or mastering a new trick. And it’s really good exercise too!

Some juggling tips:

  • Start with one ball, just throwing it up in the air from one hand to the other until you feel you have some control over the ball – how high it will go, where it will land etc.
  • Bring in a second ball. Hold one ball in each hand. Throw the first ball into the air and as it starts to drop, this is when you throw your second into the air your hand is then empty ready to catch the first ball. After you’ve caught the first ball throw the second over to your other hand and repeat. Practice this until you feel comfortable you have mastered it.
  • Bring in the third ball. The point at which you throw each ball (apart from the first!) is just as one is about to descend into your hand. If three balls has you flummoxed, just go back to two for a bit to get your confidence.
  • Practice, practice, practice!
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If you want to see some great juggling in action check out Sigma presented by Gandini Juggling in partnership with Seeta Patel. Find out why our programming team are bringing this stunning performance to Déda this November...

"When I heard about the collaboration between Seeta Patel and Gandini Juggling, I was instantly excited to see the show! In my younger years I trained as a percussionist (aka drummer!) and I have developed a love for dance that has strong music presence, that is rhymical & most of all exciting to watch. I have always really loved watching the intricate rhythmic patterns in Bharatanatyam dance and other south Asian dance forms which I feel really have that percussive presence.

It felt like a really exciting combination merging Juggling with Bharatanatyam, as both require such precise rhythmic placement. When I watched the performance I was blown away by the merging of the two of forms and how amazingly well they complimented each. I could see the unison patterns emerging which made me drum on my legs the whole way through the performance (sorry if you sat next to me)!"

Phil Hargreaves, Creative Producer




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