Archive for August, 2012

Me and Lisa on the TV

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

This is how close it became after my error!  I am in red and Lisa is in black.  By making an error at least i made a cool photo with both of us at the same point on the course!sally-and-lisa-red-or-black.jpg

The television show

Saturday, August 18th, 2012

If you are reading this and are in the UK it is possible you may have just watched a television show with me handstand walking.

It was a race between me and Lisa who I work with in my duo act.  I was winning and then I made an error right at the end, I think I thought I had won before I had won, I accidentally touched the black area going up the slope the first time and didn’t know if I was allowed to or not, I lost my focus, lost my flow, and kaboom i was a gonner.  I was so frustrated at myself, I do not like losing and am admittedly a bad loser – not through hatred that the other person won, but through frustration at myself for not fulfilling my potential.  I hate failing and usually if i do fail i just try again until i succeed.  If I had my way I wouldn’t let me losing air, but it was going to air no matter what and for the producers i made the race more interesting as I was originally steaming to victory and then i made an error, and so they loved it…

I have no regrets though, the show was a blast to film and I had a great time.

I am a handbalancer, I balance on one spot on one or two hands very very well.  I am very apt at handwalking although I have never ever had to walk anything other than a flat surface.  I had 1-2 months during which i was exceptionally busy with other work where i had to try and teach myself to walk over obstacles.  For me then going up steps was the hardest, it took me a few sessions to get that and training them was hard when i had no steps to train on and it kept raining so i couldn’t use steps outdoors.  I can walk down steps very easy.  Walking down 30 steps was no problem from the beginning.  Walking up 1 step i couldn’t do in the beginning!  Eventually I got the technique and was able to do it.  Lisa was similar on the beam, it was an alien thing to her and I think she was grateful when they took it out of the course.

The course was originally built based on one from the handwalk course on a well known Japanese television show.   The original course was a lot harder and was more to do with who could complete the course rather than who could speed around it.  There were many many more steps and stairs, beams, and it was longer.  Fun to complete, but not a race of speed.  We had a 12 hour rehearsal day the day before the show was filmed (and a 9hour rehearsal day the day of filming) , at the end of which we were shattered and in the dress run we found going up the staircase impossible on fatigued arms and body.  Which is why it changed.  It became a race of speed, fall and the other person will likely win.

I won every single rehearsal on the old course, and every single rehearsal on the new course.  On the day the show was filmed I justified my knowledge that I deteriorate doing things repeatedly full out on the day of a performance/competition, especially on already tired arms (which is why i hate dress runs just before i have to perform).  I kept beating Lisa but she kept getting closer to me each time.  I thought I stood a very good chance of winning, but I knew she also stood a chance, something about Lisa is that she is the strongest girl I know!  On the slats when i fell it shocked me as it is an area where i was quite confident i could do it, it is all about where your weight is and the flow and for some reason I lost the flow and my weight fell backwards, i fell.  devastated, and i felt sorry for all the people who had voted for me to win.  We were not racing to win money ourselves, me and Lisa got paid the same amount each haha, but self satisfaction and pride were to be won.  I am happy for Lisa, and sad for myself!

I would love to do another handstand walk course sometime, I always have the saying you never fail until you quit trying, which is why I am eager and hungry to do another handwalking course for television and complete it and win. Sadly those programmes are few and far between, but maybe one day…

I’m hoping to do a really cool handwalking video which I will post here as soon as it is done, I wanted to do it to be able to do it before now but it never happened!  So for now, here is a video of me i put together in about 30mins of me using the only footage i could find!

Event for PANI

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

I was just sent these fabulous pictures from an event I did for PANI last month..They show the very very beginning of my act, and the very very end !!!


Olympics + Christmas

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

I have had an absolute blast over the Olympics, how very very special that it was happening right on my doorstep!  I watched a lot of it, and had tickets for the team finals of both mens and womens gymnastics, and for swimming heats.

I also worked throughout the Olympics for one of the corporate sponsors doing handstandbalance, and as part of the events being run by Newham, I also appeared on a 40 metre long billboard at Stratford Station.

Now the Olympics is over I am still busy performing at various events, but I am also beginning to prepare for the next busiest time of the year – Christmas.  I have lots of lovely themed costumes and acts that I am finalising and hopefully getting promotional material out to agents very soon. x



Television Show Next Week…

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Next week I appear on a television show…

I am excited to see it and also nervous.  During the filming of it as per usual for television, then some of the backstage talking and some of the shots of me were filmed by telling me what to say and how to pose.  I am of course hoping that they portray me as per the non-staged bits of filming, me being excited and happy, and that it was actually friendly competition between me and Lisa.  We both naturally wanted to win, but we trained for this together and are friends, we respect each others strengths and talent, we would have preferred both of us to tie even though that would never have been possible!

The Life of a Full Time Corporate Event’s Performer

Monday, August 13th, 2012

I work in many areas but the area where I primarily work as a performance artiste is at one off corporate events and launches.

My choreographed acts are between 4 and 6 minutes long.  Some people may presume that that means that I just get paid for 4-6 minutes of work every time I have a job.  WRONG !!!!   That 4-6 minutes are the result of a lot more work, part of a bigger picture.

So what do I do?

Training: I train.  Without training I would not be able to maintain the fitness levels required to do my skills.  Without training I would not be able to increase my skill repertoire and develop new acts.  Without training my body would not be as in shape/toned as it is.  Without the many many years of training i have done since i was little then I wouldn’t be able to do anything.  As well as stretching each evening at home then I train in various other locations for handbalance and aerial.  Training costs money each session, and training is a chunk of my working day that I have to pay to do.  I have actually renamed ‘i am going training’ to ‘I am going to work’, or ‘I am going to rehearse’.  Because training to some people sounds like i am only going as i have nothing else to do that day.  Training is WORK, very important work to ensure I can do each and every job that I do.  Training takes time in my working week.

Promoting:  I do my website, I do my blog, I do my social networking, I do my logos, I do emailing new people, I do replying to people who enquire about me.  Basically I spend time each week working on getting work.  Promotional work takes time in my working week.

Speaking to agents and clients: Some of my work comes through agents, some comes directly to me.  I speak to the individual about for example what they want and what performance wise I think would work well for their event.  I talk about the venue, is it suitable for what they want.  I supply technical requirements.  I supply when necessary a risk assessment.  Sometimes i go and do a site visit.  I work out and supply a quote for my work.  etc etc etc.  This all takes time in my working week.

Admin: Contracts, Invoicing, Payments, Chasing Enquiries, Chasing Payments, Subscriptions, Insurance, Receipts, Tax Returns, Music Editing, Video Editing.  This all takes time in my working week.

Costumes/Make-Up: I spend time handwashing costumes i have just used, rhinestoning new costumes, designing new costumes, repairing costumes.  Gigs are not always kind to costumes and I look after them as much as I can but it is inevitable that they will not last forever.  Costumes are not cheap.  Make-up is not cheap.  Both are essential to each gig I do.  This all takes time in my working week.

Props: My handstand canes, contortion box, aerial hoop, rigging, and every other equipment/prop I own are not cheap in the slightest.  I am very protective of all my props but sometimes they need repairing/replacing.   Without them my acts would not exist.

Travelling: Sometimes i have to travel for hours and hours to get to events, and then hours and hours back home again.

The Actual Gigs: My favourite part of my job.  I arrive a few hours before I am due to perform, because I need to get ready with hair and make-up, I need to view the performance area, make sure all is ok, and very importantly I need to warm up.  For contortion jobs I like to warm up for 40-60 minutes immediately prior to the performance.  My act is only 5 minutes long, but I am at an event for hours.  If I am doing aerial I am sometimes there for longer as I have to be at the venue early to rig, and I can not leave until every guest has gone home and I am able to de-rig.

So in essence then there is much more behind every 5 minute performance, and without all the above then the 5 minute performance would not happen.  I work as a performance artiste full time, it is my primary source of income, I LOVE EVERY SINGLE MINUTE OF IT.

Swimming Act

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

This summer I have been performing a solo [synchronised] swimming handbalance act.  It has been a very fun act to both create and perform.Here is a link to a blog that talks about this act: here

And a little sneak peak at one of the photos that appears on the blog.


Deloitte Advertisement

Saturday, August 4th, 2012

Possibly the largest published photo(s) of me I have had done :-)Stratford International Station concourse, 40 metres of me advertising Deloitte.  It is one of the stations where many many visitors to the Olympic Park are currently passing through.

So many people have been asking me if I am performing in the Olympics (ceremonies) – well no I am not, I wanted to be able to do all the other amazing things this month has brought me.  BUT there is 40metres of me at Stratford International Station, and I am also performing in a series of events throughout the games for one of the official sponsors.  So infact, yes I am performing as part of the Olympic celebrations 🙂



Midnight Beast Ch4 – Stunt Double

Saturday, August 4th, 2012

About two weeks ago I was on the television stunt doubling for a character called Frog (Hannah Tointon).  It was for a show called Midnight Beast on Ch4.  I had to jump to a handstand on the vault box 1/2 turn and then do a back somersault off.Here is a screen grab of me on the show, and a link to the episode.