Yami’s third visit to Cardiff and Bridgend was as inspirational as always! We hosted workshops throughout Bridgend and Cardiff in October 2011, spreading the funk bug to all who participated. We chose to open up the age categories this time round, allowing younger dancers to take part. Having such a range of ages and abilities enabled a friendly, carefree atmosphere.
Yami taught the historical context and basic techniques of Popping and Locking, opening the sessions with ‘Old School’ Social Dances. The room was on fire as we all grooved in partners doing the Rock Steady, Lockers Hustle, and Push and Pull. As always, Yami put emphasis on the fact that we must learn to ‘dance’ before layering on the technique of these styles. The Social Dances got everybody grooving and feeling the music as a group. Once the grooves were in place some of the basic techniques of Locking were taught and drilled into each individual! The same format applied to the Popping workshop, which ended with group combinations using Popping phrases.
To end in style, Yami finished the workshops with a Soul Train, encouraging everyone to funk their way down the middle using the Social Dances learnt. What a way to wrap up all the knowledge passed on throughout the sessions. Each person who participated in the workshops can now say who invented these funk styles, where they came from and how they developed. No doubt we will be getting Yami up again soon!