ROPE + STRAPS RETREAT
WHEN, WHERE AND WHAT?
Date: March 24-31 (7 day), 2019
Location: Railay/Tonsai Beach, Krabi Peninsula, Thailand!
Take a break from winter and join us on the beach in Thailand! This unique retreat is specifically designed for the vertically inclined aerialist wanting to advance their technical level and find new inspiration in their practice. Alex, Pj, and Juan-Luis have carefully curated a week long intensive that will explore various elements of vertical work including dynamic skills/choreography, vertical theory/creation and complimentary straps technique. This is an opportunity to take a break from reality, to switch-off and dive into your creativity and passion in a safe and supportive environment. Whether you’re a student, artist or teacher, this immersion will breathe new life into your practice and gift you with new connections and friends from around the world.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
EARLY BIRD PRICE ending Nov 18 - $2150
PRICE: $2400 deposit of $500 (non-refundable)for double occupancy.
For a solo room add $250
YOUR FULL BALANCE MUST BE RECEIVED
NO LATER THAN MARCH 10, 2019
ALL PRICES ARE USD
Airfare to Thailand is not included.
Flights to Phuket, Bangkok and Krabi airport range in cost and duration. We suggest flying into Phuket and taking a scenic, relaxing boat ride to Krabi. See the FAQ
WHO ARE MY AMAZING TRAINERS?
Juan-Luis Gonazalez started his studies in Circus Arts in 2006 in the ‘Professional Aerial Program’ at the San Francisco Circus Center under the guidance of Elena Panova and Angelo Rodriguez.
Afterwards he returned to Guadalajara, Mexico to open his own training program where he has since hosted students from around the world to train his unique method of Straps technique. Juan-Luis also spent a year at the Ecole de Cirque de Quebec as the Straps, Rope and Fabric coach in 2014 and continues to travel and teach workshops across North America and Europe. He has had the pleasure of seeing many of his students go on to some of the most prestigious schools across the globe and continues to host international students at his gym in Guadalajara.
As an artist Juan-Luis has had the pleasure of performing at Festivals such as the Internacional de Crico y Chow 1st Edition, Concurso Nacional de Circo y Creación (3rd place) and the Festival Internacional de Arte Escenico where he was part of the “ Creacion Colectiva” with 5 days of residence, with artists from Cirque Du Soleil, 7 Fingers, Italy, Croatia and Chile.
Alex Allan is an Aerial Rope Artist and Dancer best known for his performative work that blends the boundaries of circus, dance and theatre. He graduated with a Bachelor of Communications – Theatre & Media from his home country of Australia. It was here that he was introduced to physical theatre and the Circus Arts leading him to train at the San Francisco Circus Center in the Professional Aerial Program.
Influenced by his combined educational background, Alex is driven to find and convey meaning through movement believing that the body can communicate that which words cannot. He has worked with companies such as Teatro Zin Zanni, Acrobatic Conundrum and Zaccho Dance Theatre.
As an aerial and movement coach, Alex’s approach focuses on technique and efficiency resulting in a graceful and organic quality of movement. He has taught workshops across Europe, North America, and Australia.
PJ has been multi-disciplinary aerialist since 2008, specializing in corde lisse since 2013. She was introduced to the rope in 2012 during an Aerialistas contract led by the amazing Lara Paxton. After finishing the contract, she decided to focus on that single cord and sought help from Alex Allan to give her a solid start to her solo training. PJ loves the simplicity of this apparatus and thrives on chasing momentum. Her performance work is defined by her love of the narrative, with a strong sense of intuitive pathways stemming from training and creating in isolation.
Holding a masters degree in kinesiology in addition to 20 years of teaching experience, PJ loves to dive deep in her coaching. She firmly believes that coaching should be comprised of encouraging self-discovery of pathways, learning multiple techniques, and pushing physical limits, in equal parts. Her progressions involve seemingly unrelated skills that utilize similar motor pathways but with graduated physical demand. This particular approach has enabled her to assist many students and performing artists to access one of the more complicated skills, rolling while ascending.
PJ currently lives in Bellingham, Washington, and coaches rope and handstands in Seattle. She has performed with the Acrobatic Conundrum, Venardos Circus, the Aerialistas, Bellingham Circus Guild, the Dream Science Circus, Western Australian Circus Festival, Moisture Festival, Apogee Aerial Dance Festival, Southern Fried Circus Festival, Vashon Open Air Festival, Denver Aerial Arts Festival, Vancouver Circus Festival and in Stuttgart, Germany, at the Friedrichsbau Variete. Her current project is a collaboration with Eve Diamond called Girls Gone Rope.
WHO IS THIS RETREAT FOR?
Level: Intermediate and Advanced. Students should be comfortable with long arm inversions and straddle beats.
WORKSHOPS / FOCUS:
Level: All Levels – Participants should feel confident in performing multiple straight-arm inversions.
Straps technique is the foundation of Rope and Fabric. It is to Aerial Arts as Ballet is to dance. The pathways present in straps training are fundamental for vertical apparatus and complimentary for dynamic movements. Juan-Luis has a unique approach to Straps. His technique focuses on precise body alignment and positioning. His emphasis on full body integrated movement allows students to perform difficult skills and transitions without having to rely on brute strength. This results in a physical quality that is strong and powerful yet fluid and graceful. All aerialists will benefit from these workshops whether wanting to take their straps practice to the next level or apply the techniques in their training..
Level: Intermediate/Advanced – Participants should feel confident with a range of beats and dynamic-based movement and be able to perform multiple, clean straight-arm inversions in the air and straight-armed hip keys.
This series has been designed to give participants a new perspective on the creation of contemporary rope work. Students will not only learn a new vocabulary of momentum-based skills but they will learn them as a part of larger phrases of choreography. Skills will be explored as transitions and technique will be focused on to create a quality of movement that is fluid, seamless and powerful. We will also explore C-shaping pathways a means moving efficiently up and down the rope in rotational movements.
Students will also explore different ways of transitioning from the floor to the rope to give inspiration for creating work that is not restricted to the air but that moves organically between floor and air.
Rolls, Goals, and Stalls
This is a technique class to develop the rolling skill in single coil, double coil, hip key and other roll-up variations. Half roll and pathways utilizing rolling legs and c-shaping will also be explored. Understanding how to roll up, and slowing any rolls down, allows limitless stall positions and the creation of interesting bookends to choreographic sequencing. In addition to rolling technique, participants will work on developing an individualized training regime for the more strength-based positions and maneuvers on rope such as flag, scorpion, and meat hook.
Connecting Floor & Air
Prerequisites: Participants should be prepared to explore movement dance and acrobatic movement on the floor with and without their apparatus. Some dance experience is helpful but not necessary.
This immersion series will give participants a new perspective on the creation of contemporary work on vertical apparatus. In these classes we will explore choreography that connects movement between the floor and air, integrating horizontal and vertical planes. Skills will be explored as transitions and technique will be implemented to create a quality of movement that is both fluid and seamless.
Students will learn different ways of engaging with the floor with their bodies as well as their apparatus. We will also focus on the development of transitions and phrases in the air that naturally integrate with the choreography we learn on the ground. Students will come out of this immersion with a new vocabulary of movements and a new insight into the creation of work that is not restricted to the paradigms of ‘aerials’ but has the option to move freely between floor and air and make use of the entire space.
COOL! HOW DO I SIGN UP?
This retreat will have a simple, brief application process. Please fill out this google doc and we will review within a week and get back to you! Don’t worry, you can send your deposit after we reply.
After we respond, you may pay via:
Send your FULL BALANCE or $500 deposit to
(paypal as a friend, check, or venmo available) to secure your spot!
Pay by checks: Mail a check of $500 for deposit or the remainder of your balance to:
Dances In Air
3505 Old Ivy Ln NE
Atlanta, GA 30342
Paypal: Send deposit and balances, please try to avoid fees (paypal as a friend) to
Venmo: Send deposit and balances to @dancesinair
FULL BALANCE MUST BE RECEIVED NO LATER THAN MARCH 10TH 2019
TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS ONCE IN A LIFETIME EXPERIENCE.
WHAT DOES THE PRICE INCLUDE?
Most everything but airfare!
Comfortable transport to and from Phuket Airport via Ferry
Gorgeous, Comfortable Jungle Accommodations (2 people per room) with options for single room at $250 surcharge
Aerial classes in dedicated aerial indoor/outdoor studio
Professional Photography of your experience
Transport to all group activities (Authentic long boats, speed boats and ferries)
Unforgettable Excursions - We will have many adventures, and there will be an excursion rest day that will include boating to 4 islands and snorkeling with a lunch provided!
Relaxing Beach time in paradise.
Breakfasts with vegan and vegetarian options.
Two celebration dinners and an excursion day meal.
Cost does NOT include..
Travelers Insurance. However, we do recommend you get it. Check out the FAQ page for more info.
MOST Lunches and Dinners. There are many amazing restaurants in the area at very affordable prices. (local price is $5-10/meal) WE WILL INCLUDE TWO CELEBRATION DINNERS AND EXCURSION DAY LUNCH.
Amenities such as Thai massage and other self-care activities. However, they are delightfully priced and encouraged!
Excursions and Travel costs not supervised through Dances in Air (personal adventures)
All recommend Vaccinations, Medicines and Personal health items you are responsible for.
Alcohol and souvenirs
(local price for: Water $1 Beer is $1-3 Alcoholic drink $3-7 Bottle $5-15 Coconut $5)
SO, WHY ARE WE GOING TO THAILAND?
Railay/Tonsai Beach is located in the southern part of Thailand where the Krabi peninsula's fairytale limestone formations come to a dramatic and scenic climax, the ultimate gym for rock-climbing fanatics. Monkeys frolic alongside climbers on the gorgeous crags, while down below some of the prettiest beaches in THE WORLD are backed by lush, tropical jungle.
Thailand is a beautiful country with a fascinating history and culture. Thailand’s national slogan “The Land of Smiles” is true. The Thai people are warm, helpful, friendly to foreigners and couldn’t be more accommodating. With only a few Thai words and phrases and a few rules of the road to follow, adventuring in Thailand will be an experience you’ll never forget.
Our adventures will be happening during Thailand’s dry season. The South Thailand/Krabi area can still be hot and humid. In Thailand, DRY really means less rain than usual. If you enjoy a mildly hot, humid day in the southeast, you’ll be very comfortable.
Eating in Thailand is a dream come true. World renowned, Thai food is unbelievably delicious and varied. From a whole fried fish with Thai chili sauce, to the countries famous sweet and spicy Pad Thai, the meals you’ll experience are an appetising treat. Always fresh, with a big lean toward vegetables, fruits, rice and seafood, Thai cuisine is a gourmet's delight as for both the vegan, vegetarian and omnivores alike.
WHAT IS THE TRIP LIKE? SCHEDULE?
6:30- 7:30 am (optional) self care time before breakfast. You will want pack for the days activities each morning/ night in a light daypack!
7:30-8:30 am Breakfast every day at the hotel buffet, with many options available.
8:30-9 am, Walk to the aerial studio. The walk is about 25 minutes and will be a great, easy cardio warm-up across a sandy beach, some natural rock and stairs, and paved walking path. You choose to run on this path or meander and grab a coffee or smoothie or fresh Thai coconut. There will be monkeys!
9am - 12pm Aerial studio warm-up and physical preparation exercises followed by specific workshops. (see above)
The aerial studio is in an open air studio that we will be privately using for classes all week.
12pm- 3pm Lunch and rest time. You are free to get a Thai massage, visit some deliciously tranquil beaches, shop, or explore the peninsula, including the viewpoint hike (takes 2 hours) until the next aerial session.
From the aerial studio, we have many options for authentic Thai cuisine that overlook mangroves and the bay. Apart from Thai food (much of that being Vegetarian/ pescatarian) they also generally have Italian and American or even Mexican style food. These are all clustered one minute walk from the studio along the strip that includes small beach town necessities and Thai massage spots! Guests will pay for their own lunches and dinners unless we eat at the same restaurant together.
3pm - 6pm Second training of the day-
Specific aerial workshops. (see above)
6pm - After all this heavy training, beautiful sunsets await us over the water. Personally it is my goal to be in the ocean as many sunsets I can have in my life, so I try for this every day. It is always magical, and some days it is beyond belief. The ocean is long and flat with no drop off, like a lagoon, it has no waves, and is very tranquil. It’s perfect for coral and snorkeling, resting in, walking on sand bars… Awesome, salty, clear, and at least 80 degrees for sore muscles.
Just after sunset, we will head home and clean up for dinner. We will have chosen a beach location for the sunset and dinner of our choice per day. Dinners can be a great time to hang out with friends, most days we socialize at the dinner table for a couple hours.
Afterwards, guests can use free time to enjoy an early bedtime, get a Thai massage, enjoy nighttime on the beach, or late night fun in clubs/ bars. The entire peninsula is walkable and caters to tourism, and has no roads for cars.
We will host two celebration dinners- upon arrival and the last day after we have a showcase party!
There will be a total rest day where we take an excursion to neighboring islands and go snorkeling. Lunch will be included in that trip. You will love this rest day!
SOUNDS AWESOME, HOW DO WE GET THERE?
See the travel information on our FAQ! If you choose The option to meet at Phuket Airport in time for the ferry, you can get scooped up by our retreat guides! Door to door, you have nothing to worry about. You can also choose to travel in different ways on your own.
Traveling to Thailand requires a passport and some medical preparation. The FAQ will outline all of this and we are happy to help you navigate the cheapest, most practical solutions.
WHAT ARE THESE COMFORTABLE JUNGLE ACCOMMODATIONS?
Superior accommodations with authentic Thai design and simple, up-scale presentation. Rooms will have AC.
Two beds are in all shared rooms, and private rooms are available upon request for a surcharge. Rooms include seating areas, private bathrooms, and more. There is a restaurant and store at the resort, and the resort is located on the Sea, secluded just beside Railay beach.The resort is set in lush greenery with peaceful atmosphere and well known rock climbing cliff as the backdrop.
It takes just two minutes to walk to your room from Tonsai Beach, a swath of white sand that fringes the crystal clear water of Andaman Sea.
Our resort’s restaurant is on the beachfront and offers both International and Thai food. Here you could enjoy delicious cuisine while enjoying the ocean or watch rock climbing activities.
OK, HOW DO I PACK FOR THIS ADVENTURE?!
Pack your bags for a great time doing all the things you love! Pack light and bright, for a sunny time, for aerial training, and to look fabulous while you lounge by the pool, on the beach and make new friends everywhere.
Here’s our list of ‘must pack’ for this adventure:
Your Passport (30 day Visa given on entry)
Personal Medicines/Prescriptions (Including antibiotics, anti diarrhea and/or digestive aids)
Small pouch or purse for cash and cards
Headlamp (You’ll want your hands free)
Swimsuit (2 will do)
Small Sunscreen and Bug Spray (Also available for purchase everywhere in Thailand)
Adventure Shoes (Sneakers or Trekking Sandals) and Flip-Flops for beach
Back warmer / wrist guards
Lite Summer Dress or Casual Evening clothes (1 will do)
Camera (But we got ya)
Small writing pad for class/workshop notes
An open mind and smiling face
You will need some medical items, please look at the FAQ for info!