Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Dance and Magic in Herräng

     The Herräng Dance Camp was a magical experience. And without using that term lightly, I believe to have lived truly magical moment in that place where I lived 7 weeks in community with so many people wit on common love: the dance.

     The magic started at the beginning of the year, when in Nico’s house we were celebrating the new year with a blues party. Randomly talking to the people present it came up in the conversation that I was thinking on going to Europe and someone told me about a dance festival or camp in Sweden. I asked, enquired and as soon as I could I applied for a job. It had to be done at the beginning of the year, but the process was delayed by complications and changes. Finally I did the formal application when I was already in New York on my way to Europe, in mid-February, and as the answer was taking a long time in coming I started to imagine other roads.

     Late but safe I was confirmed for the position, for 3 of the 7 weeks which I could work. I was also thinking about taking classes a couple of weeks, and it’s not allowed to do both things at the same time, so it seemed I was going to have 2 weeks with nothing to do. Easily manageable. I ended up working the 7 weeks in different places, without taking any classes, just living camp’s life.

GETTING PEOPLES AND THINGS ON THE KOMBI

     I also planned the getting there so as to share the expenses, I arranged with other dancers to take them from Stockholm or from the airport (I even picked up Jenny’s bag since she wanted to bike her way there), and we took some magic into Herräng in the form of candy recuperated from some supermarket’s dumpster.

DUMPSTER DIVING BEFORE ARRIVING (FROM HERE CANDIES WOULD COME)

THE FIRST SIGN WITH OUR DESTINATION... LET'S GO!

WE MADE IT!
(THAT GRASS WAS CUT SHORTLY AFTER THIS PICTURE)
     Without knowing where I had arrived, how the Camp worked exactly, where did things go and what was going to happen when it started, the first week of work, the “Set Up” week, would be the preparation and construction of all that was needed. From the big tents where classes would be given, where I spend most of my time, up to the preparation of the places that during the years are used for something else (like the School or the Library) and which would be used to accommodations or dancing. Intense work, always in a good mood, with lots of crossed jokes, and all of that immerse in the wonderful mixture of cultures that comes to be in a place with people from different countries with one common passion.

THE FIRT MEAL IN HERRÄNG

AND ONE OF THE FIRSTS NIGHTS IN HERRÄNG :p

IN THE LINE FOR MEALS INSUSUAL THINGS HAPPEN...
... LIKE MASSAGES OR FEEDING PEOPLES NACHOS WITH SALSA

     The five weeks that followed, in which the Dance Camp functions as such, there is a daily routine that envelopes everything, and however for those of us who lived and worked there each day was different. The schedules may be more or less similar (in Limo for example no day is the same as the other, and one finds out the night before; in Hell’s Kitchen the schedule is the same every day, but the people coming to eat doesn’t show up at the same time nor they feel the same every day; and not mentioning positions that serve the general public and that play lottery every day).

IN RECEPTION YOU CAN BE SERENATED IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT

IN LIMO YOU CAN GO TO AN EXCURSION TO A DREAMY ICE CREAM SHOP

     What you always have is party, dance, swing… and more things. And what I enjoyed the most personally was the company. The friends, laying back some place, with a drink or without, talking, listening to music, watching a movie, dancing, going dancing, playing some game, or any other thing you can imagine.

I TOOK A PICTURE, AND I GOT A SOLO
OR IN ANOTHER PHOTO, I WAS REJOICED WITH A SMILE


EVEN AS A HOT DOG YOU GET ASKED TO DANCE BY THE PRETTY ONES! 

THE COMMUNITY HOUSE (OR FOLKETS HUS) WHERE MUCH OF THE MAGIC HAPPENS


AND WHEN THE MADNESS IN PEOPLE GENERATES A SPONTANEUS PARTY

WITH SO MANY BEAUTIFUL CRAZY ON THE SCENE!

     In the last week the work consisted on taking down everything we had put up and putting every thing back in its place. More importantly, that week was the week of goodbyes. Everyone that was there had known each other, in the vast majority, for some weeks. Some had been together all of the 7 weeks. And although some of us were rookies, other had been in Herräng already several times, so the friendships were even older… And we all left. The bubble burst for all of us and we all had to move on. Some went back to their lives and routines, other kept on traveling to some new destination, other travelled to their new job, and we will all remember those weeks in which we had the opportunity of getting away from everyday problems and wrap ourselves in a blanket of magic and dance.

EVEN THE FROGS ARE TAKEN CARE

AND WE RECEIVE THE PRETTIEST GIFTS BY THE BEACH

And some may be as lucky as to go back.


FOR THE GOODBYE, WE HAD A TEA WITH JENNY IN THE NEW GARDEN OF THE HOUSE


¡THANK YOU CARO FOR THE PHOTOS!
IF YOU LIKED THEM, SEE MORE IN https://500px.com/carolinacomposto