This past weekend we had the first meet-up with YEN, Yosakoi European Network, in Leiden in the Netherlands. Four out of YEN’s five teams participated, sadly the German team Todoroki couldn’t be there. From Zyka WHOlock and I, Oushou, participated. It was an unbelievably fun weekend that we didn’t want to come to an end. For two and a half day we danced, eat, laughed, walked and had fun together.
Leiden is a beautiful city with channels and small cute houses. We arrived in the evening and got to see the waters lit up by the city lights as we walked to our host’s house. The members of Raiden was kind enough to let all of us visiting dancers stay with them, saving us the cost of hotel and also giving us an even better chance of getting to know each other.
Leiden at night
Leiden at night
Being so many is a lot different from training just with Zyka, the energy level is nothing alike. All of our teams have different styles, and though we have some dances in common we dance them in different ways.
All most everyone who participated in the dancing during Saturday
During the meet-up lasted we all got to know each other. Though from different countries and speaking different languages we are united in our love for yosakoi. And maybe our craziness as well.
And of course a strange-face shot as well
While there simply wasn’t enough time to talk with everyone as much as I would have wished, it feels like I have known the people I did talk to a lot longer than just for a few days.
Performing for each other is a good opportunity to try other teams costumes
Group-shot of the leaders of the different teams. To the very right is Jordin, leader of the one man Kyoensodefure team Sairanzensen who also took part in the meet-up
The meet-up was organized by Raiden besides yosakoi also had us discover Leiden together during an exciting scavenger hunt and took us out to try local specialities such as pancakes. They were so big!
WHOlock found a bunch of other One Piece crazy people and our last night in Leiden was spent discussing and looking at One Piece things, drinking tea and listing to beautiful piano playing.
The One Piece team with a much admired pop-up book
In the autumn we have invited YEN to Stockholm for a second meet-up and before that we have the summer performances we still hope will happen. There is much to look forward to and together I’m sure we will be able to spread yosakoi even more in Europe.
See you again soon!