During Christmas Eve 2011 I was sitting with Peantus in the kitchen in a student dorm in Japan, looking in a dictionary for a good name for the yosakoi team I had convinced her to start with me. And thus Zyka YOSAKOI was born.
Over five years has gone since that day and Zyka has gone from four people dancing in my living room, doing our best not to hit to many things in the process, to a team with two original performances, more members, international performances and so much more. Through all of this I have been the leader of Zyka.
It has been a honour and a joy to see the team grow and the members come to love yosakoi just like I do. It has not always been an easy road, many of us are strong willed, me maybe most of all. But while there of course has been difficult times, fights among the members and opinions that no matter what stay far far apart I honestly believe that the amount of joy and fun we have shared over the years is far more than the amount of sadness, anger and misery we have gone through at times. We have done great things together, and I am sure more great things are waiting for us in the future.
But five years is a long time and in the beginning of this year I came to the conclusion that it was time for both me and Zyka to move on, and that it wasn’t me who was to take Zyka down the road to the unknown future that awaited us. I love Zyka and always will, but it is time for me to focus on other things and Zyka deserves a leader with full focus on the team. So for that reason the leadership was handed over to WHOlock (Amanda Carleson) who was chosen as the new leader at the team’s annual meeting in spring this year. I ask that you show WHOlock the same support and encouragement that you have shown me through the years.
So at the 22nd of April this year I did my last performance as leader of Zyka at the Cherry blossom festival organised by Stockholm Japanese Society. Zyka performed with Yosakoi Naruko Odori, the first yosakoi dance of them all, as well as a more modern one together with Japanese children who joined us especially for this performance and dancers from the Try Yosakoi Project. It was a great event, and though our practice time together was short the children did their best and we had a great performance together. Many thanks to Stockholm Japanese Society for allowing us to be part of such a great performance!
And with this my five years as leader of Zyka came to and end. I will of course stay a member of the team and do my best to help Zyka continue to develop best I can. I look forward to what awaits us and where WHOlock as the new leader is going to take the team.
Thank you to all members of Zyka, past and present, for allowing me to continue leading the team for so many years and for choosing to be a part of this crazy idea that I convinced Peanuts to make reality of with me back in the winter of 2011. And thank you to all of those who are, or who have been, supporting our team in different ways during this time. I am immensely thankful for all the help and encouragement you have given.
Thank you for all this time!