If there is one thing we can benefit from in this short and topsy-turvy life, it's living in the moment. That's the philosophy Casandra Tanenbaum and friends of FlowSource follow. The Lake Worth troupe is made up of flow artists — jugglers, fire dancers, acrobats, break dancers, yogis — who perform at festivals, in parks, and at special events around South Florida using props such as neon LED Hula-Hoops, handheld fans, staffs, and fire. Flow art concerns a variety of movement and dance forms that channel participants into a state of flow.
Tanenbaum describes it as a "psychological, meditative state where time and space disappear." That state of being creates an experience of euphoria and connects the mind and body, says the energetic Lake Worth resident. She got into "flow" nearly a decade ago and eventually created Florida Flow Fest in 2010, which she launched in 2011 and has run the past four years in Lake Worth. New Times named it this year's Best Festival.
Last October, Florida Flow Fest attracted upward of 1,000 attendees from around the country to its three-day workshops and evening performances. The event proved so alluring and successful that city officials took notice and commissioned Tanenbaum and participants of FlowSource to perform at Lake Worth's Fourth of July celebration.
FlowSourcePerforms Friday, July 4, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Bryant Park, 2 S. Golfview Road , Lake Worth. And from 8 to 9:30 p.m. along Lake Avenue in downtown Lake Worth. No cover. Visit flowsource.us.
Performances will take place Friday at Bryant Park from 5 to 8 p.m., and then the group will head west over to Lake Avenue. The street will be closed to traffic for the festivities, which also include live music and a laser-light show. Along Lake Avenue, FlowSource members will take to the streets and sidewalks from 8 to 9:30 p.m. and showcase the art form.
"I spin hoop almost predominately," Tanenbaum says. "I dabble in fans and poi and staff." Onlookers on the Fourth can expect to see modern hoop dance with colorful LED lights, blended with circus tricks. "I sometimes use two hoops — sometimes one hoop on my hand and the other is on my leg." The group opted not to use fire because of anticipated large crowds.
Patrick Kiebzak, one of FlowSource's founders, plans to entertain passersby with LED poi. "It's very, very fun," Kiebzak says of the performance art involving poi, which involves swinging tethered balls. Poi props can include fire or not.
"Flow to me is an effortless state where movement just happens," he explains. "You know how people say 'Just go with the flow'? Well, that's the idea behind spinning poi. My poi becomes an extension of my arm, and it moves without me trying."
The relaxed blond guitarist compares the experience to making music. "Playing music is something I would compare a flow state to. A musician gets into an awesome groove, is locked in, and hits all the right notes with his band. That's flow art — it's about creative expression through movement and bridging the mind-body connection."
Since discovering poi eight years ago, Kiebzak leads a consciously evolving life in which he says, "I like to say I'm having the best day of my life, even when challenges come up. I know that on the other side there is a reward, an evolution or personal growth."
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Another element that's prominent in poi is geometry. When a participant spins the tethered balls, they create shapes like painting in the air, especially when LED lights are involved.
Jeremiah Collins, a member and cofounder of FlowSource, takes a keen interest in the geometric patterns yielded by spinning poi. He observes patterns in nature and the world around him. "Natural health and geometry and movement connects into everything we do, and the flow arts has all those components," he says. "You see geometry in your house, in art, sculpture, and when you are in alignment, you can see ratios as the lights spin into synchronicity. You'll see the geometry come out from the patterns created from the fire, rhythm, and light trails."
Collins admits he keeps a box full of props and goodies close by when performing. "I think Patrick would make a good Uncle Sam because he's so tall," he chuckles.
Aside from this week's big showcase, FlowSource offers visual spectacles, spin jams, a free mingle, and playtime on the second Sunday of every month in Delray Beach at Veterans Park, from 1 p.m. until sunset.