Student of the Month

January 2016
Stephanie Myles and Flannery Myles-Williams
What brought you to Bumbershoot Aerial Arts?
Stephanie: i wanted to do roller derby for a long time (and i also have the best derby name in mind EVER -- Tara Toma, do NOT steal it) but i could never get into it b/c i kept freaking out about knocking out my teeth, so when my friend lauren emailed me a link to the bumbershoot website, it seemed like it'd scratch that same itch. she and i signed up together about a year and a half ago, and though it wasn't for her, it was obvious immediately that it was perfect for me.

Flannery: i saw Circus Flora and i always wanted to do circus like in Circus Flora. when i grow up i'm going to be a circus girl!
What is your favorite apparatus to work on?
Stephanie: trapeze! no question.

Flannery: slings.
What is your favorite thing about Bumbershoot?
Stephanie: until i sat down to really think about this, i probably would've said it was the complete lack of competitiveness -- but i think it really goes beyond that to the atmosphere that i suspect is very carefully created by the coaches, an atmosphere that makes even the idea of competition or comparison seem insane. it's so wonderful to be in a place where everyone WANTS you to succeed and where everyone celebrates your progress unreservedly.

Flannery: i like the apparatuses and getting to play and climb and use all my energy and muscles.
What kinds of things do you do when you aren’t hanging in the air?
Stephanie: truth? i think about hanging in the air! for my job, i work in oncology clinical research (which i love), and i periodically binge-read comics and expend a lot of mental energy on metatextual analyses of the marvel cinematic universe.

Flannery: i do gymnastics and piano and i go to kindergarten and play with my friends.
What is your favorite dessert?
Stephanie: my mom's chocolate chip cookies.

Flannery: any kind of lollipop.
When you are having a tough day in class, what do you tell yourself?
Stephanie: my junior high/high school art teacher, mr derleth, used to have us repeat after him: "i can't draw YET like i'd like to be able to, but with practice, i'll get better and better." some of my trap pals have heard me say this, i'm sure, b/c it applies equally well to aerial. i also spend a lot of time thinking about the benefits of failure and working on something that doesn't come easily -- and i remind myself that there's value in the process, not just the end product.

Flannery: i tell myself to remember when it was hard to do a trick i think is easy now and to keep going.
What is your favorite trick? Least favorite?
Stephanie: back walkover. it definitely doesn't get enough love! honorable mention goes to iron fanny (which i guess is more a transitional move) b/c sunny and i have decided to rebrand it the Margaret Thatcher. i don't think i actually have a least fave!

Flannery: butterfly on slings is my FAVORITE! i don't have a least favorite trick.
If you could run away to a desert island with one person from Bumbershoot who would it be?
Stephanie: oh my god it would HAVE to be sunny b/c she is my aerial heart and my beautiful cinnamon roll, too good for this world, too pure. plus my trap 2 and 3 (and 4!) pals are all my ladybros and dudeladybros and i just can't choose!

Flannery: mom!
Do you have a favorite memory from class or performing?
Stephanie: the day i realized i could pull myself to standing AT WILL at any point no matter how many times i'd already done it that day. i have specific memories of feeling like i'd:
- never be able to do it at all
- never be able to do it consistently
- never be able to do it more than 3 times in a given day
- never be able to do it with good form and yet I CAN.
honorable mention to the day brittany and i did our first crossback straddles a couple months ago, b/c i had no idea i was even close to being able to do something that cool.

Flannery: when i first learned butterfly and kris let me flop back into the fabric and it was so fun and i wanted to do it AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN.
Past Students of the Month