November 13, 2012

Artist Feature - Leslie Davis

We have a thing here in Kansas City called First Friday. I've talked about it before, but in case you didn't get to read it, every first friday of the month, there is a huge art walk. It takes over the entire Crossroads district and there is every type of art you can imagine, from painting, sculpture, performance. Everything. That was the first time I had come across these kind of aerial performances. And I was mesmerized. It is one of the most beautiful kinds of performances I've ever seen and recently I had the opportunity to speak to a local performer, Leslie Davis.

I'm a Kansas City, MO native, and I grew up doing dance, gymnastics, & other sports when I was young. After studying dance performance & choreography at The University of Southern Mississippi, I traveled around some more and ventured into other interests, but ended up back in Kansas City around 2006. I took a Aerial Silks workshop from a Denver instructor with some other women, and that was the start of my Aerial career. Now going on 5 years, I've performed with many groups around the Kansas City area and am a founding member of Voler:Thieves of Flight. We perform on different Aerial Apparatuses for corporate events, parties, and festivals just to name a few. (you can check us out at I enjoy performing on the Aerial Silks the most. I kind of the high-flyer of the group, doing drops from up to 30ft high. I also perform on the Aerial Hammock, and have just started working the Lyra (aerial hoop).

I was drawn to Aerial from my background in dance & gymnastics. I thought it would be a unique way to combine my talents into a different medium I hadn't seen much before. I love to spin, flip, and dance too, and I get to do all of that with Aerial while getting a great workout as well.
The other women I train & perform with in Voler inspire me. We push each other to be just as good or better than the other, and that pushes us all to greater heights. Also watching videos of Aerialists from all over the world gives me new ideas and moves to try. Lastly, one of my biggest inspirations is music. I'm always looking for new music to perform too, its one of the driving forces in my performances since I choreograph my moves with the music to add more impact. 

I think Aerial is a great activity whether as a hobby, or a different way to work out, or as a performance career. Its fun and anyone can try it. My advice would be to always learn from a professional and practice with a partner for safety. It is difficult and takes consistency to build strength and muscle memory, but once you do it is very rewarding!

I so wish I could do something like this! Maybe, one day. Thank you so much for sharing Leslie!
xoxo - Jillian

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1 comment:

  1. I love silks! I think it is so beautiful and something I would absolutely love to try.

    <3 Melissa


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