The Color of Time Blysh Festival Cardiff

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The color of time Cardiff Bay

A few months ago, on social media, wales millennium centre were advertising the Blysh festival, The Color of Time, which was asking for dancing volunteers and volunteers to hand out the powder paint.
Ive seen a couple of similar events.
One at Splott Market, DJ dance music and throwing colour powder paint. I really fancied experiencing it but the price tag put me off.
Then the color of time caught my eye. A free event for everyone and wanted help too! I gave them an email and I said I would like to help.
Closer to the time I had another email with what was expected. Dancers had to go to a workshop to learn the moves and we all had to meet up including the powder distributors,earlier in the day before the show started.
Unfortunately heavy rain showers and strong wind was forecast and as expected that’s what happened. It was close to being cancelled. I was happy they decided to go ahead despite the weather. They said they would do the performance out the front under the shelter, instead of a parade around the bay.
I was asked as a powder distributor to come along at 2pm and stay until later, then go off have some tea and come back at 5.45, for it to start at 7pm. I emailed many times asking if it was really necessary for me to come at 2, as I would have to arrange child care and I was unsure how I would last that many hours with my pain and fatigue.
They said I had to and it would be a risk if I turned up later.
Well on the day, they said a hello to everyone and said the powder distributors could go and come back at 5.45pm. I wasn’t too impressed that after all my asking 2 mins after starting at 2, they let us go! (The dancers stayed to practice)
Anyway, I decided to watch them rehearse and I text my mum to let her know. She decided to pick my son up from my partner earlier so we could have tea together and then come to the show.

Watching the rehearsal, I could feel myself playing at the moves and attempting to memorise them in my head. Once they started dancing with the music I got more excited for later on.

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At 5.45pm, we came back and collected a rucksack bag each which was full of sachets of powder paint.
Once the volunteer dances joined the professional dances we were to start handing out 2 sachets to each person and to ask them to keep one until the end finale.

Just before 7, as we met outside, no one really knew what was happening. The sun had come out from behind the clouds for 5 minutes, and the musicians and speakers were pushed and positioned away from where we were told it would be happening. I asked some of the staff what was happening and they weren’t sure either. Then the heavy rain and wind started again, and the dancers, musicians and crowd swiftly made way to under the shelter.

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The dancers were brilliant. They started off with serious faces, fighting, pushing, and scaring people. This led into them undressing into just underwear.

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Their physique really showed with the dancing and moves, you could see every muscle being used.
The smell of incense blew in the air, the dancers got dressed into white clothing and while some danced together, some used the powder paint and sticks to draw patterns and a flower on the floor.
The dancers then started to experiment with the powdered colour paint. They took a little out of a container attached to their belt, and explored and moved, blowing the paint, throwing at each other, and then rubbing paint on each other’s faces and then hugging. They did this with the crowd too. I had a male dancer put pink hand prints on my face then hug me.

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The public began to join in more, and hugged back and laughed at their friends getting paint smothered on them.

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We already knew from what we read that we would get paint on us as they recommend wearing old clothing. We all bought a white tshirt each to wear.

When they waved the volunteer dances in, the whole public dived in too! I didn’t get to see any of the dancing as there was such a crowd I don’t know how they were able to dance!
I started giving out the powder paint, at first people were a little wary, I think they were probably wondering if you had to pay for it.

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Then once the word had got around, everyone started herding around ask for more and more. It was mostly teenagers that were getting a bit greedy.
It was fun though! Everyone joining in, laughing, smiling and getting covered in bright colourful paint!
Even my son started tipping the paint on strangers!

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I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and if they were to come back again I would volunteer 🙂

My mum came prepared, she took the oldest of the 3 cars they have, which also had leather seats that were easier to clean than fabric, and took lots of old sheets and bags to cover the car seats to protect them.

Great experience for all!
If there is one near you soon I certainly recommend attending!

The color of time is put together by the group Cie Artonik.

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