The Ultimate Yoga Flow | Yoga Live at The Sage, Gateshead
Hannah Bullimore represented HLN at Yoga Live - an exciting new event on the North East yogis calendar. Yoga teacher Grace Johnson partners up with a musician to create a unique event at The Sage...
By Hannah Bullimore
The Sage, Gateshead is perhaps one of our most iconic venues in the North East. It is now difficult to envisage the Quayside skyline without the cloudlike, mirrored shape of one of the North East’s most beautiful modern buildings. As I stand in line in the atrium of the Sage there is a definite buzz. Groups chatter excitedly, sunlight drifting through the walls of glass as the time for the doors to open draws closer.
However, this is no ordinary crowd of gig-goers. In fact, the people around me are clad in yoga gear, carrying mats under one arm and have the excited glow of those who have rolled out of bed on a Sunday morning ready to go and seriously chill out.
Yoga Live is an exciting new event on the North East yogis calendar. With tickets quickly selling out, it is now a much-anticipated occasion. For each event, Grace Johnson, yoga teacher at Yoga Therapies, partners up with a musician or group to create a highly unique and exciting yoga event. Not just a class, I think it’s fair to call this an occasion.
Held in the Northern Rock Foundation Hall, the room is a huge cube of tactile wood and glass, allowing the sound of the music and Grace’s voice to move around the space. Lines of yogis lie out their mats and sit in excited groups, making friends or chatting with whoever they’ve come along with. There’s a distinctly friendly atmosphere as they take in their unique surroundings.
Then, the music begins. This time round, violinist Sophie Appleton of the Northern Sinfonia accompanied Grace’s teaching with a beautiful selection of classical music. As a yoga teacher myself I often feel there’s a comparison to be made between dance and yoga, particularly the flowing vinyasa style we enjoyed on Sunday. This is only deepened when live music is added to the mix. I felt myself really trying to move with the music and each movement that Grace prompted fit with the melodies, so that we were all, as a room, moving in sync in one beautiful dance. The class was dynamic, never pausing for too long but moving fluidly with plenty of options for all levels of yoga lover. There was also a lovely long savasana to finish in which we could all lie still and enjoy Sophie’s violin prowess.
When I spoke to Grace about Yoga Live she explained that; ‘I’ve always used music a lot in my classes and sequenced it along with my flow. A really good friend of mine explained The Sage were looking for someone to start a yoga class and she suggested me. We decided to start with a one-off event and it all went from there.’ It’s clear to see from Grace’s love of both music and sequencing dynamic and interesting yoga classes, that this is a great event for anyone who loves music and yoga, or wants to give either a try. Particularly as each event has different styles of music so that there really is something for everyone.
I have been lucky to attend a number of unique yoga classes, but this one was truly special. It wasn’t gimmicky. It was true to the practice, respectful to the traditions yet modern, creative and perhaps most importantly friendly and welcoming to everyone.
The next in the series of Yoga Live classes will take place on Sunday 3 May where Grace will be joined by Rosh Landa performing an eclectic range of earthy tabla rhythms. Book your tickets here – https://sagegateshead.com/seasons/yoga-live/
You can also find Grace on Instagram @gracejayyyy and she has a regular schedule of classes at Yoga Therapies.
About the author
Hannah Bullimore is a yoga teacher and writer from the North East. She teaches writing workshops for all ages and yoga classes for all abilities.
Follow her on Instagram @hannah_bullimorehttp://www.hannahbullimore.com