Interview: Ann Connolly
During some of the few relaxed moments in the past 2013 UK National Yoyo Contest I had the chance to interview Ann Connolly. Born in Washington in 1992, she was member of YoyoJam from 2005 to 2009 and since then she has been a YoYoFactory ProTeam member.
US National Best Female Award in 2009, 2010 and 2011, she’s spent her last 2 years traveling and knowing the best destinations in the world of yoyoing.
Why have you decided to make a break in your Computer Science studies to travel around the world?
Well, I went to the univesity for one year and I realised that I was wasting my money so I decided to travel for a while because I knew that this way I could also develop my yoyoing. YoYoFactory has helped me a lot in this sense doing demostrations around the world. As I kept reciveing offers it just continued for the past two years. I was considering to stop after this year, but I’m not: I am certain that I will go back to school, but for know I’m enjoying this period a lot.
So you’re thinking about settleing in the USA after this?
I’m actually considering to continue my studies in Prague. Not only because it is the heart of yoyoing in Europe, but because I really like the city. The people and the athmosphere.
During these two years you’ve travel and visited many different countries. Wich one is the one that make you think ‘I would live here’?
With no doubt the city I enjoy the most is Prague in the Czech Republic. But the country I love the most would be Japan. I speak japanese, I studied it for years, and I really love the food, the culture… I always get exited when I have the chance to go.
As a professional player sponsored by YoYoFactory, do you get a regular salary or do they play you all your traveling costs? How does it work for you?
I actually pay most of my traveling, but it is of course a job and I get payed for it. I have a contract with them and they help me every time I need help, like when I do demostrations for them or I’m on tour.
Back into what yoyoing really is about, what elements you’re not still confident enough to incorporate them on your freestyles?
I been trying to work on armtricks with lots of regens, because sometimes doing certain binds or regens can be really risky. I feel pretty solid with my horizontal play right now, but it’s different when you do something on stage or off stage. Doing a good regen and beeing able to pull of a full combo after it is really hard to do.
Where does Ann Connolly see herself in the next, let’s say, 5 years?
I don’t even know where I am going to be tomorrow, I don’t know where I’m sleeping tomorrow! [laughs]. I just try to take each day at a time. In 5 years maybe I’ll be studing, maybe I’ll be married or maybe living in a different country. I’m really not very concerned about that, I more focus about today, that’s how I live it now.
How is your relationship with the rest of your team members, living far away from each other?
YoYoFactory is really a family to me. I mean, of course I don’t live close to them by any means, but we do stay in contact a lot and we know what’s going on in our lifes. With Facebook we stay really conected and I feel very close to them.
Thanks a lot for your time Ann, I hope we can meet again.
Sure, thank you. I think I’ll be traveling more because thing keep poping up, and actually I may go to Spanish National. In Paris I had the chance to meet Daniel Tamariz and he told me about it. It’s is not 100% sure, but I may be there. Let’s see if we can make it happen!