Individual Dancers at the 2017 Bolivian Festival in Manassas, VA / by Todd Henson

A member of Tinkus Bolivia, who performed a Tinkus dance. She saw me photographing and smiled for the camera.

Previously, I shared photographs of some of the dance groups at XXX Festival Boliviano, the 30th annual Bolivian Festival held at the Prince William County Fairgrounds in Manassas, Virginia on September 3, 2017. In this post I share photographs of many of the individual dancers during their performances.

Tinkus Bolivia performing a Tinkus dance.

An energetic move during a Tinkus dance performed by Tinkus Bolivia.

There were performers of all ages, including this young one from Morenada Central VA USA performing a Morenada dance.

Another young performer from Morenada Central VA USA performing a Morenada dance.

I loved watching the large groups perform moves in sync, all jumping or spinning together to the music. I admire the training and skill required to move as a group. But I also loved finding and photographing individuals, trying to capture the moves of a single person, showing their emotion and helping tell their story as a part of the group.

A performer from Embajadores del Folklore wore a beautiful flowing colorful dress while performing a Morenada dance.

Embajadores del Folklore included a lot of color, such as this performer during a Morenada dance.

I love this pose from a member of Fraternidad Alma Boliviana during their performance of a Tinkus dance, raising his arm and lifting his head towards the sun.

This member of Fraternidad Alma Boliviana showed such energy, jumping into the air during their performance of a Tinkus dance. Notice the water droplets to the side, splashed on the performers from folks walking alongside them, helping them cool down on the hot day.

I recall a few times when a performer saw me photographing and turned to smile for the camera. There is at least one photograph in this set like this. But most of these images were created during a performance while the person was focused on the dance.

A member of Embajadores del Folklore performing a Morenada dance.

A young performer from Fundacion Socio Cultural Diablada Boliviana, fully in costume and performing during a Wititi dance.

Some performers had full costumes, from head to toe, such as this member of Morenada Transpeco USA performing a Morenada dance.

It was a hot day and I have to imagine this performer from Embajadores del Folklore was feeling the heat while performing a Morenada dance in a full costume.

Despite the heat, these amazing groups continued to dance, including this performer from Morenada Bolivia USA during a Morenada dance.

The weather changed throughout the day. It began slightly overcast, which was great. It provided a nice soft light on the dancers, creating beautiful soft shadows. But before long the sky cleared resulting in direct sunlight illuminating the performers, casting a more harsh and well defined shadow. The sun stayed out most of the rest of the day, but occasionally a cloud would move in front of the sun and for a brief period we’d have softer light again.

There was such a diversity to the outfits, but they were all beautiful and full of color, including that of this young performer from Centro Cultural Bolivia during a Pujllay dance. Look closely to the right of her hat and you'll see a floating bubble. There were children on the sidelines blowing bubbles throughout the day.

A young member of Morenada Bolivia USA performs his moves during a Morenada dance.

I really don’t consider myself a people photographer. I spend far more time photographing nature: animals, insects, flowers, landscapes. But events like this make me realize I can also enjoy photographing people, especially in such candid, fluid settings, even though it can be challenging. I have much still to learn and that’s perhaps part of why I enjoy it.

The Caporales dance performed by Fraternidad Folklorica Bolivia included energetic jumps and costumes that reflected colored light into their faces when the sun shone on them. Direct sunlight is not always a bad thing.

So much color and so many smiling faces, including this performer from Morenada Bolivia USA performing a Morenada dance.

A performer from Tinkus San Simon USA performing a Tinkus dance.