Julia Hartsell is a dancer, catalyst for soulful, earth-honoring community, a pioneer in the modern Hoop Dance movement and mama of The Flowjo, a sanctuary for dance, somatic, circus and healing arts in Carrboro, NC. Julia is a dance facilitator, ritualist and practitioner of ancestral lineage healing, weaving these practices in both ancient and revolutionary ways. With an animist worldview, her work is focused on reclaiming relational ways of living and ancient forms of medicine at the intersections of movement, and ritual in service of personal, ancestral and cultural healing. She is an Initiate of Osun in the Ifá/Òrìsà tradition of Yoruba West Africa.
A lifelong devotee of dance with a background in Religious Studies, Julia is passionate about ecstatic embodied improvisational expression. Over the past two decades, she has studied many modalities discovering the unique medicine available through movement, somatic and ritual technologies. Julia has been featured in several books on Hoop Dance and has traveled extensively to share her unique approach to hooping and to facilitate dance rituals. Trusting the body’s inherent wisdom and sacredness, she utilizes these diverse practices to help access the body’s intelligence and cellular memory for insight, emotional expression and transformation. Julia has been facilitating an ongoing ecstatic dance since 2011 and creating ritual dances and events that have anchored a multi-generational community at The Flowjo, a modern day temple. She has developed grief tending practices and techniques for individual and collective ancestralization dances and offers individual and group mentorship opportunities.