Sacred Dance Guild offers many different programs as part of our commitment to advocate for dance as a sacred art, to promote dance as a means of spiritual growth and integration of mind, body and spirit and to create community. Some of these are regular programs such as Festivals, Sacred Dance Journeys, Videos, etc. which have their own pages on the Website. Other programs happen as the call arises! These are all showing on the Calendar of Events. This page has been added to highlight details of some of the current programs being offered or others that were offered in the past:
April 29, 2023 – June 3, 2023 – In this six-week adventure (one hour each week) we will learn to find our own sacred dance in the spaces around us. We will practice “being with” a place and our sensations and listening deeply. How does this place impact me? How does my body respond? And my soul? What comes alive in me? What movements emerge in dialogue with this space?
REGISTRATION NOW CLOSED
$80.00 SDG Members – $90.00 Non Members.
From Hiie to you! For each session I will ask you to find a particular place or element in the place around you, spend some time in that place, either dancing or simply noticing, listening, and being present. For example, the theme for one week could be “a body of water, such as a river, or the water element.” In our Zoom gatherings, we continue and deepen this journey by evoking the place through the imagination as we move and improvise. We will discuss and share, verbally and kinesthetically. I encourage participants to take photos or videos of these places and share them. Note: If you are unable to go to a space with the specific quality/element prior to any or all of the sessions, embrace your creative self – you can use a photograph, a memory or maybe a place in your own home!!
The aim of this series of workshops is to find a new sense of liveliness both in how you connect to our body and how you live in your city, town, village or neighborhood (and home). We will explore how the place and the body animate each other and awaken our senses through movement and the imagination. We will learn to connect to the sacred in the body and the sacred in the places around us and express this sacredness in our own unique ways. We hone our intuition, kinesthetic intelligence, expressivity, and empathy for the nonverbal living world around
- If you are unable to go to a space with the specific quality/element prior to any of the sessions, embrace your creative self – use a photograph, a memory or maybe find a place in your own home!!
- Engage a friend, family member, neighbour in the exploration! Take someone on the journey with you each week as part of the process of discovery.
- All sessions will be recorded and accessible to participants each Saturday after the session.
Hiie SAUMAA (PhD, Columbia University) is a somatic movement educator and a dance writer. Originally from Estonia, she is currently based in Paris. She teaches online and in-person classes in Nia dance, holistic strength and flexibility, and creative movement. She writes about dance, somatics, holistic movement and wellbeing, and the creative process for the journal of Integrative and Complementary Therapies, among others. Her mission is to help people connect to the transformative power of dance and discover movement practices that teach us about our inner and outer worlds. See https://www.hiiesaumaa.com/
Humankind had it’s birth when the Trinity Movement Choir performed at the 2018 Parliament of the Worlds Religions in Toronto, Canada. Featured speakers at that event described in horrifying detail the explosion of displaced people throughout the world and their desperate attempts to find new homes. We resolved then to create a dance experience that would lead the performers and audience through the quest of these people and into an accepting, inclusive society enriched by their diversity. In 2020 the pandemic intervened and the Movement Choir expanded internationally, performing full seasons of new works on line in partnership with the Sacred Dance Guild with members from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States. In September of 2022 the Trinity Movement Choir and the Sacred Dance Guild partnered in an in person performance of Humankind held at St. Paul’s Chapel in New York City on September 22, 2022.
Centering the dance is a red silk circular cloth 30 feet in diameter that demonstrates our underlying believe that what happens to some of us happens to us all. In the cloth nobody can move without impacting everyone else. The cloth itself represents the established community – connected, harmonious and, at the beginning, closed to outsiders! Through the dance we see and experience transformation.
The music, created by Debbie Danbrook, uses only the human voice, with no recognizable words so as not to be tied to any national or ethnic group – but to all humans.!
See see a recording of this performance click HERE.
September 16 & 17, 2022 – WONDERFUL NEWS!!! Finally, the Sacred Dance Guild held an “in person” event! This was a small group retreat held mostly out doors at the awesome Satori Center for Nature and Forest Therapy in Marlow, New Hampshire with the creator/director of the Center and long time Sacred Dance Guild facilitator, Dianne Eno!
Satori (悟り) is a Japanese Buddhist term for awakening, “comprehension; understanding” derived from the Japanese verb satoru. In the Zen Buddhist tradition, satori refers to a deep experience of “kenshō”, “seeing into one’s true nature”. Ken means “seeing,” shō means “nature” or “essence”.
We personally and collectively engaged in “kenshō” as we gathered on Friday evening with refreshments on the terrace and then begin our exploration of our internal and external Mandala Pathways centering ourselves and breathing in the space as we come together in community ending with a Candlelight Moving Mandala.
On Saturday, following a continental gathering breakfast, Dianne Eno led us through a morning Forest Bathing experience as we explore the Embodied Forest and the Sacred Spaces. We moved through the day with movement, dance and visual arts, including a simple lunch.
Some of our weekend explorations of “Embodied Forest, Sacred Space—Mandala Pathways” included:
- Satori Loop Exercise
- Moving Mandala experience
- Lighting of the Candle Mandala
- Embodied Scan
- A “worry” stone ritual and Indigenous acknowledgement
- Pleasures of Presence – sensory check in
- “Sit-Spot” exercise
- A “Solo Sensory Exploration” experience
- “Dialoguing with Trees” using dance/movement as language
- Create a personal mandala “Offering to the Forest”
- “Tea Ceremony” with foraged tea
- Create a “woven” Mandala (possible guest dancer/textile artist Kris McClanahan)
- Cloud Study Embodiment Exercise
- Counsel Circle times to share
$120.00 (SDG Members – $130 Non Members) – included all workshops, refreshments and art supplies.
We are very blessed to have this be the Sacred Dance Guild’s first on line multi week program organized and sponsored by the SDG and facilitated by a Sacred Dance Guild approved facilitator.
The Moving Through Grief program with Tricia mary Lee (from her home in Tapau, New Zealand – very recently moved from Australia) took place for 8 weeks from March 31st to May 19, 2022. This Sacred Dance Guild journey through the landscape of Grief, [which may be personal or collective, old or new], took place within the confidentiality of a small group and from the comfort of each person’s own “home and heart” space via the blessings of Zoom.
“Moving through Grief” offered you a weekly Sacred Retreat of time and focus to recognize, explore, reflect, connect, release, revalue, rediscover and recreate your personal dance with Grief. In Divine surrender and through the grace of Great Love we embrace both the dark and the light of our transformational “Sole to Soul” journey ”
The sessions were each be 1.5 hours in length and took place on line on Thursday evenings (7:30 pm EDT)/Friday mornings (NZDT) beginning with an Introductory session on March 24th, 2022 (so March 25th for those in NZDT) and then continuing with a deep dive for 8 consecutive weeks ending May 19th/20th, 2022. This program was open to all who feel called.
The cost for the program was $125.00 US for all 9 sessions with a maximum of 12 participants. Limited partial or full scholarships may be available for those in financial need – contact email@example.com
NOTE: This program followed a pilot that was offered by Tricia to a small group in 2021. See comments from some of those participants:
“I felt that I could use the time to engage in my feelings of grief. Sometimes I wouldn’t come in with anything in my thoughts, but through the dance and your process and words, something would arise and be revealed. So it was a mixture of conscious intentions and unconscious intention so coming from a gut level.” “Through it all I was able to have the space to feel the grief deeply. I also really appreciated the common journey between all of those present“
“I found the journey both intensely personal at times, at others time very collective and sometimes a sort of integrated experience. Just being intentional for one hour a week in a supportive and safe environment with others is incredibly healing and helpful. The journey feels much less lonely in many ways.” “I discovered that opening to the experience, while with the concept of grief at the outset, moved into a much more wholistic life experience reflecting on many aspects of living on the planet in the most balanced way possible.”
“Much appreciation Tricia, for your facilitation and guidance in a transformation process of healing, both from a personal journey perspective, but also from what occurs as a collective. “ “I became aware of different layers and connections to grief (loss, regret, sadness, hurt, pain, trauma…). In some cases, it might have been something someone else in the group said or shared, that was a catalyst for an ‘a-ha’ moment or a recognition of a feeling that resonates with what is being expressed and is also part of my story, or part of me.”
Beginning in March 2020, the Sacred Dance Guild hosted a weekly on line gathering to be “Socially Present” while “Physically Distant“ during the unexpected time of the Pandemic in our personal, collective and global experience! These “live from our living room sessions” are free, informal, intimate and interactive sharings open to 30 (or so!) participants who want to connect in this way. Members and other supporters facilitate each session as their gift to all of us to continue to connect in community and to dance together.
UPDATE – June 2022 – With our in person activities resuming and all of us enjoying the great outdoors we are moving our Sacred Sunday to a monthly format – generally the second Sunday of the month – but do watch the calendar to find exact dates! Check out the EVENT calendar to see both past and future Sacred Sundays!
During the 2021-22 year, as all of us were exploring and expanding our connections during this personal, collective and worldwide experience we wanted to extend the conversation and reflection on the question “Is THIS Sacred Dance?” as far and wide as possible – both from a physical perspective but also from a philosophical perspective. What does “fit” under this umbrella we call Sacred Dance? We have realized that some people have an understanding when they hear that term it means something specifically “religious”, others think of a particular type of dance, such as Sacred Circle Dancing, and everything in between! We decided to throw open our virtual doors and invite panelists from a wide range of backgrounds, experience and understandings to have a conversation and invite others to sit around the table with us.
- Feb. 20, 2021 – The first Conversation/Panel was held February 21st with the focus on Sacred Dance through Social Justice, Differing Abilities, Environment, Community and Ancestral Dreams. See the information on panelists HERE and the recording of the panel HERE.
- June 29, 2021 – For the 2nd panel we moved to specific faith and spiritual expressions and explored them from the perspective of individuals who are part of the North American mosaic. See the information on panelists HERE and the recording of the panel HERE.
- November 20, 2021 – For the 3rd panel the focus shifted to “Healing” – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. See the information on panelists HERE and the recording of the panel HERE.