“The redwoods, once seen, leave a mark or create a vision that stays with you always. No one has ever successfully painted or photographed a redwood tree. The feeling they produce is not transferable. From them comes silence and awe. It’s not only their unbelievable stature, nor the color which seems to shift and vary under your eyes, no, they are not like any trees we know, they are ambassadors from another time.” -John Steinbeck
Do you have a vision of something you want to create? Is it a vision that you know is going to take all the love you can give, every day of your life, for as long as you live…??? My sister-in-law Coni has such a vision. Her vision is to have redwood trees growing in her garden in Maur, Switzerland. I have been visiting with my sister-in-law in recent weeks and took these photographs of her redwoods.
One of the trees is now seven feet tall and firmly established in her garden. The others are tiny and still live in a flower pot outside her kitchen. I marvel as I see her love for these plants in action. In the flower pots where the tiny trees are growing are shells and rocks she brought back from the Pacific coast. She tells me that this way, the baby trees will feel more at home in the flower pot. She talks to her plants, making sure they have enough moisture. As my brother says, “These plants are her pride and joy.” To watch a moving short film showing the majesty and power of the trees that have captured my sister-in-law’s heart click here.
I am deeply inspired by Coni and “her redwood project” and have been considering the projects that Viriditas Productions is involved in and how yes… they require love, dedication and faith.
One of our projects, Tap Into Transformation, is now firmly established, much like Coni’s little seven foot tall tree. In November of this year we will be launching our 6th year of this community tap dancing event! On May 19th we created a choreography to one of my favorite songs of all time: “Here Come The Sun”…yes, you guessed it, we danced to a Beatles Tune. Here is a photograph of our dancers with David from that night. Yours truly climbed up on a bar stool to take the shot. We had two participants who drove all the way down from Greeley, Colorado. I promptly named them the Greeley Goddesses! Our delicious dinner was catered by our neighboring Mexican restaurant Wapos, and for those who are wondering, we did serve margaritas…smile. Our next Tap Into Transformation will be on Friday, June 23rd, and our theme is “Calling All Angels”. I especially encourage all of you who are feeling defeated by the turbulent times we live in to attend. Check out these powerful lyrics we will be dancing to:
“I need a sign to let me know you’re here ‘Cause my TV set just keeps it all from being clear I want a reason for the way things have to be I need a hand to help build up some kind of hope inside of me
And I’m calling all angels I’m calling all you angels…” (Train Music)
And to all of you who join me in a powerful connection to Archangel Michael…you are going to love the activity we will be doing in the second half of the evening! Be sure to come. Click here to purchase your ticket, today!
I consider my Doctor Of The Soul work to be much like Coni’s little trees in the flower pot. I launched this work in November of 2016, and on June 3rd we had our 8th group event: Healing With Mantra. In the Healing With Mantra events, I teach how to use mantra to help you reduce stress, enhance your emotional well being and optimize the flow of energy within your body. This month we invoked sacred energy through the channel of a mantra that invoked the Hindu God Krishna. Krishna is the god of compassion, tenderness and love. We connected this energy to our fourth chakra, the heart chakra, as we dislodged and released all negative energy associated with this chakra. During the session I invited the participants to write down the hurts they were feeling and wanting to release on an index card. After the session I did a ritual where I burned the cards and then released the ashes above the creek behind my house. Here is a photo of me releasing the ashes. The next Doctor of The Soul group session will be Healing With St. Hildegard on July 1st. I will be using St. Hildegard’s powerful song “O Frondens Virga” in our soul healing process. I am also available for private sessions. Click hereto find out more.
The part of the Viriditas work that is connected to the performing arts continues with my participation in the Kutandara Marimba Ensemble. In July I will be studying privately with Jesse Larson, one of the most powerful and skilled marimba players I know. She will be teaching me two new songs and helping me get ready to perform in the fall. Click here to enjoy Jesse playing “Moyo Wangu” (one of the songs I will be learning) with Kutandara. She is the marimba player in the brown shirt on the front marimba.
Finally, I want to describe the fine tuning that is happening in a part of the work that is still very much in the vision phase. As you know I have been asked to teach at the Fox Institute, a new graduate school that will be opening its doors this fall in Boulder. The opening dates needed to be pushed back to October due to some gorgeous renovations that are being undertaken to transform the buildings. I am now scheduled to teach two classes on St. Hildegard as well as two classes together with David: “Chanting The Wisdom Traditions” as well as “Introduction to Creation Spirituality”. I begin with The St. Hildegard Classes on November 13th. I have also been asked to join the academic leadership team of the school. I am in the midst of deep discernment regarding what exactly the vision is for my work with the Fox Institute. I trust clarity will come in the months ahead, and I will keep you posted.
I close with a request. What are the visions that are living in your heart? In what stages of development are they? I would love to hear about them. Please send me a message letting me into your world of visions! Let’s inspire each other.
I’m singing in the rain, just singing in the rain.
What a glorious feelin’, I’m happy again.
I’m laughing at clouds, so dark up above.
The sun’s in my heart, and I’m ready for love.
Let the stormy clouds chase, everyone from the place.
Come on with the rain, I’ve a smile on my face.
I walk down the lane, with a happy refrain
Just singin’, singin’ in the rain…”
These are some of the lyrics to the song “Singing In The Rain” which Gene Kelly made famous as he sang it while tap dancing in the pouring rain in the movie “Singing In The Rain” oh so many years ago. This scene has always been one of my constant companions. No matter what is going on in my life, I keep the focus on “the sun in my heart”. It is the energy of unconditional love which yes “keeps me dancing” even in the pouring rain. Whenever I feel the stormy clouds up above, I imagine being Gene Kelly and powerfully dancing away! And yes, we have had a lot of very rainy days here in Boulder recently. And in the midst of them Viriditas Productions has been “dancing away” sending forth waves of unconditional love.
Drum roll…… talk about expressing unconditional love…. The dates are now set for the opening of the Fox Institute in Boulder. The school will be housed in the First Congregational Church. The First Congregational Church has always been a big advocate of the arts here in Boulder. David and I actually tap danced there last year as part of the opening reception of the NoBo Art District’s Annual Group Show. Classes will begin on September 18th, and I will be teaching two classes on St. Hildegard of Bingen that week. Given that St. Hildegard’s feast day is September 17th, I have no doubt that our powerful friend is overseeing this entire venture! David and I will be participating in an informational Fox Institute Webinar on May 20th . We will be talking about two fundamental components of the Fox Institute Curriculum: The Mystics as well as Art As Meditation. Please contact me if you would like information on how to join the webinar.
Another vehicle for expressing unconditional love continues with Healing With St. Hildegard. We hosted our fourth session on May 6th at the Viriditas Studio. It was an especially heart warming event for me personally because my best friend in the world, Renate Lienhart, was visiting from Switzerland that week and attended the event. Renate and I have known each other for over 40 years. To have her present and experiencing this healing work made that “sun in my heart” shine even brighter. Our focus for the session was to connect to the healing and compassionate love of Mary, the Mother Of God, using St. Hildegard’s famous song: O Virga Ac Diadema. Mary’s love is so tender, sweet and comforting. For those of you who would like to experience a taste of the session, please become a member of the Free Healing Library on the Doctor Of The Soul website and enjoy the meditations that David and I have recorded. I will be posting a meditation from our most recent session next week.(Click here for the Free Healing Library.)
Finally here is the update on the tap dancing that has graced the Viriditas Studio. On April 21st David and I hosted Tap Into Transformation and taught the choreography to, YES!, Singing In The Rain. You should have seen the smile on my face when it started raining that night. After dinner, we created life size drawings of ourselves dancing in the rain… telling each other about those things in our lives that bring us joy. I always am amazed at the beautiful souls that show up for Tap Into Transformation. There is something about tap dancing that attracts such fun-loving people. I truly believe that Tap Into Transformation has become the best dinner party in Boulder, Colorado. If you haven’t yet given it a try…. GO FOR IT this coming week. We will be dancing to another one of my favorites: Here Comes The Sun by the Beatles. Another option for those of you who want to give tap dancing a try, is to come by the studio on the first Friday of the month. David and I are now regularly participating in the NoBo First Friday Open House Event. This past Friday night between 6-9 pm over twenty people came by the studio and we had so much fun dancing with them. It’s free, and I guarantee you will leave the studio smiling and even feeling a bit like Gene Kelly!
As I look at the weather forecast it seems that going forward here in Boulder, the Sun is coming to grace our lives. I look forward to the rest of May and potting many beautiful flowers for my garden. On June 5th, I leave with my fifteen year old son on our annual mother-son odyssey. Like last year we will be going to New York City, Switzerland and London, England. I will be writing my next newsletter while in Switzerland and yes I will be sharing some gorgeous photographs!
What does it mean to be Self-Confident? As I asked myself this question recently, the following song came to mind:
“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine!”
And suddenly I remembered being at my youngest brother Michael’s wedding about ten years ago. My brother had asked me to sing the Ave Maria at his wedding. Oh my, was I a nervous wreck the day of the wedding, as I stood on the balcony of this gorgeous baroque church in central Switzerland and looked at the hundreds of people coming in down below. How could I possibly sing with all these people listening? And then this gospel choir that my brother had hired to sing at the wedding came on to the balcony and started singing… yes… you guessed it…THIS LITTLE LIGHT OF MINE! This was exactly what I needed to be singing to dispel the nervous energy and negative thoughts going through my head. And so I sang along with the glorious gospel singers and sure enough as I got up to sing the Ave Maria, I knew all I needed to do was let my light shine.
For me Self-Confidence is our ability to let our Divine Nature and Gifts shine out into the world. This “Light” is a powerfully loving and transformative light and we all have it! And this light has been shining forth from the “Land of Viriditas” big time this past month.
On March 18th the Kutandara Center hosted a concert to raise funds to purchase a set of marimbas for an orphanage in Zimbabwe. I was honored to be part of the concert. I am a member of the Kutandara Reperatory Ensemble and we opened the concert with six of our songs. Check out this video to see us playing Ndave Kuenda. (Click hereto watch the video.) We let our light shine that night, and the next day when I saw comments on my Facebook page coming all the way from Zimbabwe, I knew it had been an especially bright light that we sent forth that night!
The light being sent forth by our Tap Dancing Events is also growing in brightness. On March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day, we hosted our monthly Tap Into Transformation. There were ten of us dancing to some glorious boogie woogie music and enjoying a delicious meal catered by The Hungry Toad. After dinner we had a great time playing charades with words that embody power and speed. You should have seen my rendition of a rocket ship!
And then last Friday, April 7th, David and I participated in the monthly NoBo Art District’s First Friday open house. We had over 50 people stop by the studio and most of them dove right in and tried some tap dancing. We felt like we were at a delightful night club celebrating the joy and power of this glorious dance form. The word is getting out that some great fun can be had at the Viriditas Studio on the first Friday of the month between 6 and 9 pm. Tell your friends!!!
Self-Confidence was the theme of our third Healing With Mantra Event which happened on April 8th. I taught a mantra connected to the aspects of Divinity represented by the Hindu Deity Durga. David’s musical accompaniment made the experience of chanting this mantra especially powerful. I also added specific movements that we did as we chanted. Later this week I will be posting a recording of this mantra in the Free Healing Library on the doctorofthesoul website (doctorofthesoul.com) for those of you who missed the event and/or would like to chant along at home.
David and I are also very excited that we have been asked to become faculty at a new graduate school that will be opening its doors this coming September 18th here in Boulder Colorado. The school is called the Fox Institute and is a reinvention of the graduate school where David and I got our doctorates in Ministry: The University Of Creation Spirituality. (Click here to find out more about this amazing school. I will be teaching a course on St. Hildegard of Bingen and David will be teaching a course on Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Howard Thurman! We have also submitted proposals for five other classes which were accepted by the academic committee. I will keep you posted as the exact dates of our classes get finalized. The model of this education was created by the theologian Matthew Fox. My favorite part of the curriculum is called “Art As Meditation” and yes, one of the classes David and I will be teaching is “Tap Into Transformation”!
All right, my powerful friends, I once again am off to pack my bag. David and I are leaving for Keystone on Friday morning. They still have over 60 inches of snow up there, and oh my, is my Swiss Mountain Goat heart happy….I am going to let my Swiss light shine this coming weekend. Yo do lei di hoo!!!
This month I would like to start by asking you a very powerful question: What is your Rupertsberg? Let me explain. Rupertsberg is the name of the first monastery St. Hildegard of Bingen created in 1150, after leaving the monastery at Disibodenberg where she had lived for over forty years. It became the home out of which St. Hildegard created all of the beautiful work which we now enjoy and benefit from over 900 years later. What is the home out of which you are creating your life?
My “Rupertsberg” is my amazing home in North Boulder. I feel incredibly held by the beauty and comfort of this home. Many nights I am cooking a delicious and nourishing meal in my kitchen on the ground floor as I listen while my son Joshua shares his latest composition. Most nights I enjoy a relaxing epsom salt – candle light bath. I also have an office with three walls of bookshelves and my computer where I write these newsletters. And so I ask you….What structure have you created or are you creating where you nourish and manifest your soul’s purpose?
“What is your Rupertsberg?” is the question I asked at the most recent Healing With St. Hildegard event at the Viriditas Studio. The group shared some very beautiful and inspiring answers to this question. I then taught the group three chants based on St. Hildegard’s song O Jerusalem. We used the chants to bring light and love to what we are creating in our lives as well as to help remove any obstacles we are facing. For those of you who were unable to attend the event, I will be uploading the chants with the instructions on how to use them in your life next week on to the Free Healing Library on the Doctor Of The Soul Website. Click here to join the library. To register all you need to do is type in an email address and a password. You will then have access to the pages of the library.
I now want to give you the update about the beautiful work that David and I did this past month. For starters we had a glorious time with Tap Into Transformation and Tap Into Love on February 17th and 18th. The folks that came to experience the latest Michael Jackson inspired choreography we taught at Tap Into Transformation were incredibly fun-loving and outgoing. We ended the evening by each sharing a tap move that we especially love, and David strung them all together to create a unique group dance. I know MJ was smiling down on us, reminding us that “It is all for LOVE!”
And the LOVE kept flowing the next night at Tap Into Love. David and I want to thank all of you who attended this performance (and a special thank you to those of you who took advantage of the combo package!) It is such a blessing to share our latest choreography and music with such a loving and appreciative group of people. For me this performance was especially nourishing because it connected me with my parents and three of my aunts, all of whom have inspired my artistic life. The photo below is my father playing the boogie woogie.
And then one week later David and I performed in front of a packed crowd in the Canyon Gallery of the Boulder Public Library as part of the Opening Reception of the Annual NoBo Art District Group Show. The greatest joy of this performance for me was singing Let The Love Flow with David. We created this song for the Performance Piece Feathers On The Breath Of God in 2011. What a treat to sing it again and this time with David. The song was a perfect song to use as a way to celebrate all the artists contributing to this stunning exhibit. The song as well as the entire sound track of Feathers On The Breath Of God is available for purchase on my website for those of you who would like to enjoy it. If you ever have an extra hour in downtown Boulder, go by the Library and enjoy the exhibit. It will be on display all month.
Looking ahead to March 18th, I want to give you details about the Benefit Concert that the Kutandara Reperatory Marimba Ensemble that I am part of will be performing in. The concert will be with Tendai Muparutsa & ZiMBiRA, and they are amazing musicians. Please join us!
Saturday, March 18, 2017 @ 7:30 pm
St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal Church @ 4775 Cambridge Street in Boulder, Colorado 80301
$10 individual/$20 family suggested donation at the door; food and drink available for purchase.
Make a donation for Child Future Africa at the door! Sponsored by Kutandara Center and Rubatano. Child Future Africa supports children by buying school supplies, paying school fees, promoting income-generating activities, and operating an orphanage for destitute children. In 2015, Rubatano implemented an mbira program, at Child Future Africa, and together Kutandara and Rubatano plan to begin a marimba program with the donation of a set of marimbas when a group from the Kutandara Center travels to Zimbabwe in June 2017. All proceeds from this concert will support the building and delivery of the marimbas to the orphans at Child Future Africa.
Finally….yes, the ski adventures of Jeannine and David continue this coming weekend at Breckenridge. Skiing has become a central part of our lives. We are experiencing such power and speed coming together in our bodies as we fly down the slopes of our amazing Colorado ski resorts. There is a renewed energy in our lives and this combination of speed and power will be a central part of our next Tap Into Transformation….more on that front in a few weeks!
So keep “letting the LOVE flow” and yeah…write me a note about your Rupertsberg.
February… the month of LOVE! I want to start this newsletter by sharing my favorite spiritual text on love: yes 1 Corinthians 13, verses 4-7:
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
The power of love never ceases to amaze me. And so I want to share with you the many ways that Viriditas is sharing love these days and invite you to connect with the many offerings of this beautiful company.
David and I are currently rehearsing for our annual multimedia performance Tap Into Love which will take place at the Viriditas Studio on the evening of February 18th from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm. Click here to view the promotional video we created for this heartwarming event! This year we are celebrating our connections to our ancestors. I will be showing how both of my parents as well as my father’s three(!) sisters have been sources of inspiration and joy in my life. If you attend only one Viriditas event all year, this would be my recommendation. Delicious food, great company and a performance that will fill you with joy, tenderness and yes LOVE! Purchase your tickets today! Click hereto purchase tickets.
Tap Into Transformation continues to bring “food, fun and friendship” to participants on the third Friday of every month. In January we danced to the song “You’re The One That I Want” from the movie Grease. The colors of the evening were black, white and gold and we all wore black and gold beads as we followed the fun choreography. After dinner we created drawings of what we wanted in the year 2017. As always, I felt so blessed to share the evening with such beautiful and warm people. This month we will be bringing back our Michael Jackson choreography with a new twist. So, all you Michael Jackson fans….JOIN US on February 17th. (Click here to purchase tickets.)
On February 24th, David and I will once again be performing as part of the Opening Reception of the 7th Annual NoBo Group Show. The Art Show, “Looking for Common Ground: A Collaboration” will take place at the Boulder Public Library Main Branch, Canyon Gallery, 1101 Arapahoe Ave. from 6:00pm – 9:00pm. Mark your calendars! There are some incredibly gifted artists in North Boulder and this is your chance to see their work all in one show. David and I will be singing and tap dancing our greatest hits and would love to see you there.
Looking ahead to March 18th, I am very excited to let you know that the Kutandara Repertory Marimba Ensemble that I am part of will be performing as part of a Benefit Concert for Child Future Africaat St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal Church, 4775 Cambridge Street in Boulder, Colorado 80301. The concert is at 7:00 pm, and we will be performing with Tendai Muparutsa & ZiMBIRA. You can make a donation for Child Future Africa at the door. If you have never heard marimba music, you are in for a treat. The JOY of this music is unparalleled!
Finally, I want to encourage those of you who have not yet checked out the Free Healing Library on the doctorofthesoul website, to give yourself the gift and register. There are now two pages you can access at the Library with beautiful recordings and guidances on how to use them in your meditative practices. Next week I will be adding a recording of the Saraswati mantra from the Doctor Of The Soul group event from February 4th. Click hereto join the library. To register all you need to do is type in an email address and a password. You will then have access to the pages of the library.
I will leave you now with one more image. David and I leave on Friday morning for our monthly retreat in the mountains. This month we will be in Vail. What a blessing it is to spend four whole days with this loving man in such powerfully loving mountains!
Happy New Year; 2017, here we go! Some of you have spoken to me in recent weeks about your concerns for our country and the world, given the results of our most recent elections. When fear and worry come up for me, I always find solace and strength when I refocus on creating goodness, beauty and joy. In this newsletter I want to highlight the goodness, beauty and joy that Viriditas Productions is about these days.
My work with Doctor of the Soul continues. I hosted the second group event in the series, Healing with St. Hildegard, on Jan. 7th. During the afternoon our group was immersed in St. Hildegard’s song, O Viridissima Virga (Oh, Greenest Of Branches). We let the music go deep into our Souls, deep into the soil of the garden that is our lives. I often refer to our Souls as the soil of our gardens, and on Saturday, I encouraged participants to let the soils of their gardens become moist and loose with the music and words of St. Hildegard’s music.
In the moistness, I invited the participants to do the following:
1. See yourself becoming the greenest branch and notice what comes up for you.
2. In this song, St. Hildegard talks about a beautiful flower blooming on the branch. I asked the participants to find the beautiful flower blooming in them.
3. We focused on joy. I asked the group “What does joy look like for you?”
After the immersion in the music, the group spent time writing and drawing. This month I invited the group to share with each other what they had drawn and written. We were all moved and strengthened by the expressions of people’s souls.
Next month the Doctor Of The Soul group event will be Healing with Mantra on Feb. 4th . The focus will be on a mantra which helps us release the issues connected to the second chakra. Our next St. Hildegard event will be on March 4th and will feature St. Hildegard’s song, Oh Jerusalem. Mark your calendars!
Next week I will be adding a recording of O Viridisimma Virga to the free healing library on the Doctor of the Soul website. When you join the library not only will you have access to the recording but you will also receive my guidance on how to use the recording in your spiritual practice. CLICK HERE to join the library. To register all you need to do is type in an email address and a password. You will then have access to the pages of the library. The recording of the Ganesh Mantra with my guidance for how to use it which we used in December’s Healing With Mantra is currently available.
David and I continue to create our monthly Tap Into Transformation. On December 16th we hosted our Holiday event. How precious it was to see all of our tap dancers in their Santa hats enjoying the music, the dancing, the company and yes our Christmas Sharpettes!
Our theme for January’s Tap Into Transformation will be “You’re The One That I Want” What is it you want in 2017? Come express your intentions through your feet and whole bodies. Wear black, gold and white and get ready to go for it! David and I had a total blast filming the dance yesterday. Stay tuned… you will have access to the video in next week’s promo flier!
Looking ahead into February, I want to remind you that you will have two opportunities to experience David and me as we share our artistic creations. On February 18th David and I will be offering our third rendition (!) of our performance piece Tap Into Love. Attending this event is a wonderful way to celebrate Valentine’s Day. In addition we will also be participating in the annual NoBo Art District Group Show on February 24th at the Boulder Public Library. We are going to perform our revamped Michael Jackson tap dance at both events. You wanted more of this choreography and now it is coming!
OK dear Viriditas lovers…. I am off to pack my bag. David and I leave tomorrow morning for our monthly ski retreat. This month we will be in Keystone. Ahhh…the joy of being on my skis in countless feet of snow in the spectacular Rocky Mountains… wheeeee!!!
Tis the season of gift giving, and in this newsletter I have a few gifts for you! As most of you already know, I have launched a new body of work which I’m calling Doctor of the Soul. There are two series of group events. Healing with St. Hildegard started in November and Healing with Mantra started this month on Dec. 3rd. We began the Healing with Mantra series by learning a mantra to help us release any patterns of fear related to security and safety connected to our first chakra. The energy of the event on December 3rd was very sweet and powerful. Please CLICK HERE to enjoy the audio recording of the mantra David and I created. I encourage you to chant along with me on this recording. It will help you have more confidence and bring empowerment to your life in all your undertakings.
Going forward, the next group event on January 7, 2017 will feature St. Hildegard’s song, O Viridissima Virga in our Soul Healing work. Our focus will be gathering strength so we can move forward with our callings to be creative expressions of Divine Love. A great way to start the New Year!
My next gift to you is a video inviting you to come to our Tap Into Transformation on Dec. 16th, 7-9 pm. Our theme is Christmas Dreams. When you come, be sure to wear your Santa hat! David and I will be gifting everyone who comes that night with a gift certificate for you to give to a friend to attend a Tap Into Transformation event in 2017. A $25 value! (Click the image below to view the video.)
For those of you in our community who are Sharpette lovers the second half of the evening will feature Christmas Sharpettes! Like in years past, the fare will include Swiss Chocolates. I smile as I realize how the chocolates have become a Christmas Tradition at Tap Into Transformation!
Now I want to tell you about what has been one of the greatest gifts I have received this year. As most of you know, I have been studying marimba and most recently mbira at the Kutandara Center in Boulder. This year my teachers Randy & Amy McIntosh asked if I’d ever thought about teaching at the center. I had not… But when I started to think about it, I found myself getting very excited. Playing African music has given me a sense of joy unlike anything else I have ever done. Amy, Randy and I explored how to move forward to becoming a teacher at the center and we decided that I would start by sitting in on their beginning classes. It is an incredible privilege to watch and experience master teachers at work. On Thursdays at 4 pm I am part of Amy’s beginning class for children. At 5:45 pm I’m part of Randy’s beginning adult class. In Randy’s class I am learning how to accompany the students, all of whom are women, on the Hosho. After Randy’s adult class, I then move over to my own beloved class: Titandare. On Thursdays at 9:30 pm when I leave the Kutandara Center and drive home, it feels like I’ve spent 6 hours on the African continent. The best way I can describe it is, it feels like I’ve had a mini vacation and I return to my life here in Boulder with renewed energy.
In closing, I would like to give you a heads up about two gifts you can look forward to in 2017. On February 18th David and I will once again be offering our performance piece Tap Into Love. This year we will be celebrating our love of our ancestors. Mark your calendars! In addition we will also be participating in the annual NoBo Art District group show on February 24th. Yes, you will get to see the latest addition to our Michael Jackson choreography! This year’s art show will be hosted at the Boulder Public Library.
I trust you are all enjoying the snowy weather. David and I leave today for three days of skiing at Beaver Creek… Wheeeeee… This Swiss lady is so excited!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to each and every one of you.
It’s the month of Thanksgiving. This year there’s a lot to be grateful for in the Land Of Viriditas. The decision David and I made to split our participation in the NoBo 1st Friday event and our Tap Into Transformation event was a good one. We hosted our first NoBo 1st Friday on Nov. 4th. Six people visited the studio. While it took a little convincing on the part of yours truly, four of the visitors put on tap shoes and joined David and me on the dance floor. We put on some Michael Jackson and had a great time. I do believe we’ll be seeing some of these folks at our next Tap Into Transformation on Nov. 18th. It was wonderful for David and me to focus 100% on our visitors and to tell them all about the adventures that happen at the Viriditas Studio.
It’s clear to me that the artistic community in North Boulder is alive and well. I’m looking forward to hosting the NoBo Art District Mixer on Dec. 7th in the studio. This will give me a chance to share the beautiful Viriditas Studio with other artists in the district and to begin to get to know them more deeply.
Perhaps the thing I’m most grateful for is the never-ending creativity that flows through David and me. We will be launching our fifth year of Tap Into Transformation this month. Click on the image below to view the promo video for our November 18th event. I’ve always loved the Kung Fu Panda movies as well as the theme song. David has two black belts, and one is in Kung Fu. We had a total blast creating this dance, and we can hardly wait to share it with you! Rest assured, I will have headbands for each of you! (Click here to purchase your tickets and receive a $5 discount.)
Gratitude fills my heart when I contemplate the launching of my Doctor Of The Soul events last Saturday. The event launched the first of a seven-part series using the music of St. Hildegard in our soul healing process. We were ten amazing souls in the studio on Saturday. What a blessing!
David accompanied many of our activities on the keyboard. One of the greatest compliments I received after the event was David saying, “Jeannine, in some ways this felt like a black church.” He was referring to how the music opened up people’s hearts and souls. I always marvel at the capacity of St. Hildegard’s music to open the door to the soul and how people of all the spiritual traditions find ways to connect to her work. So much sweetness and peace happened for myself and the participants. I hope you will join us for one of the upcoming Doctor Of The Soul group events. If you are unable to attend the group events, know that I am developing online programs with the content of these soul healing workshops so everyone will have access to them going forward.
The next group event will be on Sat. Dec. 3rd, 3:30-5 pm. This will be the first of a series of seven on Healing with Mantra. I have been studying Mantra for many years, and I’m very eager to share the healing power of this tradition. This mantra practice is ancient, we will be using the Sanskrit language. Like St. Hildegard’s Music it is also based on spiritual vibration for healing. I am so grateful for Russil & Asha Paul and their Yogic Mystery School. I have been a student in the school since 2011 and their teachings have become a huge part of my life. Click hereto purchase tickets online for $29. (Tickets will be $45 at the door on the day of the event.)
Finally, I’m grateful for you! I hope to connect with each of you in person during the upcoming months and in the interim, keep enjoying these newsletters. To show my appreciation for you I would like to share a meditation audio recording David and I recently created. It is a full body relaxation with a Bach arrangement. I love this piece by Bach and have been playing it since I was twelve years old. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll email you a copy to enjoy.
Happy Halloween! In the spirit of Halloween, mystery was the theme of the October, Tap Into Transformation. For those of you who have not yet seen the promo video CLICK HEREif you want to put a smile on your face!
We encouraged our participants to come dressed in costume. I wore my witch costume shown in the video, but David wore his hippie costume! Isn’t my husband the most darling man in the world?! One of our participants, Linda Farrell, came dressed in glorious white lace. She even wore the most precious bonnet I’ve ever seen. If I had to label her costume it would have been Magical Mother Hubbard! Truly heartwarming.
After having a delightful time with the Addams Family tap dance we enjoyed a home cooked meal. Yes, yours truly pulled off orange chicken with brown rice, broccoli, and a scrumptious salad. Yum! I’m thinking of cooking my mother’s famous spaghetti sauce for next month’s Tap Into Transformation. We’ll see! I’ll let you foodies know for sure in the next Tap Into Transformation flier.
After dinner, I kid you not, we played the Mystery Game! One Wednesday morning last month, David and I sat outside Spruce Confections, our favorite little coffee shop down the road from our home, and created a list of mystery questions.
Here are a few examples:
Tell us about something mysterious that left you awestruck
Tell us about a mystery you would love to be involved in.
Tell us about a mysterious place that you would recommend for us to experience.
The following Wednesday, we sat in our studio and decided on the hiding spots for the mystery questions. We knew we wanted to put the mystery questions in envelopes and hide the envelopes in the studio. For each hiding spot, we created a clue in the spirit of Halloween to guide people to find a mystery envelope. Here are some of the clues:
Clue – What kind of sneaker sneaks around on the ground and goes tippity-tap, tippity-tap?
Hiding spot: hip hop tap shoe
Clue – What’s brown on the bottom and white on top and when you HIT IT… the beats don’t stop?
Hiding spot: Djembe drum
Clue – Where do you find a gentle stream that soothes the senses and moistens your screams?
Hiding spot: water fountain
On the night of Tap Into Transformation, the mystery questions were put into envelopes and hidden in the hiding spots. David read the clues aloud in his most spooky voice! What fun the group had searching for their mystery questions. Then with mystery question in hand, each person shared their answer with the group. What occurred was the most amazing conversation we’ve ever had at a Tap into Transformation as people shared the mysteries of their lives. For those of you who were there, thanks again for your beautiful and I dare say spectacular shares. It was an unforgettable evening.
Over the last few years I have often thought that one of the biggest mysteries in Boulder, CO, is what happens in the Viriditas Studio! In an attempt to “solve” this mystery for people in Boulder, David and I decided to list the Viriditas Studio in the NoBo 1st Friday events. Every month the NoBo Art District lists the studios that have open houses on the 1st Friday of each month. So, we’ve had lots of people visiting the past year during our Tap Into Transformation event. I would meet and greet these visitors while David taught the dance.
After doing this for a year, David and I have decided to move our Tap Into Transformation event to the 3rd Friday of the month and to focus solely on the NoBo 1st Friday open house on the first Fridays of each month. This will give both of us the opportunity to fully engage with the NoBo Art District visitors – yes, we will get them into tap shoes I promise you! In addition, I can once again be fully engaged in the Tap Into Transformation evenings and we will maintain the sacred space for our Tap Into Transformation groups. Please tell any of your friends whom you think might enjoy our work to come by the studio on the first Fridays and explore the magic of Viriditas with us. We will be there between 6pm and 9pm.
As I consider everything that has happened in the Viriditas Studio, the mystery for me is not so much what happens there. Instead I marvel and ask how is it possible that the work keeps evolving so beautifully? I initially created the studio as a space to birth the production of Feathers on the Breath of God. After performing Feathers in Boulder and in Fort Collins, my dream is to now take the performance piece to Denver. After launching Feathers,Tap Into Transformation came along and is now continuing into its fifth year! David and I have also created two performances of Tap Into Love on Valentine’s day, and yes the third performance is coming next February! And finally, our workshop, Tap Into Power For Life Now was launched. Such wondrous work.
Now, let me tell you about the new things that are happening in the Viriditas Studio. No mysteries anymore! David just started teaching tap dancing in the studio. On Tuesday nights from 6-7:15 pm he has his beginners class. On Thursdays from 6-7:15 pm he has his intermediate/advanced class. He also teaches private lessons. David teaches both classic tap dance and hoofing. His classes are primarily for fun and exercise. Did you know that dancing burns more calories in 30 minutes than any other foot raising exercise? And tap dancing raises your feet like nothing else! The cost is $20 per class and $40 per hour for private lessons. There are packages of 4, 6 and 8 lessons available for a reduced price. For more information, please call David at 408-396-5179 or email him at email@example.com.
And while David has begun teaching tap dancing, I having been getting ready to launch my new healing work which I’m calling Doctor of the Soul. The first live group event will be in the Viriditas Studio on November 5th. I have created a new website and marvel how much progress I’ve made using technology. The creation of this website happened very quickly, and I knew exactly where to go for support. Go to www.doctorofthesoul.com and click on the Live Events tab to purchase tickets for the event on Sat. Nov. 5th from 3:30-5 pm. If you are looking for some deep soul nourishment, this is the event for you!
In closing I would like to add that another one of the mysteries in my life that I have been exploring in recent years is “what does fun look like for me?” It is so important that we have fun every day of our lives, and so I’d like to tell you about two events this weekend that I highly recommend if you want to have a great time.
The first is the annual Kutandara fundraiser, Moon & Stars held at the Boulder Dinner Theater on Sat. Oct. 22nd. This year there will be live and silent auctions as well as a concert featuring Tendai Muparutsa and ZiMBiRA. David and I are going and we hope to see many of you there. Come dance the night away with us. (CLICK HEREto purchase tickets.)
Secondly, on Sunday, October 23rd from 4-6 pm, David and I will be attending the Boulder Chorale’s concert, Take a Closer Look at the Boulder 7th Day Adventist Church. The concert will feature women’s work, poetry and music. One of the featured composers is St. Hildegard of Bingen! Join me and David and soak in the glory of female creativity. (CLICK HEREto purchase tickets.)
In the mean time, may you all embrace the mysteries of your lives!
Yesterday I walked out to my garden to pick the ripe raspberries which I was going to serve for dessert. Needless to say I couldn’t resist savoring some of them while I was picking. How fragrantly sweet they were as they melted in my mouth.
I remembered the year I planted the little raspberry seedlings in the fertile and rich soil hoping it wouldn’t be long before I could enjoy fresh raspberries from my garden. Year in and year out I have weeded and watered my raspberry patch. Each October I cut back the plants trusting that in the spring they will grow back with fresh berries. I love how the ripe berries pop out against the green backdrop of the leaves each year.
What is the harvest in your life right now? What seedlings did you plants perhaps many years ago that are now bearing fruit? And most importantly, are you truly savoring the fruits of your labor and dedication? I know I often am focusing on the next project and forget to celebrate and enjoy my accomplishments.
It was in this vain that my marimba teacher Randy McIntosh gathered the members of my marimba ensemble Titandare together at the beginning of the month. He wanted us all to acknowledge the incredible work and dedication that we had all put in over the years which enabled us to play at the annual Zimbabwean Music Festival (Zimfest) in Oregon. He said that we had learned and developed so many wonderful songs. Now he said it was time to enjoy all that work. While yes, we would be learning new songs, he felt it was really important for us to further develop and really appreciate the music we brought to Zimfest. And so I am greatly enjoying our current practices as we regularly spend some of our time together playing and mostly enjoying this oh so familiar music.
My husband David was in the audience at Zimfest and filmed some of Titandare’s concert. Click on this linkand enjoy what was truly one of the musical highlights of my life to date! One of my favorite moments was when a Zimbabwean woman came up and joined us on stage at the microphone. Wow, as she was standing right in front of me and looked into my eyes, I felt the power of her soul as it connected with the music. Unforgetable! Another favorite moment was when one of our beloved teachers Simba Tawanda joined us to play the lead marimba on one of the songs he taught us last year. After four years of playing with Titandare with two new members joining us last year, I marvel at how I have grown so close and enjoyed getting to know more deeply these beautiful people. What a blessing!
Another accomplishment which I want to celebrate is that next month David and I will be completing our fourth year of Tap Into Transformation! What a fabulous time we have had as month after month over these four years, we have been guided by our joint tap dance muse to create unique and uplifting evenings for hundreds of people.
This month our theme was Ritmo. Inspired by the powerful rhythms of the Rio Olympics and Brazilian music, we found some glorious Brazilian percussion tracks and created a fabulous choreography. Here is the promo video David and I created so you can enjoy a taste of the dancing we did that night. Click here to view the video.
David and I discovered Five on Black which did the catering for the event. The tag line for Five on Black is “Take the titillating taste of BRAZIL and mix it with a scintillating slice of CARNIVAL. It’s Happiness in a Bowl.” Hmmm…really if you want to have a happy lunch some day, go by Five on Black in Boulder. I highly recommend the Feijoada. What is Feijoada you ask? It’s the national stew of Brazil made with bacon, sausage, beef, black beans, herbs and spices and slow cooked until it practically melts in your mouth. Check outFive On Black’s website to get your mouth watering.
Looking ahead to our fifth year of Tap Into Transformation, David and I will be moving the event to the third Friday of the month starting in November. We will be sending out a special reminder email at the end of October.
The last accomplishment that I want to celebrate with you is that I have started working on developing healing sessions using St. Hildegard’s music. After studying and performing St. Hildegard’s music for over twenty years, I have experienced first hand the healing that can happen with her music. The healing sessions will be held at the Viriditas Studio on Saturday afternoons. Believe me, you do not have to be a musician to benefit from these sessions. The first session will be on November 5th between 3:30 and 5:00 pm. Mark your calendars! In the mean time, I invite you to check out my blog and the first post in a series of meditative experiences using St. Hildegard’s music. (Click here to view the blog)
In closing I would like to leave you with these words from St. Hildegard.
“Through this world God encircles and strengthens humankind. Through and through, great power is ours, such that all creation, in all things, stands by us.”
May you continue to receive this great power and may you savor and celebrate the fruits you are currently harvesting in your lives.