Hello & Welcome ~ Thank you for visiting. I’d like to introduce myself by telling my “drumming story”. It begins (in this life) YES, when my heart first began beating, and I imagine — I first moved to that powerful, natural rhythm.
I suspect I’ve never forgotten that feeling; I have never stopped dancing to Heart Song!
On a more conventional note: After a ten year career teaching at a Montessori Elementary School (ages 9-12) and six years as a senior manager at a farm winery in New York State – I’ve been enjoying leading community building and wellness-based drum circles. I am committed to bringing the positive, transformative power of the “Song of the Heart” to others.
Group Empowerment Drumming has been my “way in”. It’s been a high adventure!
As a consultant and professional Drum Circle Facilitator since 2006, I’ve facilitated numerous, highly interactive, wellness and community building group drumming events, working with many populations with a variety of needs. These include colleges and elementary schools (students and staff), businesses, Elder communities (Independent & Assisted Living, Memory Care & Nursing Care), youth at risk, adults in recovery, Veterans Hospitals, and communities which assist and educate children and adults with special needs.
Having begun formal study of the West African Djembe in 1993 with Master Drummer Maurice Haltom of Ithaca, NY, and having played for an African Dance Class which he taught, in 2004 I felt drawn to take my energy into the field of wellness, and I began drum circle facilitator training.
I am a certified HealthRHYTHMS facilitator. What is HealthRHYTHMS? Click and scroll down for video presentation: http://remo.com/experience/post/healthrhythms/
I have also been a student of Arthur Hull of Village Music Circle (Santa Cruz, CA) http://villagemusiccircles.com/
Over the years I have evolved my own style and methodology, based on these teachings.
As a fairly recent transplant from Central NY to Northern Arizona, my team and I are now offering Drumming programs to individuals and communities in the Cottonwood/Sedona areas, Flagstaff, Prescott, and Phoenix with some travel wider afield.
Some of our Arizona clients (past and present) include: Rainbow Acres Ranch, The Sanctuary at Sedona, Sedona Winds, Cottonwood Village, Austin House, Haven Care, Cupertino Power Learning Academy, Mountain Valley Prep, Yavapai Community College and more.
Group Empowerment Drumming is fun, highly interactive, and powerfully connecting. Our program can be custom tailored to convey any message. It’s ideal for festive celebrations (ages 5-105), leadership training, key notes, soul awakenings, community building and wellness initiatives.
What might one “spontaneous breakout” kind of Empowerment Drumming session look like? Here,co-creating fun and smiles — drumming with families at a local park. https://vimeo.com/162451255
And with my friends at Walden Place, Cortland NY. Our first incarnation
as Sound Circles ~ “Rhythm Workshop”
In 2018, our newest programming includes “HOLISTIC RHYTHMS WORKSHOP “.
This group drumming experience (1.5 to 3 hours) includes the ABCs of Frame and Single-Stick Drumming (Native American), is highly interactive and energizing, and is centered on core, aboriginal (non-western) rhythmic forms, which in my experience arise out of simple, natural, two-step walking and the waltz-like (in 3 or 6 pulse) rhythm of the heart. Engaging with a 27” gathering drum is the centering group experience. Afterwards, participants each have a frame drum to play.
Mindfulness training is integrated; participants are introduced to the healthful, transformative practice of Mindful Breathing and Mindful Walking, integrated together — “Breathwalking”. This practice is shaped by the core rhythmic forms noted above. Participants come away with practical tools for generating peacefulness, personal power, and resiliency. So needed in today’s world of soul challenges!
We offer: DRUM FOR WATER (1.5 hours) We begin with an inner circle of women leading; men take on a supportive role at the outer circle.
With frame/hoop drums–this program integrates the core aboriginal rhythms described above with focused attention on sending appreciation to water. The group may composes simple verbal messages which are chanted/sung; free vocalizing is encouraged. Other artful additions may be included such a free movement.
DRUM FOR WATER is about tapping into and celebrating the creativity and natural power of women, with men in a supportive role.
We also offer a One-on-one, private drumming or music and movement based Coaching program for individuals seeking personal growth, healing, greater well-being, and success.
This is geared to any age, children and adults, and may include beginning music instruction (African drum, Native American Flute, acoustic guitar), Meditative Drumming, Shamanic Drumming and creative visualization, Mindfulness Training, and Breathwalking.
In our all our programming–establishing a circle environment of safety, equality, non-judgement and fun is hugely important for achieving a successful outcome, with smiles, heart connections and positivity blossoming. There is no such thing as a “rhythm klutz”. We all are naturally rhythmical. Do not believe anyone who says you are not rhythmical. Most especially, do not believe yourself. Truth is–you are wholly and perfectly rhythmical, simply by being alive and human.
I believe that there is enduring truth in the statements: ALL is connected, by Natural Law. One is ALL. And ALL are equal.
When we bring our awareness to consider these truths, and we experience that ALL is in intimate, interdependent relationship, we live healthier, more compassionate, purposeful lives.
Group drumming can offer us a profoundly transformative, freeing experience in this regard. Yet, not all drum circles set out with this aim. Our programming is set apart in that it is solely about freedom of expression; it’s not about creating “proper rhythmical song”.
Group Empowerment Drumming is not about drumming, per say. It is about building a healthy relationship with one’s body and mind. It’s about taking an active role in self-care, being responsible for one’s own well-being.
Truly, it’s about honoring and building bridges, growing communication, building harmonious relationships, and choosing Love. Being loving and compassionate to self and being in service to others.
In all Heart Song Group Drumming programming we provide all rhythm instruments and can accommodate up to 50 persons, with potential for many more.
Our rhythmical tool kit includes West African Djembe drums, frame drums, a 27″ gathering drum, and is rounded out with an eclectic, artful array of handcrafted shakers, woods and metal “voices” from around the world. Adding in “Body beats” and vocalizations widens the possibilities. It’s quite possible to have a powerful experience using only rhythms we can make with our voices and bodies, with or without percussion instruments.
Are you ready to leap into something new, fun and positively transformative? Set out on a powerful, rhythmical, heartful adventure?
How may we serve you? How may we serve your group? Would you, your group or community like to collaborate with our program or with me personally?