Hey, friends and kindred spirits! We are getting together to do the things we love to do: making music and movement and art outdoors, safely, on beautiful summer evenings and fall afternoons in Boulder. Would you like to join us?!? Let's co-create the ways we can gather safely and beautifully through this pandemic. See the following new offerings...
-- Merlyn Holmes, James Hoskins, Noah Rouse Wilson IV, Brian Mullins, Mark Miller, David Wheeler, Bill McCrossen, Scott Bears, Michael DeLalla, and other members and friends of Creativity Alive's "Mmmwhah! Ensemble"
Announcing a new series in Boulder's Holiday Park
Music, Dance, Art in the Park
with Creativity Alive
Saturdays: Music, Dance & Art-making in Holiday Park Listen, dance, relax, watch the clouds, see friends (?!?), make art, photography/video always welcome, breathe into generous, safe, physical distances to keep each other and our beloved community exquisitely safe. Let's nourish ourselves deeply while the weather is good.
Sept. 19 (rain date Sept 20) | Brazilian dance music with Francisco Marques multi-instrumentalist and vocalist and Raoul Rossiter on percussion, both from Ginga, | Exact time TBD (approx 5 -6:30 pm)
Sept. 26 (rain date Sept 27) | Global Flutes, Lutes & Motion | David Kansuke Wheeler (shakuhachi), Michael DeLalla (guitars, voice), and Merlyn Holmes (dance, ngoni) | 5-6:30 pm | Drums/percussion to use with one piece welcome, in addition to everything below.
Tuesday, Sept 29 (rain date Oct 1) - James Marienthal CD-release concert for "Speak to the Sky. James Marienthal on Native American flutes. Tom Wasinger on guitars and percussion, Arwen Ek on vocals, and a special dance performance by Merlyn Holmes. Donations of $15 or more includes a CD. | 5:30-6:30 pm
October Sneak Peak (details to come soon, times will be in the afternoons)
Oct. 3 (rain date Oct 4) | Jesse Manno, multi-instrumentalist and dance accompanist extraordinaire
Oct. 10 (rain date Oct 11) | Noah Rouse Wilson IV and Scott Bears on delruba, ngoni, guitar, oud, and vocals and Merlyn in the dance
Oct. 17 (rain date Oct 18) | Brian Mullins & James Hoskins on erhu, cello, cajon, gadulka, drums, bird calls, and a fine miscellany of other, wondrous instruments
Oct 24 (rain date Oct 25) Something wondrous TBA
Halloween! Oct 31 Oh this is a must do. What do you think? Shall we have a masked ball? A music and dance parade? Ideas & volunteers so welcome. Contact Merlyn >>
For all events:
Location: Holiday Park: 14th St. x Yaupon Ave. in Boulder, CO
Suggested donations: $15-$30 Your generosity is soo appreciated. As you can well imagine, we've taken quite a hit this year and had to cancel all our classes, workshops, performances, events and festivals through the end of the year. While these few gatherings in the parks while the weather is good are designed to provide nourishment to all of us to help us sustain through the "pandemic winter," they also need to provide some kind of living for us / help put food on the table. To keep Creativity Alive afloat and able to continue offering things like these, we have our Mmmwhahsome musicians to pay, and the founder, dancer and creative spirit behind all these offerings, Merlyn (and her son) to support. Consider what value these are to you during these times, what a treat they are, and please give accordingly - at each event OR at any time:
paypal.me/merlynholmes >> - to avoid fees being deducted, please avoid ticking "services" box
checks to Creativity Alive
But don't let money stop you. Donate what you can
Volunteer: Creativity Alive lives on the strengths of its community; please volunteer and join us to keep creativity alive.. Contact Merlyn >>
Please pee prior: No bathrooms available
Bring: blankets/chairs/yoga mats, water, umbrellas, long scarves, donations, art supplies - and your creative self! Feel free to bring a picnic or pick up food from Proto's Pizza, a local fav.
To keep every member of our beloved community safe
Prior to each event, please do a full wellness check and confirm you can adhere to our Safety Agreement.
We'll provide a thermometer and hand sanitizer on site for your use.
Masks required for any distances under 6 feet with those outside your intimate circle. Luxuriate in spaciousness.
Six feet between us
Miles above and below...
We dance in new forms.
What Others are Saying:
"I am still Dancing in Grateful Happiness!!!" -- Renee Nichols
"You are inspiring! You're offering such great gifts to heal and uplift the world!" -- Tracy Goldenberg
"I think we all appreciate you taking action and initiating the first step in a journey back to normal." -- Sophie Cardineau
Sept. 12 | 4:30 pm | Improvisational Music & Movement with Bill McCrossen, Brian Mullins, and Merlyn Holmes Come on back to home base with us and dive into improvisational music and movement as we loved to do in the Mmmwhah! Ensemble in safe ways for these times. Bill and Brian will create their musical alchemy on their fine miscellany of instruments. Join Merlyn in the movement, listen, witness, relax, make art, experience something new and enjoy each other's company...
Welcome home, kindred spirits! Newcomers so welcome as well.
Sept. 5 | Dance with Creativity Alive | 6:15 - 7:45pm Merlyn Holmes, founder of Creativity Alive, will be leading this one. She is so looking forward to being able to deepen into the dance, into the community, into our hearts in new, creative, and safe ways. Merlyn is putting together a play list with some fantastic world music. And she'll be bringing a number of tools and techniques that can help us experience strong social connection at exquisitely safe physical distances. We can then use these throughout the rest of the series.
Bring: yoga mats/blankets, water, umbrellas for rain, shade, and as a fun dance partner and social distancing tool, long scarves, donations...
Saturday, Aug 15 | Noah Rouse Wilson IV & Scott Bears on dilruba, hammered dulcimer, ngoni, oud and guitar | Music & Movement Meditation
Saturday, Aug 22 | David Kansuke Wheeler, master shakuhachi player | Midsummer Night Stories of a Shakuhachi Dream: melodies old and new, classical and original, performed on the shakuhachi, Japan's iconic bamboo flute. Relax and revive; meditate and move.
Saturday, Aug 29 | James Hoskins & Brian Mullins on erhu, cello, cajon, gadulka, drums, bird calls, and a fine miscellany of other, wondrous instruments | Dance under the Evening Sky
Time: ~6:45 pm - Dark | earlier in September
Bring: blankets/chairs, umbrellas for rain or shade or to dance with, scarves, water, art supplies if you like, donations...
More events to Inspire Creativity and Build Community being planned. Details coming soon!
For each gathering:
Be prepared to do a full wellness check in and sign our Safety Agreement on the day at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1HTDn83b-UiBE7AL3_EgtkSUCyOi-DFiF/view?usp=sharing We'll provide a thermometer and hand sanitizer.
Masks required for any distances under 6 feet with those outside your intimate circle. Enjoy the luxurious space...
Note: Bathrooms may not be readily available. Please pee prior. (PPP? *_*)
Stay in the loop. Sign on for direct invites to future events.
Aren't you just dying to dance? Together again? Strictly limited to groups of 10 with the utmost care to safety and enjoyment. Time to celebrate and let loose and share the joy of dancing in each other's company, outdoors at safe physical distances. Combination of recorded and live music. Merlyn creates a playlist for each group and each environment, and we often have guest live musicians. Carefully crafted safety agreements and structures to meet the needs of each group.
July 2, 10, 17... | 7-8:30 pm | More to come soon.
Outdoor locations emailed to participants
For those of you who are brave-hearted and willing to experience it all, and heal it all, to tap into your innermost sources of strength and joy, I offer this new form of dance I call "Soul Dances with Creativity Alive." We will meet outdoors in very small groups, perhaps 6 or 8.
My vision of Soul Dances is informed by practices such as Authentic Movement and Contemplative Movement. We'll work strongly with solo forms initially with "What is alive in us in each moment." We will call on our innate wisdom to articulate, express, heal, and deeply nourish us. Unlike forms like Authentic Movement, we'll use choice words, music, and the arts to support the movement that needs to happen.
We'll also, importantly, dive into a system of witnessing that I've been developing over the past 4 years that can both support each of us within our circle as well as give us essential skills to take out into the world, where being able to witness and hold space for each other is so important.
To be honest, I also see this piece as being critical to supporting movements like #BlackLivesMatter.
July 7, 10:30 am - noon. Future dates definitely TBD
Outdoor locations emailed to participants
2020 Vision: New Eyes, New World has been underway since Fall 2019 with > 250 K-12 students and adults, was derailed by the pandemic, and then resuscitated and moved online. Spring and summer events were sadly cancelled, and yet... Cool new eyes have been emerging...
Check out our web gallery with some of the first art.
Follow our new Instagram to witness and participate as this movement unfolds
Important Coronavirus Adjustments:
We like to think that instead of just having had to cancel all our events, we are postponing them and stepping back to figure out how to best replace events. Please know this will take time due to the nature of what we as a community arts organization focused on embodied, relational practices.
We realize more than ever, this is a time for us all to come together and be creative in finding ways to maintain a safe social distance, while developing new ways of Inspiring Creativity and Building Community.
"Creativity is intelligence having fun." Let's figure this out!
This is a quickly changing landscape. If you're not already on our e-list, please subscribe here so we can keep you informed.
Please subscribe to our new YouTube Channel for a whole new set of free offerings!
New: Monday, March 16: "Yes! We're in this together. Let's be creative!" 6-foot social distance gatherings, 5-6:30 pm Holiday Park. When social distancing allows we hope to offer more of these. See details >>
Replaced with free YouTube offering: March 29 Creativity Coming Alive - Mmmwhah! Ensemble performances online, part of Boulder Arts Week.
When the time is right, we so hope to resume ArtDances with Creativity Alive. Come move in new ways with new, live music. Create art in community. Deepen into the art of community. Feb 18, then 4th Tuesdays beginning (hopefully) April 28 with guests Beth Quist, James Hoskins, and Jesse Mano and Boulder High 2020 Vision: New Eyes art. Stay tuned for details. We have a great lineup forming!
Circle Singing, 3rd Mondays, REPLACING Mar 16 with 6-foot social distancing gathering. (see above), Postponing April 20, May 18...
Tune in for the launch of other wonderful, fun, life-enhancing offerings.
"Yes! We are in this together. Let's be creative!"
6-foot safe social distance creative gatherings to figure out how to best Inspire Creativity and Build Community and deeply nourish ourselves during this coronavirus pandemic.
New: March 16
Donation-based, but tickets required:
Limit of 10 participants
Holiday Park in North Boulder.
Like many of you, we are deeply disturbed by the call for isolation, the rapid move of so much of our social interaction to the internet, and the string of event cancellations that would have brought us together during this health crisis when in many ways what we need more than ever is an even deeper connection. As social beings we need to gather & connect & play despite this virus if at all possible. Let's explore what can be done safely at a distance of 6 feet!
At Creativity Alive, we are committed to finding alternatives to the proposed isolation around coronavirus. Instead of canceling our luscious, intimate, indoors Singing Circle and Frame drumming playshops, we hope to postpone or replace them with these outdoor 6-foot social distancing exploration and creative brainstorming sessions. 'Seems to us clearly that these times require us to explore new forms. Please join us!
Expect these to be fun, joyful, thought-provoking, deeply nourishing and habit changing.
Inspired in part by the quote: "Creativity is intelligence at play." we definitely need to bring our intelligence to the table for this one. We know deep in our hearts we still need to gather and connect and play and create and sing and dance and play music together... Just need to figure out how we can do that in a safe way, right? For ourselves and others who are more vulnerable. Collectively, i think we may be able to figure this out.
Please sign up for a donation-based "ticket" through Eventbrite to make it easy to track, to be able to give everyone any necessary updates quickly, and to have a waitlist option in case they fill, which they may well. We are committing to offering as many of these as our community desires. There are many who would choose to be proactive about this whole thing rather just accept the default isolation. Donations are greatly appreciated and will help Creativity Alive stay afloat through this crisis, so we can continue bringing this work to our community.
Feel free to suggest activities that we could try. We really are in this together.
Don't you just love the expression on the relaxed Buddha's face. It calms me just looking at it. This is an "Antidote to coronavirus" altar I've taking to Creativity Alive events this month.
It suggests that range of emotion and action needed from that old saying: "Trust in Allah. And tie up your camel."
Art & photo by Merlyn
Creativity Coming Alive
January 26 | Ceraso Gallery & Studio, 1294 Doric Dr., Lafayette
March 29 | Replaced with free YouTubes.
May 24 Not sure if we'll be able to hold in person yet | Healing Spirits Living Arts Studio, 3825 Iris # 310, Boulder
Come mix it up with members of the Mmmwhah! Ensembles
Witness the Ensembles play with improvisational seeds of compositions in the first half.
Have a chance to play with the performers and fun improvisational structures in the second half. Or just sit back and enjoy.
Join us is as we work/play/stretch our creative edges in a loving, fun, inspiring community of like-minded creative spirits.
March 29th: We will play with a theme of maintaining a 6-foot social distance, for performers and audience members alike.
RSVPs requested even if paying at the door due to limited space. (PayPal payment can serve as RSVP)
Art created by Lisa Michot at a Mmmwhah! Gathering
Frame Drumming Series
Boulder Circus Center, 6:30-8 pm
$190 Early-bird rate by March 15 | $235 Full Rate
Limit of 12. Register soon via PayPal. (Select drop box for friend or family.)
$50 for 1st session drop-in if space is available. May be applied to whole series. Email Merlyn with any questions.
Learn techniques of playing the frame drum and basic musicianship in this 5-session series. Most of the rhythms Kristina teaches are from the middle east and have been played, sung and danced for thousands of years.
Most cultures around the world have a version of the frame drum and the playing techniques vary. She will show you different ways to play, and you can pick what feels most natural and works for you. Our bodies are unique, and finding which particular methods work best for you can be the secret to your success.
By the end of this 5-part series you will be able to hold a variety of rhythms enabling you to sing and play with other musicians. If you want to take the next step musically, this is it. Rhythm is basic to all music, and the rhythms you learn here can be used to play any instrument.
It is recommended that you buy your own drum but Kristina have drums that you can borrow during the evening classes. (Note, we are also looking for good frame drums people are ready to pass on. Email Merlyn if you have one to sell.)
We will also play with singing across the drum, a singing technique that resonates and sounds like you are singing in a cathedral. This is very magical and has a deeply calming effect on our beings.
This class is open to everyone regardless of musical experience.
About Kristina Sophia
Kristina Sophia has played frame drum and sung in the Cairo Stadium to an audience of 60,000 Egyptians, and also performed in Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon, Venezuela, Mexico, Panama, on the streets of Baghdad and in over half of the states in the U.S.
She has led workshops in voice and drumming for over 20 years. She is a graduate of Naropa University and is co-founder of Musical Ambassadors of Peace, a non-profit dedicated to helping create world peace through music.
Her passion is to help bring healing, peace and awakening to humanity through the power of music.
Note: Full ArtDance Series hopefully to begin on 4th Tuesdays beginning April 28. Stay tuned for details. We have a great lineup forming.
Introducing the first
ArtDances with Creativity Alive
in conjunction with
February 18, 7:30-9:30 pm
Nevei Kodesh, 1925 Glenwood, Boulder
Only $12 bucks! Additional tips for musician/art/dance team welcome.
Photo of Merlyn by David Silver at "Mmmwhah! to Flagstaff.".
Stretch out and move in new ways to new music. Come dance with live, improvisational world music where the musicians are responding to you and "dancing" with you as they play with the beat, not just drive your dance with the beat.
Enjoy working on collaborative art projects that naturally integrate with the dance and the theme for each occasion.
Music will be led by Mmmwhahsome musician Bill McCrossen,
with Noah Rouse Wilson IV, Jahanara Mangus, Mark Miller, Brian Mullins, and James Marienthal on world instruments such as the ngoni, kora, guembri, dilruba, erhu, flutes, woodwinds, mbira, cajon, and more.
Feb 18th Theme: "Making love with music, movement, and art-making." After what for some is a Hallmark-dominated Valentine's Day, we plan to turn into the heart of what moves us at Creativity Alive. Our hearts are deeply enriched by the intertwining of music, movement, and art-making in community. We invite you to join us!
For this ArtDance in particular, we are delighted to debut several custom-made ngoni instruments created by local artist Jahanara Mangus, whom we met through a Mmmwhah! neighborhood event in 2018.
Our community art-making project "Love Notes" will be led by artists Khiri Lee and Jahanara. Design, create, dance with Love Notes to what and who all truly make your heart sing: whether that's music, dance, art, nature, spirit, friends, lovers... Feel free to bring art or poetry that evokes that unbridled feeling of love in you to share on our art altar.
Event facilitated by dancer and founder of Creativity Alive, Merlyn Holmes. Email Merlyn with any questions >>
Conscious dance, contact improv, contemplative movement, and deep listening / witnessing / sketching / writing / reflection / and just being nourished are all welcome.
Save your place and skip the lines: $12 via PayPal now >>
Limit of 50 attendees. Or pay at the door with cash or check to Creativity Alive.
We hope to establish an ongoing monthly Art Dance series on 4th Tuesdays. Sign on to receive direct invites to future Art Dances >>
Multi-instrumentalist Bill McCrossen will lead the music..
Several of the ngonis have been made by local artist Jahanara Mangus, whom we met through a Mmmwhah! neighborhood event
Musicians for the Feb 18th Art Dance in rehearsal
Also: Check out the regular
with DJ James Marienthal
Jan 28 & March 3, 7:30-9:30 pm at Nevei Kodesh.
Cost: $12, pay at the door, cash or check only.
Art created by Lisa Michot at a Mmmwhah! Gathering
Second Sunday Mmmwhah! Creativity Gatherings | Oct 13 See details below. | Note: Nov 10 will be a special event...
Monthly Circle Singing, Oct 21, Nov 18, Dec 16... 6-8 pm | See details >>
Music, Movement, and Writing with the Light, photography stroll, Oct 22 | See below
Fall Poetry Jam | Oct 27 | See below
Stay tuned for the launch of other wonderful, fun, life-enhancing offerings.
"Mmmwhah! Fall Poetry Jam"
Next up: Oct 27, 1-3 pm
Boulder Locations TBD. RSVPs required.
$20 at the door | $15 in advance via PayPal
(Please indicate on PayPal which events you'd like to attend.)
Calling all poets, lovers of poetry, musicians, artists, and movers!
Let's share poetry, create poetry, encourage our poetry to breathe
into the music, art, and movement realms, and feast upon the
poetic sensibility together.
Expect your creativity to be deeply nourished.
Bring a short poem or two, excerpts from longer poems, musical instruments, voices, and your beautiful, soulful, curious selves. Potluck finger foods / beverages welcome, but not required.
Art created by Lisa Michot at a Mmmwhah! Gathering
Photo of our first Poetry Jam by David Silver.
Next up: Oct 13, 2-4 pm
Location: Ceraso Studio & Gallery, 294 Doric Dr., Lafayatte Pls RSVP
Gather with our fellow artists, musicians, dancers, writers, photographers, and other creative spirits to inspire and nourish the muses in all of us. Join in the free movement, art-making, and live, improvisational music, or just listen / observe / take it all in as nourishment under a gently guided structure. Musically, we will ask one musician to lead each piece, rather than everyone playing all the time in a big jam: Spaciousness over density.
Our Mmmwhah! Gatherings are improvisation as a form of play that can actually alter our sense of well being and self image by learning how to be uninhibited around spontaneity. This gathering is all about play and letting go... everyone enters with a willingness to be silly and from there enter into the profound. You don't need any experience to benefit from this afternoon event. We're here to play. There's no wrong way to do that...
- $20 at the door / $15 in advance via PayPal
- Please register asap. Limit of 20.
- Doors close 15 min after our start time, so we can set our collective intention.
Photo by Adam Griff
Mmmwhah!'s core practice is one of deep listening, being fully present in the moment, within an ensemble context. It is a relational practice. Our home ground is as Active Listener / Witness / Well-wisher, who is attuned to "What will serve?"
"What will serve the music? the movement? the art-making? Ultimately, what will serve the larger composition? and the whole room?"
Photo by Chris Brown
Music, Movement, and Writing with the Light
a photography stroll through the Newlands Neighborhood
Oct 22, 4-5:30 pm
RSVPs required for starting location
and any changes due to weather
Join a trio of Mmmwhah! Ensemble members for the only Fall 2019 photography stroll with live music, movement, our cameras, and guidance from a contemplative perspective. Bring your cameras, even just your cell phones, as well as your beautiful selves.
Facilitated by Mmmwhah! Ensemble members Merlyn Holmes, Bill McCrossen, and David Silver, three-time winner of Boulder County's Open Space photo contest.
- Free to residents of the Newlands Neighborhood
- Others welcome | $15 in advance via PayPal
Photos by Merlyn Holmes
Every Wednesday: Art & Activism | 9:30am @ Silver Sage Cohousing, 1650 Yellow Pine, Boulder
Art and Activism go together like Coffee and Bagels. Join us each and every week to tend the state of our nation and write postcards and make phone calls. It's way more fun doing this together! Coffee and bagels, postcards and stamps provided. Facilitated by Sandra Bierman.