Workshop Outline

I. Community Building, Warm-Up 


Participants are invited to participate in a set of body-awakening, mind-opening, community-building activities in preparation for intense communal creative work.

II. Active Listening Sessions

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While I play the violin, participants are prompted to listen in three different ways:

1) listening with the whole body
2) listening for feelings and colors
3) listening for stories and their elements

During each stage of listening, participants are encouraged to use a mixture of art supplies and modes of expression to make their listening experience visible to their fellow listeners and the performer. The art-making and writing destination is one very large banner of paper, affixed to the floor or the wall. After each stage of listening/art-making, participants are invited to discuss their experiences in small and large groups.

III. Culminating Performance 


After a quick, magical transformation, the banner will come to life as a cranky: the banner, rolled into a scroll, is spooled across a frame from one rotating dowel to another, thus turning the banner into a mechanical moving picture. This moving picture becomes an essential, influential part of the final musical performance, which includes a free choice time for listeners to wander among writing, art-making, and dance, and meditation, or linger on their favorite of those modes of active listening.

IV. Discussion and Reflective Writing

participants listening

Supported by frameworks of Visible Thinking, participants will spend time discussing and writing about their listening, art-making, and community-building experiences during the workshop, and brainstorming other ways to listen together and foster each others’ capacities as creative, expressive listeners.

Where & When?

Photo credits: First and last photos, Ana Paula Lanz @ Habla Teacher Institute, in Mérida, Mexico. Second and third photos, Ealain McMullin @ Newport String Project, in Newport, RI.