Tag: Los Angeles

  • Shantigar, located on a spectacularly beautiful old farm on a mountainside in Western Massachusetts

    Shantigar, a performing-arts retreat and center, to hold workshops in rural western Massachusetts setting

    NEW YORK; LOS ANGELES; and ROWE, MASS: “Acting.” “Being.” “Meditation.” “Awakening vision.” “Radiant health.” “Retreat.” These words and ideas leap out when one speaks of Shantigar, the educational foundation and performing-arts retreat founded by the playwright Jean Claude van Itallie in an old Davenport farm on a mountainside in Western Massachusetts near Vermont. One of Shantigar‘s guiding principles is that the performing arts can be a fount for meditation, healing and cross-pollination. According to its official website, Shantigar seeks to be a “peaceful home for writers, directors, actors, visual artists, musicians, and dancers to develop and collaborate on pieces. Shantigar offers a splendid rural setting within which to create.” So beautiful is the setting that visiting groups have not been limited to young theater or dance companies creating and rehearsing a new piece. The Ariel Group, which teaches communication skills to corporate groups, as well as Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leaders Chogyam Trungpa and Tulku Thondup have held retreats at Shantigar. Spring and summer are unusually busy this year for Shantigar and Jean-Claude van Itallie. To wit: In New York City, Sunday April 1, April Fool’s Day, at Rubin Museum at 2:30 pm, there is a showing of the film Crazy Wisdom about van Itallie’s teacher Trungpa, Rinpoche.  Afterward he will talk with audience about Rinpoche. From April 12-15, van Itallie conducts a transformative retreat, entitled “Speaking From Your Heart,” at Ratna Ling Retreat Center, 35755 Hauser Bridge Rd. Cazadero, CA. 95421.Here is a description of the retreat: “Laying the groundwork through different kinds of movement and meditation, gently guided by Jean-Claude, you’ll center yourself according to his unique disciplines. Taking your time and staying in movement, you’ll address the circle of your encouraging fellow workshop participants. Slowly performing the powerful practice of speaking from your heart, your breath will be liberated from anxiety. You’ll easily enter remembered or imagined places, …