Field Testing & Sound Recording
September 2020. Along with mentor, Dr. Rebecca Caines from the University of Regina and sound recording wizard, John Campbell, we tested gong sound at the site of my research dissemination in spring/summer 2021 – Joe Fafard’s Le Jardin de L’espirit (Mind’s Garden) (1997). It was a windy day, but the H4N Zoom Recorders did pretty well.
Musical Collaboration & Concert: Guelph, ON, Canada with Jim Harley & Reza Yazdanpanah
November 2019. The sounds merging from a trio, playing earthy and etheric instruments. Reza on Iranian tar, setar, and daf, Jim on computer composition, bells, bowls, and whistles, and me on gongs. Sublime time with these 2 artists. As collaborators, we are the Earth and Ether Trio! On December 1, 2019 at Silence in Guelph, we played together for the public and afterward, I held a gong info session.
Punjab, India with Gong Master Don Conreaux
October 2019. In collaboration with Don Conreaux and with help of Lynne Murfin, we hosted a group of international gong students in Punjab India. Don Conreaux is one of the master-teachers in my current research toward a sonic and performative ethnography. Here we are playfullly playing harmonicas. Feeling like kids; lots of laughs. The group had lots of opportunity to learn from Don, play indoors and outdoors under lovely blue skies.
Lynne Murfin, MD, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
In April-May 2019, I was invited to Dr. Lynne Murfin’s clinic and sanctuary space to set up gongs and teach some gong classes and play with her in the new space. Lynne has a functional medicine practice in Calgary and incorporates multimodalities of care for her patients.
Concert for Peace
On Feb 9, 2019. At College Street United Church in Toronto, Canada, 140 people gathered to take in the vibration of gongs and the music of the tabla & hang, the oboe, and Don Conreaux’s shruti songs (songs and poems of revelation). The collaboration was an improvised Concert for Peace & Humanity with talented local musicians including Gurpreet Chana, Derrick Tu, Barb McIntosh, Laurie Giller, as well as performance artist, lo bil. We met together for 2 hours before the start of the Concert to rehearse for Peace and allow the sounds to unfold in ‘deep listening’ (Oliveros, 2015) style of collaboration.
Gonging in Shanghai
Sept 2018. While I was in Shanghai, China researching Don Conreaux’s 10-Day Gong Training, I was invited to play the drum for zen dancers in our training group. It was my first time playing the drum and the host of the event graciously offered her drum. The 10 days were improvised sessions to explore the sounds of gong with other instruments, like the drum, as well as performance. The students in Shanghai were inspirational.
Hosted Gong Master Don’s Conreaux’s First Canadian Training
Aug 31-Sept 2, 2018. In collaboration with Anni Keshishian, we organized and hosted Don’s first Gong Training in Canada in Toronto – exciting! New and seasoned gong students came from Vancouver, California, Illinois, New York, and the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) to learn the philosophy and practice of gong – The Art of Gong.
Playing with other Gongers: On the Beach & World Record in London, UK
Aug 2018 at the Beach. I met a gong friend Jerry at his haunt near Boston, MA, USA – a seaside town called Gloucester (pronounced ‘glastah’). We took gong to the beach in order to test the sounds in the water and in concert with the wind and waves.
Gonging with 194 International Gongers. At the end of August, I went to London for a massive event. 194 Gongers from around the world gathered for the Guinness World Record – the most gongs playing a synchronized composition. It was an immense experience to be with so many gongs and players in one room. I was the only Canadian in the room, and made friends with folks from South American countries, China, and the US. And, met ‘old’ gonging friends from Croatia – a small gonging world.
Yatra to Northern India
Apr 2018. As part of my PhD dissertation research, I travelled to India. The first 10 days, I joined a group of Canadians led by Joy – Jaipreet Chandna. We began our yatra (spititual journey) in Amritsar and visited the The Golden Temple daily while we were there.
We continued our journey and visited Ananpur Sahib and then went to Dharmasala, the home of the Dalai Lama. A beautiful research surprise: The Dalai Lama moved his Mind & Life: Reimagining Human Flourishing conference to the Temple instead of holding it at his home for his invited guests of scholars and educators. Call it luck, coincidence, or synchronicity. Our group was able to attend the conference.
After our yatra, the Canadian group dispersed and I stayed in India to continue conducting my dissertation research with yogis, querying yoga as a social, life practice off of the mat, outside of the studio. In India, yoga is life. The streets are one giant yoga mat to work one’s practice and live daily life. Intense, wild, unpredictable, ugly, beautiful – all of it.
Don Conreaux at Gong Yoga of Holistic Resonance Training
Jan 2018, NYC. The Gong Yoga Training in New York and learning from Gong Master Don Conreaux was a turning point for me and my conceptualization and practice with gong. I learned about the shruti box and listened to Don use his voice as a gong to sing his shruti songs. More research began into gong masters and their culture as ‘extra-curricular’ to my dissertation project. Post-doc inspiration!
Dissertation Fieldwork in Chile
Sept 2017-Dec 2017. After spending the academic year 2016-2017 writing my proposal for my dissertation project, I was ready to fly to Santiago. I spent 6 weeks with yogis in Santiago studios, rehab centres, and a domestic shelter for women. Also, as part of my ethnographic research, I attended a 10-day special yogic program designed for moving beyond addictions – yoga for recovery. Here we are along the road to the first day of the 10-day course.