( Photo Daniel Quat for Dancing Earth, at  Desert Botanical Gardens of Santa Fe)

In the Bay Area :

Fall begins with Jacoh Cortes starts up a new semester of Cuicacalli Escuela de Danza at the Brava Theater in San Francisco. Jacoh’s Veracruz roots were highlighted by the Cuicacalli Compania hosted guest artist Jairo Garcia of Jalisco for the San Francisco Son Jarocho 2015 concert at Brava in late August , http://youtu.be/-Rn2cgCJQs0

Meanwhile DANCING EARTH’s Bay Area core team are making exciting plans for the October SEEDS AND SOUL  Festival ! ( see below, under upcoming Events ! ), with awesome collaborations and support from diverse circle of individuals and community organizations including local CA First Nations representatives, AudioPharmacy, Bay Localize, Cultural Conservancy , Forrealism Art Collective, Rooted in Community, and many more !

In the Southwest :

Fall begins with Rulan co-teaching during the month of  September for a new course :  DEVISED PERFORMANCE : Indigenous Innovations course for the new Performing Arts department  at IAIA, along with Dept chair Daniel Banks, and musician Ehren Natay in Santa Fe NM

Natalie Benally says ” This Fall, I will be helping Fort Wingate High School, a Bureau of Indian Education boarding school located near Gallup, New Mexico expand their newly formed performing arts program by collaborating with Dancing Earth and others to bring the power of theatre, dance and music to this remote area. Wingate High School is a primarily Native American populated school, who is striving to provide more artistic avenues for their youth to explore. With the help of Dancing Earth artists, we will be providing dance workshops to students and hope to build a foundation to mentor these young students both artistically and individually.”

Sept 26 Dancing Earth’s southwest members attend Tewa Women United GATHERING FOR MOTHER EARTH http://tewawomenunited.org

Sept 30-Oct 1, Rulan is honored to be selected by Native Wellness Institute to co-lead an event for Self Care Training , in Albuquerque http://www.nativewellness.com/events.html

DANCING EARTH © Paulo T. Photography www.PauloT.com

© Paulo T. Photography
















UPCOMING EVENTS : an exciting October of Bay Area events to celebrate, advocate and expand offerings of Indigenous Peoples Day on Oct 12.

These include :

Oct 7-9 Rulan leads guest classes at UC Berkeley’s Dance department

Oct 10 Rulan brings students to UC Berkeley Powwow and birthday celebration of poet activist Rafael Gonzalez, while SEEDS AND SOUL Festival leaders join Cultural Conservancy at Indian Valley Farm

Oct 11 Dancing Earth joins Big Time with CA First Nations

Oct 12 Dancing Earth joins Sunrise ceremony at Alcatraz and Indigenous peoples events at UC Berkeley

Oct 16-18 Dancing Earth at Indigenous Knowledge Forum of BIONEERS, and in performance along with AudioPharmacy at the outdoor stage

Oct 16-23 Dancing Earth leads SSEDS AND SOUL community workshops , details forthcoming ..


Dancing Earth is teaming up with Audiopharmacy to produce a festival on OCT 24 at a Secret West Oakland Location!

SEEDS & SOUL is a one-day festival harnessing the power of the ARTS and INDIGENOUS CULTURAL EXCHANGES to BRIDGE Bay Area Indigenous communities & allies.

Celebration! Dialogue! Learning!

Led by Indigenous Wombyn, Two-Spirits, and male allies, SEEDS & SOUL will celebrate the diversity of indigenous identities, provide a platform for critical dialogue, build unity and alliance among communities, and strengthen community resilience in these times of rapid social and environmental change.

Special thanks to the incredible heartfelt leadership of Javier Stell- Fresquez, Joana “Love” Cruz, and their amazing circle !!!


Oct 26-30 the month ends with Rulan co-facilitating with Professor Eric Kupers :  Indigenous Dance week at Cal State East Bay, with workshops and potlucks Mon -Thurs at 6 – 930 pm , culminating in an informal performance at 3 pm on Friday . featuring arts and cultural representatives of Ohlone, Aztec, Powwow and Dancing Earth !




photo of Dancing Earth at KDT  Summer Intensive !


DANCING EARTH © Paulo T. Photography www.PauloT.com

© Paulo T. Photography


LAST MONTH ( August) was excitingly busy, with

* July 30 – Aug 10 Dancing Earth on tour to Tkaronto (known my some as Toronto)  with ” RE-GENERATION : Roots and Seeds”, designed for the gardens and galleries of McMichaels Gallery, then re-staged at the Flechs Theater for Planet IndigenUs

PLS READ THIS AWESOME PREVIEW BY FRANCES MADESON ! http://writtenwordspokenword.blogspot.com/2015/08/dancing-earths-desert-journey-to-planet.html















* Aug 1-2 Natalie Benally and Justin Giehm offer workshops and performances for Survival of the First Voices Festival at Brooks/Isham Performing Arts Center in Kirkland NM ..

ssurvival of first voices collage-4

About Survival of First Voices Fest : ” Our effort aims to inspire the youth and encourage them to achieve a higher education. Many Native Americans are not close to the resources necessary to succeed and bringing the resources to them overcomes that barrier. What makes our festival different is the social justice and activism perspective that former American Indian Movement members will bring and share with the public.The entire festival consists of speakers, workshops on how to use media, round-table discussions, trade shows, art fairs, performances (musical and dance), screenings, a fashion show, comedy shows, poet slams, book signings, traditional storytelling, and a reception with an overall theme of social justice, reclaiming our history, preserving our culture, and increasing our Native presence in mainstream culture.”

Natalie says : “I was privilaged to be the performing arts coordinator for the 2014 SFVF where I helped instruct acting classes and a hip-hop dance class with my fellow Dancing Earth member Justin Giehm. Together, we taught a class to young Native children and also provided a short dance showcase where we shared our love of dance in our unique styles. What I took away from the festival as many others did was a whole vastness of talent and inspiratiion amongst Native peoples. It was amazing to see so many different areas representing and struck young people in a fun and exciting way.”

* Aug 9-25 Dancing Earth’s fifth Summer Institute gathered a small focused group of alumna for intensive incubation. Welcomed by elders of Tewa Womens United at Tsankawi, Norma Araiza ( Yoeme of Mexico/Canada ) led the land dance and indigenous contemporary dance trainings alongside Lupita Saalzar who facilitated making huaraches and planting knowledge from her home farm in Canones

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Master Classes in capoeira, urban indigenous, powwow and stilting were led by Deollo Johnson, Trey Pickett, Shane Montoya, Lumhe Micco Sampson and Robbie Pino, at host sites Ghost Ranch and the Academy for the Love of Learning. ( Thank you Stephen, Bryce, Marissa, and Thomas for all your support !)


We also made a stop to offer a dance workshop to Okay Owingeh Elementary School – Thank you Mrs Salazar for this invitation !!

* Aug 10 Rulan joined extraordinary regional Southwest leaders at the Academy for the Love of Learning new initiative of Living Stories – a collective inquiry to identify what would make a successful statewide training in creative facilitation and social change practices. This design process is of great importance to develop a vehicle for ongoing learning around arts and community engagement practices.

* Aug 11 -22 Dancing Earth’s Jacoh Cortes led the Cuicacalli Compania at San Francisco Son Jarocho Festival at Brava Theater, San Francisco

* Aug 12 Rulan and Anne Pesata join elders of the Grand Canyon Trust for summer convening at Southern Ute Cultural center, offering workshop for youth, lecture, and performance of Anne’s BASKETWEAVER solo

* Aug 13 Rulan joins Durango community members in a ceremony for the Animas river, including performative actions to express morning, and renewal.


* Aug 22-24 Dancing Earth visiting artists are featured at Fashion shows at Indigenous Fine Arts Market in Railyard Park , JG Indie , and B.Yellowtail for SWAIA at Cathedral Park




images from MJ Harrison of JG Indie Fashion show

* Aug 26-27, Rulan and Roxanne Swentzel of Flowering Tree Permaculture Institute fly to Chicago as cohorts of Catalyst Initiative, which will support them to work together over the next 6 months to co-design restorative movement practices rooted in permacultural knowledge


foto Roxanne and Rulan


Thank you  to support for our Summer Institute from

Elder Kathy Sanches and beloved grandmothers and aunties of TEWA WOMENS UNITED ;

Mr and Mrs Salazar and their farm in Canones;

Okay Owingeh elementary school students, teachers, principal and staff;

Teresa and Cindy at Leger Law and Strategy,

Bob White,  David Haiman,

Stephen, Bryce, Sarah, staff ,  cooks  and the brilliant gathering of women writers including Maxine Hong Kingston and Aimee Suzara at GHOST RANCH RETREAT AND CONFERENCE CENTER ;

Marissa, Thomas and all at the ACADEMY FOR THE LOVE OF LEARNING ;











And for support of our Canada tour,

Janis Monture, Falen Johnson and the amazing staff and artists of Planet IndigenUs

Anishnaabeg Elder Shelley Charles – beautiful inside and out

Jerry Longboat multi artist extraordinaire

cherished mentor and lighting designer Alejandro Ronceria

Ongoing cultural support of Marrie Mumford and the Little Nest family of Anishnaabeg speakers and culture carriers, as well as inspiration from Rosalie Jones – all at the Indigenous Performance Initiative in Peterborough

Brilliant costuming including  by Cherul Odom for the desert warrior and desert bloom looks, spectacular re purposed parachute skirt by Connie WindWalker, and hand dyed  tradecloth/muslin regalia by Tammy Rahr from our 2000 Dancing Earth archives !

Beth Lacombe-Wolpert , Susanna Carlisle and Briuce Hamilton for kind support of the tour

Coman Poon, Heryka Miranda , Rebecca and Susan Beayn, Norma Araiza, for local support and participation in the art making of lanterns and seed balls !

Filmmaker Cara Mumford for dedicated documentation

Chris Derksen and Sak Tzevul , each for their generous gifts of CDs

Evelyn Lefebre, prof Catherine Harris and UNM’s College of Fine Arts – Art and ECOLOGY class for their donation of yarrow seed papers made of recycled homework, as incorporated into isntallations and activities at McMichaels Gallery and Planet IndigenUs

Santee Smith Kaha:wi Dance for inviting us to lead a guest class

the joy and honor of sharing the stage with friends and colleagues Penny, Sid, Tamara, Aria, Nimkii, Sarain, Santee, Monique, Chris, and many more at this incredible festival of Indigenous luminaries !

Kalina Janik, Arun Srinivasan and the amazing tech crew at Flechs Theatre

NISH DISH caterer Johl Ringuette – so grateful for the delicious aboriginal food

the remarkable Anna, Rachel, all staff and security guards, and the amazing artists represented  at McMichael-Logo-June2014-rgb-transparent-background


and, the support from US Flag Color for Print



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