A Return to the Realignment of the Creative Process

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The journey of a creative spirit is unique to each individual who embraces their true nature and walks the path that is congruent with their hearts and their essence. Every person is creative and is a part of the overall creative energy that is life itself. To the degree we embrace the creative elements of our being is up to us and the choices we make to live our lives in line with our authentic selves. 

I knew from a young age I was creative but had no idea what that meant or that one could even live a life as a creative being. Growing up in a traditional and conservative home where creativity was not a part of our everyday lives, one never realizes that living in that way that is congruent is even possible. It is much like growing up in a home that is heteronormative and not seeing that there are people out there that think and feel the way you do. When the world is created for a particular group of people or an idealized ideology that excludes anything “different”, one never realizes that who they really are can be a beautiful way of being; truly being oneself. 

I went through a childhood of posing. I played all kinds of sports from baseball to basketball from football to wrestling and even gymnastics. I was not very good at any of them although I did have the most success in wrestling and gymnastics. The clear thing looking back on all of that was the throughline of movement. I was a mover and excellent when I was physically in my body and in a constant state of flow regardless of the quality or energy of that movement. 

I had always secretly wanted to sing and act while I was doing all of this posing. When I finally got to high school I met others who wanted similar things and realized there is a whole world out there who wanted similar things as me. I began exploring the idea of acting when taking theatre classes and getting involved in plays and eventually musicals. This was a shift towards that alignment with creativity and felt incredibly freeing. Was it possible to do something you really loved and it all be ok? 

And so began the journey of uncovering the creative spirit. I had the opportunity to be able to be in many different shows throughout the remainder of my high school experience and beyond. I followed the path of voice lessons, auditions and professional engagements. The career began to grow and the circles of opportunity kept expanding. Even so, there always seemed to be something missing that was not quite fulfilled. Until I realized how much dance was necessary for the next level of success. 

Once I had this realization I found myself drawn into the creative process of physical and energetic transformation. I was exposed to modern dance for the first time and felt like I was finally “home”. I was able to be in body and in spirit while I was exploring the fullness of my creative voice and simultaneously the fullness of my spirit. What was lacking in my spiritual practice was tied directly to my body moving in ways that revealed so much more about myself than I could have ever imagined. 

The introduction of Tai Chi as a physical manifestation of Taoism was a significant connection for me. So as I grew deeper within my dance training I also grew deeper in my spiritual practice. The evolution of me as a physical being was in line with my evolution as a spiritual being. I finally had a vehicle as a way to more fully understand my true creative nature and they wonderfully went hand and hand. 

And so the creative journey has always been the harmony of movement and spirit. All of my creative work is always deeply rooted in eastern esoteric traditions translated through contemporary creative explorations. Energy has alway been a part of my philosophy and is how I see choreography. For me, choreography is the art of shaping energy in space creating three dimensional visceral worlds as a way of exploring concepts and ideas of the heart. 

It is another reason that I rarely focus my work on gender or sexuality despite being a queer memeber of the LGBTQIA+ community. In my work I focus on the beings in the work and not so much those folks trying to portray something or someone. We work through the energy of the individuals within the landscape of the world and build from there. It has always been about being a dancer’s choreographer and helping the dancer feel comfortable in their own skin within the worlds they inhabit. 

I see the spectrum of yin and yang in all of my work. Not the western understanding of opposites or binary limitations, but rather the true nature of both yin and yang as a part of one another and that are within one another to even exist. It is always a reminder that we are all genders and all energies and elements. We are constantly finding our own harmony that is congruent with who we are and the energies of our body and our spirit. It is from this place, being in our own alignment, that we find the true nature of our voice and the ability to express its creative nature to its fullest. 

So even if I am not expressing my viewpoint as a queer body in motion, not being the perceived activist, I am artfully sharing a quiet viewpoint of a spectrum of love through a non-traditional approach to movement and creative expression.  Creativity is in and of itself activism at it’s best. The art of making and becoming, creating and expressing despite living in a world obsessed with money, success and fame is a revolutionary way of existing. 

Although I came out as gay when I was beginning my creative process, I feel as if I have not always come out or been honost with my creative career often hiding the ritualistic nature of my work or even the deep spiritual connection within my work. Yes, it has always been there, but I have not really allowed folks to fully see the depth of that information and how it is so significant in all of my teaching as well. Even in the EBAS work I have hidden a lot of the information away out of the fear of making folks uncomfortable with something foreign or unknown to them. And now it is time to let go of that and tell the story. 

It is time to tell the story of how I have come to this place in my life through a creative process alongside a spiritual journey. It is time to bring all three aspects of my being into harmony, not feeling the need to isolate the parts of myself for others’ comfortability. It is time for my comfortability and my peace finally after all of these years. Time to release the fullness of the creative spirit and embrace the multidimensional creative, energetic and sexual being that I am. Time to share that process and time to let go of the shame and fear of rejection or acceptance. I have fully accepted myself and now it is time to just be that in every way I am capable. After all, doing that is allowing myself to be present and visible for those that were never able to see it in their worlds before. It’s a way of being that champion so someone else can be the champion for themselves. 

A Return to Water


This summer has been all about transformation on so many levels. Yesterday was another example of making conscious choices to shift life in a few different ways and return the body to water. It was a time of repatterning and finding lost strength. 

It has been about two years since I have found myself in a pool and swimming. The pandemic forced everything to close and the indoor pools were no exception. Like many, our routines of working out in whatever ways worked best for us, were no longer at our disposal. 

After doing all of this internal energy work, walking and running, I knew it was time to dive back into the waters that brought me great joy and grounding. It had been so long and I knew I had lost so much strength in not doing so. It was now time to change all that. 

Since my gym closed their pool I needed to find another option to swim again but had no idea where I would go. I held out from using the aquatics Center at VCU for so long I forgot that this might be an option. 

I shied away from this option due to students being present. But that just reminded me that perhaps this might be the time to reevaluate that wall and find myself in a place that was convenient for me over any other issues that were holding me back. 

On Tuesday of this week I went ahead and went for it. I signed up for a membership and set foot in the gym for the first time since coming here 20 years ago. It felt good to bridge that gap and to see how beautiful a place it was. 

Yesterday I found the courage to adventure back to the pool and begin my swim practice. Oddly my silent goal was simply to go, get in and just see how we would do. I exceeded that goal by going ahead and swimming for about a half an hour. It felt great. 

Mind you, it was hard as could be but at the same time felt so wonderfully freeing. To be back in the water and rebuilding a relationship with my body and that element was divine. I was actually rather giddy in the process. It reminded me how much I have missed it but had been ignoring or rather not listening to the desire to be physical in this way. 

What a delightful reminder and oddly a beautiful way to reinspire even more wellness, strength and courage. I was so inspired by it that I went overboard in purchasing some new swim trunks this morning. Excited that they will be arriving this weekend for my next pool adventure on Sunday. 

I have decided a swim schedule for Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday will be a very manageable way to get back into being. A beautiful way to get back into the body. This added to the EBAS and walking will be an amazing cross training. It is delightful being on the path of being empowered by movement on all levels. 

It’s good to be back in the body and back into water. It’s good to be back to me

Returning to Body

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For this new moon I focused on setting my intentions and one of the things that I put out there was to find more ways in which I could alter my habitual patterning and find out what else I might be able to rekindle or ignite in terms of my creativity. There are a lot of things I would like to reawaken and reinspire myself to do. 

One of those things was to take risks creatively and to find myself in situations that will provide me an opportunity for greater exploration and discovery. Wonderfully I am one of six folks sharing and teaching for a queer creative workshop series. One of the things that is important to me is to support this series so as it can build momentum and a community. 

I have decided to not just teach but also to energetically and financially support this wonderful adventure. So, I have chosen a few of the workshops to attend and today was the first of them. It was rather exciting to sign up and get my energy focused and ready for this process. 

It was rather exciting to be a student again. Very exciting to not have to be the instructor or hold the space as I normally would. It wa such a luxury to just be and do in the ways of a person exploring the process and not driving it. 

I really enjoyed going through the creative process and being able to find a new way of making that was different from my own or at least inspired by a whole new perspective. I was also dancing so freely and with abandonment. Such a divine reverie that I have not felt in a long time. 

I was in my body again discovering in community. I was exploring and expanding movement possibilities with the focus on my quads as the inspiration or spark for how I was feeling about gender or feeling gender in my body. So good to fall back to the essence of my being simply by dropping down into my body. 

I realize how much I have missed this. I realized how much I would like to get back into the studios like this and just do and be to become all I can in my body. Time is wide long away and it would be nice to be in love with my moving body again and rekindle that passion and love of physicality and spirit. 

And so I found myself again. I remembered my physical being that I lost many years ago. I see him again. I feel him returning with every gesture, movement and phrasing. The light is retiring and there is a reanimation in process. Such a joy to return. 

Returning to (W)right

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It was nice to take a breath yesterday and just focus on my presentation for the Corps de Ballet International conference yesterday. It was such a nice sharing and such a wonderful deepening of my practice through sharing.

However, I did miss spending the time letting my thoughts turn into visible words. Yes, I think writing is righting me and I am so grateful for that transformation and development of that skill for myself. I have for so long been afraid and ashamed of being dyslexic that I tried to hide rather than tried to overcome. Fear and shame do a number on us especially when we let them keep a grip on so many aspects of ourselves.

What became very clear in my sharing yesterday was that the information lives deeply within me. Through writing extensively about my research I found myself so aware of the details, the arcs and the flow of my work that I did it all without relying on my notes or the “script”. It was incredibly freeing and inspiring. When you write you learn and you know.

I presented again today and found myself in the same way. Breaking free and finding oneself sitting in the center of ones being is incredibly exhilarating. I was in practice both as a presenter but also as the practitioner. I could breathe with my students as well as direct my students. I could deepen with them and simultaneously guide them to work or go even deeper. It is such a joy to see transformation and joy being lived and experience in front of your eyes and in real time.

I think that is one of the beautiful things about the EBAS work is that it allows us the time and space we need for transformation. Imagine if we allowed time and space for ourselves in all aspects of our lives? Imagine if we listened to the language of our bodies and our gut instincts more to see how we might do so?

Several writings back I spoke of making a conscious choice to not do so much or feel a push to do creative projects during the pandemic but to rather take the time I needed to go inward for the research. It worked in ways that I am still seeing benefits in. We are writing long before we put pen to paper or type our actual first word. We need to honor that and honor the ways in which research looks very different for all of us.

The same is true of work. As a professor and an artist it may appear that I am not working because I do not hold a nine to five job, but oddly, I am really working whenever I am awake and wonderfully when my dreams are making all kinds of sense out of those profound connections during the waking hours.

This another reminder that we can’t all follow one particular value system. It just doesn’t work. Work looks different just like we all look different. Different work happens differently for different people. And it’s this realization that has helped me to relearn what my work looks like as I re(w)right my life and find great acceptance of the ways I work best and make my best work.

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 30

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Well here we are, day thirty! I get to write my last entry into this thirty day challenge. I get to complete an arc and let go of this practice. For now. 

It has been delightful to write on a regular basis even if I fell short of the thirty consecutive days. I still feel very satisfied with the work and my progress on so many levels. As I mentioned in an earlier post, we still can succeed even if our attempts are not perfect. And that right there is a reminder of having humility in our work so that if we falter, we know we can still succeed. 

What I do find wonderfully fortuitous is that tomorrow I begin a wonderful sharing of my research in the Corps de Ballet International Conference. I am fortunate to be sharing my work on how I use the Five Elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine as a framework for teaching EBAS, ballet and all other creative aspects of my pedagogy arsenal. 

This sharing will start off with a more conceptual approach to the physical practice so folks can conceptualize the overarching principles and begin to see how they relate to the actual physical practice of EBAS as a bridge for the traditional form of ballet. This reimagining of how we animate the body to inhabit the practice of ballet might be helpful for those who are looking for support with bringing in new people and interest into the form. It is especially supportive of being inclusive due to its individual body centered approach. 

It is my hope that I am able to encourage a shift from a linear cognitive aesthetic approach to the art and to open a more multidimensional visceral imagistic opportunity for senatorial learning. This shift allows the body to be honored for its wisdom allowing it to be the focus and guide to the archeology of technique. As we excavate, revealing the heart of our moving spirit, we are cautiously aware of all that will be uncovered and revealed through its process. 

Part of the many difficulties in the training of folks is that we forget that the body houses trauma and that there are blockages, incongruencies and conflicts hidden in the depths of our physical being. Conscious or not. And if we are trying to transform the body we cannot forget that we too have to transform our spirit. We cannot forget that movement is in fact the only way to fully release and heal from our trauma. 

This approach focusing on the Five Elements allows us that collaborative and holistic approach to integrating the body bringing it back to its true nature and in harmony or symphony with its energetic self. This is incredibly inspiring to me and I am most excited to share it with folks from all aspects of the field. 

Now mind you, in working in these ways we do not diminish the training protocol and the necessity for neuromuscular repatterning. I’m fact, this kind of work increases the speed at which you are able to train dancers as they become conscious of their bodies in ways that support greater senatorial and neural connections to their work and their practice. 

Imagine an environment that is training awareness of body, mind and spirit so as to also be training voice and agency in one’s own relationship to their practice? Imagine also diminishing pain and also injuries as dancers are more aware of how to execute movements and choreography more wisely and judiciously?

Wonderfully, this way of working helps dancers find deeper connections to the creative process of making work as well. The elements are a support system as they all correspond to one another as well as have yin and yang organ relationships in addition to governing emotion, seasons, qualities, dynamics and above all; energies. You can see having this kind of awareness allows folks to tap into creative connections within their bodies and within the framework of a piece that are trying to create. 

As you can see I am super excited to share all of this with the conference and to share with you all that it is precisely this connection that has made the pathway for writing my books come into clarity. Yes, there will be a series of books related to this topic that points to technique, improvisation, composition, choreography and partnering. 

It has been this challenge that has given me the space to listen to what was being shared with me all along. It is this opportunity of doing that has sparked the flame and shown me how to go about sharing all of this. Even in this writing I have been inspired to write the other things and have been making wonderfully joyful progress. 

Even if this is the end of this particular cycle, it is the beginning of another. I get to share the next one with you as well and am looking forward to dropping little sections of it so you can taste it with me. 

Thank you for walking with me through these thirty entries and days! Thank you for your energy and your compassion. Whether you knew you were sharing it or not, it has been felt and appreciated. Thank you for letting me share and being a part of this transformational journey! 

Love and Light

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 29

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As I approach the end of this challenge I feel a strong sense of gratitude for embarking on this journey and all that has revealed itself in doing so. In the doing and being of it all I feel a sense of satisfaction and joy in seeing something through in addition to a sense of freedom and openness for an endless flow of creativity. 

In one of my readings yesterday I was struck by the notion of changing the energy of my to do list by reframing it by calling it my “get to do list”. And just like that it holds a new energy and a new light. I get to do so many wonderful things in my day and that reframing sets a tone and a vibration for a positive and engaged practice of doing. 

I get to do this challenge. I get to write. I get to do EBAS. I get to read. I get to research. I get to walk with my dogs. I get to take them to the dog park. I get to eat well. I get to hydrate. I get to care for myself. I get to meditate. I get to practice my presentation. I get to be good and do good. I get to be the light that is the flame of the universe. 

It was a profound rewiring yesterday and just what I needed to add to this practice of writing and the positive perspective just doing the challenge has shifted for me. I encourage you to shift your language and vibration by doing the same. It’s as if the small addition of get transforms the energy to a higher level and is full of gratitude. 

Yesterday was just so lovely because of it. Even though I was doing a movement healing and wellness session followed by a tech rehearsal for my conference, I was in a state of joy because I got to do it all. And isn’t that a delight that we get to do things as opposed to having to do things. 

What if we never asked the question of ourselves and others of “what do you have to do today?” What if we asked one another what do you get to do today? Would that not change the vibration of our relationship with that person? Might it set a different tone for the work they get to do out in the world that day? Might that energy, light and joy be a beacon for others? 

It is really lovely how such a small shift is capable of transforming the direction of energy and thought. Such a small shift to transform the intentions of the day. And in this way we are never without creativity. We are always able to get creative and to live in the flow of creativity. 

I get to post this 29th entry of a 30 day challenge today. I get to celebrate small successes and see myself finishing this journey with a wonderful energy. I get to enjoy the sense of accomplishment and carry that energy with me all day. I get to live a day filled with joyful energy. 

And so I close by wishing you well. Yes, I get to wish you well. What do you get to do today? 

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 28

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I was reminded of a memory from four years ago when I was in Arezzo, Italy teaching a EBAS Level I teachers certification workshop. I used to love going there on a regular basis to teach dance and to spend about 6-8 weeks there at a time. It was such a gift to settle into such a lovely place surrounded by folks who wanted to be submerged in the arts and in Italian culture. 

I consider myself fortunate to have had the opportunity to be a part of the Academia del Arte’s summer arts program for about 6 years and then to continue a collaborative relationship with their program by returning to teach certification courses off and on for the next four years. It was such a delight and certainly a creative luxury. 

Now that we are on this side of the pandemic and there are openings happening, it’s time to open the heart for the next European opportunity. I am not quite sure where that will be or even how it will come about, but I am putting it out there that I am ready to collaborate in ways that combine dance and being in beautiful places with engaged and passionate people. 

And now it is out there. Time to give space to it so it travels to where it needs to land. It has worked many times before and with an open heart, it will connect again. 

Oddly this is how all of my study abroad relationships began. Having conversations with the universe opened conversations with people. First was the lighting and dance program in Costa Rica that created so many wonderful opportunities and was the seed for creating my project based company, Amaranth. The unfolding and work that evolved from that has been mind blowing. 

The second opportunity was the Arezzo one where I was searching for places to host a new study abroad program in Rome. I sent an email to request information about spaces and would you know I ended up on the summer arts faculty at the Academia. As I mentioned before that unfolded into a ten year relationship that was simply magical. 

Most recently, after the shift and changes of Italy I was sitting at a recruitment table for VCU when I was approached by Michael Foley to see if I would be interested in working with him and USF to build the semester study abroad program. He was taking his brilliant summer program and blowing it up to create the larger semester program. It was brilliant and began a lovely collaborative relationship that is still unfolding. I am so grateful to him and all of our students who get to have this incredible experience. 

Another delightful experience has been a six year relationship with Perth, Australia where I have had the incredible opportunity to build a relationship with that community in ways I never imagined possible. Teaching Master Class workshops, EBAS teachers certifications and setting work on three colleges and companies has been delightful. It will be nice to return in 2022 for certifications and hopefully a creative opportunity as well. It would be glorious to open a relationship with folks in Sydney to share the work there as well. 

And so now, I open my heart to the next opportunity to share EBAS, Fundamental Conscious Movement and many creative projects wherever there is the space and willingness. I release this into the universe to connect and engage folks that are hungry to connect through these unique ways of holistically training the body and creatively engaging one’s voice. It will be a delight to see where these energies take me. 

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 27

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Sitting down to write and tackle today’s entry I was focusing on a completely different thought than what I am about to share. I was writing the date in my doc and received a DM from a dear friend half a world away. The messages touched me so and I just feel that perhaps it was sent just in time so that I could speak to it. 

The message that was sent was one of love and support from an ally and friend. She expressed and acknowledged the ending of Pride month and wanted to let me know, as well as the friends she knows who are dear to me, that we are loved and in her thoughts. 

This simple message communicating love and support is so moving and so gracious. In many ways this is a show of not only live and friendship but also of being seen for all of who you are. Something that is rather difficult for people to do or accept in others. To be able to live in the fullness of your being and be welcomed into the fold of others is really an amazing thing. 

So many people live in fear or in denial because they are unable to be their complete selves. It is difficult to have to walk a path that is not yours or does not allow you to be the complete being that you are. It can be painful and debilitating in addition to destructive. 

When you are brought up in a world made for others you don’t ever feel you belong. When there is no representation for you to see yourself and to recognize yourself in others, the tendency is to hide away out of shame and fear of rejection. And this is precisely why it is important to celebrate Pride the way in which we do. It is important to be present and visible for those to see that they too belong. 

To be present in one’s full self is to be at one with oneself. To stand in the center of your world without fear and without harassment is empowering and freeing. It should be an inspiration for others and should be celebrated all year long and within every day and in every action of our being. One can be proud even in simply being. 

Even though I am an artist who lives presently in my work but don’t necessarily focus on queer issues, who I am still lives within all of my work. My strength, sensuality, intimacy, passion, drive, curiosity, courage, sensitivity, softness, weakness, quietude and power are all a part of each work I make. I create multidimensional worlds in which all people are welcome to be a part of rather than a viewpoint that expresses a single thought. 

Images connect to the humanity within all people and speak to the nervous system and freeing of the neuromuscular blockages of trauma that so many have felt. My work, through the lens of a queer man acts as a compassionate bridge to see oneself and ones humanity within it. The work is a safe place where the dancer doesn’t have to put on a character but only simply to be their full selves. Just as the audience does not have to understand anything outside themselves but rather feel a soulful connection to what is within. 

So yes, I am a queer artist making work that is accessible to all and am proud to be present in that work amd present in the making and sharing of that work. It has always been a desire to represent myself fully in my work, the classroom and in my personal world. That in itself is activism. And for that I am proud. And for that I celebrate. We celebrate. 

This is why a small message can remind us of the work, the necessity and the importance of being present in all that we are and to take time to fully celebrate our complete selves. It is important to be a champion for others. And I am grateful for the allies in my life who remind me they are there and there is love. 

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 26

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Well welcome to July! Can you believe it is the beginning of July already? I am not even sure I know where June went with all the hustle and bustle and whirlwind of creativity. What I do know is that I am super grateful for the month for all kinds of reasons. 

First I must say that despite not getting my thirty days all in I am still grateful for the process and all the rich energy that has come from it all. That and just the energy that is a result from going ahead anyway. Just doing the job regardless. And isn’t that in itself a lesson to just do it regardless of the outcome? 

I am continually reminded of that very important lesson, just do your job. Be good by doing. Do good by doing. Just commit and let the work be carried by the divine. All too often we feel as if we have to carry the ball across the finish line but really, we don’t. We have help. Yes, all the magic that the universe is capable of if we simply set the job in motion. 

I have been recognizing this time and again this month. Doing the work regardless of what might become with a faith that whatever does is what is best. Just today there were two happenings in which the energy and creativity I was working with showed up in two folks I interacted with. The divine occurrence fell into place and now I know the next steps I have been waiting for. No push, just patience.

Can we be patient in our presence? Are we capable of waiting for the line? Waiting for the step? Waiting for the right information to complete whatever creative project we are working on? And perhaps it doesn’t just have to be creative either. It could be in every aspect of our life, too. 

It is rather peculiar that in being present we have to be patient. We have to wait and create the space for the magic to exist and to work. We have to be open in our faith to let what unfolds be even more than we could have ever imagined or dreamed. What if there are energies out there conspiring for even better than we can imagine and yet we just simply can’t open our hearts enough to let them be filled. 

So I move into July with just five days left of writing to complete my thirty day challenge. Proud of the completion but even more satisfied with all that has come of this delightful journey. Let’s see how many days will actually come of all this giddiness. 

Enjoy your month and start it off by doing something delightfully in line with your heart. Be congruent in your spirit and just let the heart open so it can be filled with whatever it desires. Oh, and be prepared for the overflow. It can happen.

Thirty Days of Thoughts: Day 25

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Remember that one is never “in” or “out” of love; one IS love. People simply have mistaken the in and out for the beings that pass through our lives. So if the heart is aching, it may only be that one might not be able to comprehend the shift in ones life. But be mindful that love has not left you, it is you. You are the physical embodiment of love. Walk in that light today and look at someone and tell them you love them. Even if it is whispered soft enough with only an internal intention. You will be heard regardless. Consider this my whisper to you.