Earth Keepers

Ocean Alive Sea Alive, one of nine songs in the Earth Keepers musical

Earth Keepers is a meditation in song and verse on humans inter-relationship with Earth and the impact of war.

On Saturday, July 30th at 1pm & 7pm, Cultivating Peace Vermont will host two free performances of Earth Keepers, a mindfulness-based musical on the State House Lawn. This 45-minute, interactive musical combines Earth-based chants that invite audience participation with monologue reflections on the interdependent nature of human existence and the impact of war/violence. Bells of mindfulness, participatory singing, and guided meditation will establish an environment rich in opportunity for engagement and ideally serve as a respite from daily stressors. We offer these two performances as gifts to our Montpelier/Central Vermont community. A resting place to settle into the comfort of the Earth after over two years of surviving a global pandemic. 

Email CultivatingPeaceVermont@gmail.com to volunteer for the production.

We are grateful to The Hummingbird Center for Common Ground and Barre Universalist Church for donating rehearsal space.

Thank you to the many individual donors and community business sponsors that have made this production possible, with special thanks to Vermont Bicycle Shop and Hunger Mountain Coop!

Directors

Music Director
Heidi Wilson

Heidi Wilson’s passion is to share songs in service to community and the wild world; songs that celebrate the seasons, bring groups together, offer thanks, muster courage, and make room for healing and grieving. She is drawn to the potent and surprising journey of deep-listening and emergent music making. She has also been exploring the traditional music of her Swedish ancestors and loves to share old songs of the forests and fields. Heidi has been leading community singing groups in Vermont for the last 15 years including work with the Summit School of Traditional Music and Culture, Village Harmony, Burlington Integrated Arts Academy, Young Tradition Vermont, Unitarian Church of Montpelier, Interfaith Partners of St Johnsbury, and Sterling College.  HeidiAnnWilson.com 

Director
Sequana Aurora Skye

Sequana Aurora Skye, BA, MFA is a writer, performer and creator who believes that the power of storytelling is essential to humans throughout time. Her career began early when, at age 10, she adapted and directed The Wizard of Oz for a school assembly. Since then she has expanded her art practice as a guest artist with The Arts Bus in Randolph, helmed the first all-female team for the 48 Hour Film Slam at the Green Mountain Film Festival and written a one-woman play, Mouths of Babes. Sequana lives in Central Vermont and is deeply honored to direct this Cultivating Peace performance.

Ceremonial Singers

Opeyemi Parham

Opeyemi Parham is a family physician who moved from feral to rogue status over her 22 years of conventional doctoring. For the last 16 years she has advocated for health consumers to explore the gaps in their wellness strategies: 
–adding more sensuality
–acknowledging the roles our sexuality and our  spirituality can play in health/disease
— owning our suicidal/homicidal tendencies (e.g. WAR), 
She “edu-tains” as a healing artist and an artist, healing, happily retired and living in Montpelier.

Aro Veno

Aro Veno carries a strong desire for peace, care for the earth and each other, justice and love to prevail.  Aro expresses this desire in music and in how she lives.  Aro has been writing songs, singing and praying for transformation in the world for most of her adult life.  She came of age in the early 60’s and the principles of peace and love have stayed a part of her consciousness for all these years.  
Aro Veno’s music can be enjoyed on Soundcloud.

Jessica Goodlin

Jessica Goodlin holds a BFA in music theater from Shenandoah University in Va. After college Jessica went on to study in NYC. Jessica has performed with Children’s theater and has performed with Opera North in Lebanon,NH. Jessica’s favorite credit was working with Tomie dePaola recording a song for his CD which is part of his book The Magical World of Stega Nona: A Treasury.  Jessica just recently performed in LNT’s production of All Together Now, in Montpelier and works at a preschool in East Montpelier coincidentally called AllTogetherNow! 

Shanda Williams

Shanda Williams, is a grateful resident of the State of Vermont.  A native from Hartford, Connecticut, Shanda has lived in Montpelier for over 4 years.  When she is not working in the NonProfit sector or pet sitting (one of her favorite pastimes), she enjoys singing and being Treasurer of the Montpelier Community Gospel Choir and an active Board member of Lost Nation Theater.  Giving back is part of her journey, and she has recently begun campaigning with The Vermont Kindness Project, to help teach others about the power of trauma informed care and resilience! 

Kathryn Tufano

Kathryn Tufano is delighted to co-produce and perform in Earth Keepers. She recently moved to Montpelier and has become acquainted with her new community through the many offerings of Cultivating Peace Vermont. She started dancing at the age of three and was a professional dancer for over 30 years, based in New York City. During her career she performed with many dance companies and toured extensively throughout the US and Europe. Earth Keepers marks her singing debut.

Mica on Drums


Mica is a percussionist and harper living in Central VT. They have been playing the music of various traditions for almost 25 years. Mica plays Haitian and Cuban conga, doumbek, Irish bodhrán, Western concert percussion, drum set, and Irish harp. They are addicted to polyrhythms and weird time signatures.


Happy to welcome Ornella Matta-Figueroa! Picture and Bio coming soon…


Community Consultant

Pat Carstensen

Pat Carstensen found her “heart home” here in Vermont in the late 1970s.  During those years she has volunteered for various organizations like the Barre Opera House, Lost Nation Theater, Kellogg Hubbard Library and Unitarian Church of Montpelier. She is excited about Earth Keepers and is happy to be of support.




Producer

Producer
Ginger Cloud

Ginger Cloud is a founding member of Cultivating Peace Vermont and wrote the mindfulness based ceremonial musical Earth Keepers. All production questions, performance inquiries, and volunteer requests can be directed to Ginger at CultivatingPeaceVermont@gmail.com.
Ginger is a mindfulness meditation practitioner and prolific artist. For the past two decades she has created art through various mediums including photography, fiber arts, jewelry, collage, paper mache puppets, and creative writing. Ginger’s art work has been displayed in community settings and festivals in Oregon and Vermont. A native Vermonter, Ginger spent her young adult life in Eugene, Oregon and now enjoys living in Barre Town, Vermont with her husband, two dogs and cat.

We are committed to grow diversity and inclusion in this performance. We encourage any person regardless of race, ethnicity, age, gender, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, economic status and other diverse backgrounds to participate.

” While the energy of our thoughts, speech, and action is powerful, this energy is infinitely more powerful when we join together with others. When we come together as a group, with a common purpose and commitment to mindful action, we produce an energy of collective concentration far superior to our own individual concentration. This energy further helps us to cultivate compassion and understanding. If we practice mindful sitting, walking, speaking, and listening together as a group, then everyone can feel the collective energy and everyone can receive nourishment and healing.

This collective energy can lead to collective insight and to a collective awakening.

Our collective compassion, mindfulness, and concentration nourishes us, but it can also help to reestablish the Earth’s equilibrium and restore balance. Together, we can bring about real transformation for ourselves and for the world.”
~ Thay, Love Letter to the Earth



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