Category Workshops

GII Middlesex University, London UK

We are thrilled to be at GII Global Improvisation Initiative next week!

Dreams and a Heart will develop an awareness research during the two first days of the event alongside loads of other amazing activities.

Come and join us in this fantastic unique event.

https://giisymposium2019.sched.com/speaker/regina_mendes.1zie8z51

Wednesday, May 15
12:00pm
Thursday, May 16
11:00am
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Middlesex University, London UK

Regina will be taking Dreams and a Heart to Middlesex University’s Hendon Campus in London, UK, to develop an awareness research at the Global Improvisation Initiative.

Dreams and a Heart will investigate the impact of making dolls and meditation on our natural abilities of ‘attention’ and ‘awareness’.

Launched in 2016, the Global Improvisation Initiative (GII) is a global gathering of improvisers, artists, educators, scholars and activists promoting the evolution and advancement of improvisation.

Two days of workshops, performances, presentations, and round-tables on improvisation around the theme of awareness will be followed by two days of Open Space with Improbable’s Devoted and Disgruntled (D&D).

Alongside Dreams and a Heart, it features contributions from field leaders in improvisation including Improbable, Patti Stiles and Theresa Robbins Dudeck; sessions on improvisation in disaster relief settings and for communication in healthcare; and performances including Keith Johnstone’s Maestro. The full programme is available at https://www.improbable.co.uk/…/global-improvisation-initia…/

GII 2019 runs from 15 – 18 May at Middlesex University, The Burroughs, London NW4 4BT

IMPROBABLE.CO.UK
A global gathering of improvisers, artists, educators, scholars and activists promoting the evolution and advancement of improvisation. Co-hosted by the iii! and Middlesex University.
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Royal Academy of Arts, London UK

Last Friday we went to another InPractice event at Royal Academy of Arts in London.

All the artists were fantastic! It was great to see them sharing their work and talking about their artistic processes.

I was specially inspired by the experience of a trans artist. Her work shows many phases of the process since the early days when she became aware of who she was, going thorough her decision to transitioning, the surgery and the experience of recent years as a trans woman. She was so honest and keen to clarify many misunderstandings about gender dysphoria. All the struggle, pain and accomplishment expressed in her art, amazing!

It was also great to follow the experience of an artist who had a stroke that limited him a lot physically. His work is really funny, made us laugh, he showed amazing positivity and sense of humour despite his painful condition.

The makers were Matty, Julia, Vera, Nina and Anahita. We made 5 dolls, I’ll finish them all at home.

‘It made me feel useful. It made me feel calm.’

Thank you so much Molly and Sarah for inviting us, it is always wonderful to attend InPractice

 

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Deptford Lounge, London UK

Yesterday we went to Deptford Lounge in London at the D&D event ‘Writting: what do you need, and what can you share?’ 

Jordan, Lesley, Estee, Patrick and Tom came to make dolls, we made 6 in total.  

One of us did a long meditation, over half a hour, everybody went away, the apparently empty room was filled with a peaceful energy… it was beautiful!

‘I really enjoyed making my doll. This is such an innovative, creative, RELAXING way of focusing your energy and making friends!’

‘Wonderful sensory experience. I felt fully engaged with the process, the doll and Regina. Thank you.’

‘I felt a ring of energy pulsing through me into the doll – and back into me. It was powerful and beautiful.’ 

‘The most valuable and rewarding thing I can do is to heal my heart. A beautiful and magical moment. Powerful because it is so simple yet profound. Thank you (from the bottom of my heart).’ 

‘Sometimes the universe gives one a gift. This has been a beautiful process – it has helped me find clarity and reconnect with my body amidst a time of emotional turmoil. I have found ‘the answer’ to the turmoil. Thank you!’ 

I love this project, I love D&D. Thank you so much Sarah and Olivia for holding the space and Jen for the invitation. Once more I feel blessed by our experience together, thank you! 

 

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Royal Academy of Arts, London UK

We spend another wonderful time at RA InPractice last evening. 

John, Devon, Calliope, Sophie and Joanna joined us and we made 5 dolls. 

They told me they prefer to do something while they pay attention to the presentations so they felt it was great to be invited to make dolls. 

It was the best evening so far in terms of holding the space, it seems I am more aware of the best moments to help them during the process keeping us in silence.  

‘Very powerful holding the pulse. I liked my figure with its weird little legs, thank you.’  

‘Wonderful idea, it captured the essence of humanity. Relaxing and at times frustrating, but throughly enjoyable.’

‘What a wonderful tactile experience. So meaningful the process.’

‘Stuffed my dreams away. Now I feel like I should follow them.’ 

It was lovely to make dolls with all the makers and, as always, it was so inspiring to witness the artists sharing their work. It is an incredible event we are so happy to be part of, thank you! 

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Royal & Derngate Theatre, Northampton, UK

We spent the last weekend of January at the big annual D&D event ‘What are we going to do about Theatre and Performing Arts’ at Royal & Derngate Theatre in Northampton.

The makers were Teejay, Evaristo, Emília, Holly, Ruby, Izzy, Amber, Roisin, Ellie, Marit, David, Helen, Kate, Angelina, Joseph and Arne,  5 adults, 10 teenagers and 1 child. 

It was really special to receive so many young people during the whole weekend. They joined our session on Saturday, they were very excited about the project. At the meditation part, when I asked them to pay attention to their pulse, they started to laugh a lot. I shared it with Phelim and he said 

‘Well, there are lots of laugh in the heart.’ 

So true!!! 

I loved that many young people came to make dolls, but it was the first time though I felt I needed some help, they were asking for my attention at the same time and I made some of them wait much more than I wanted to. 

We made 16 dolls, 4 of them were finished by the makers, the others I finished myself, mainly sewed the legs, on a calmer session on Sunday. One of the dolls is named Jackson inspired by a session about transgender.  

‘Thank you Regina for letting me be part of your dream-making. It was a soothing and reflective experience – a lovely moment of calm in the middle of the storm!’

‘It was really relaxing and I found it very helpful to calm me down and I think it’s a lovely project to be able to be part in. Thank you so much. I really enjoyed it and I thought you were very kind and helpful and the whole atmosphere was lovely.’ 

‘This was the second doll I made and just like the last time it was a nice moment of rest, time to think of what has been going on that day. It’s a nice project and I hope that many people will join in and help Regina to achieve her goal.’ 

‘Making the doll is being. It is an opportunity to press pause for a moment, take time, reflect, share in stillness, in activity, in conversation. Felling my pulse during the meditation just reminded me that I am alive, I am full of life. What an achievement! Thank you!’

‘Regina and her dolls are always a nice company, helping you to relax, come back to earth, to connect. A very positive vibe is around her, an oasis, meditative centre point of D&D.’

Thank you very much for all the makers and for D&D team who once more organised a brilliant event for all of us, Thank You! 

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Omnibus Theatre last day, London UK

It was fantastic to spend the Well/Being season at Omnibus Theatre making dolls with the community.

We made 63 dolls together, 3 more than necessary to complete the display with a total of 211 dolls.

We did our Art Installation Improv Performance again.

1. The story developed through different group of makers every evening.

2. Each group was a different act.

3. Each act is improvised as we never know how each group will play.

4. The last act was the last evening when the gap was finally completed.

5. Happy end. Black out.

Most of the makers were the audience members who came to watch the show but some of them came especially to make dolls.

It is great to have the chance to talk with strangers about an artistic experience you just had together. Some of the groups did this and enjoyed it a lot. I love that Dreams and a Heart is a catalyst of this experience.

Thank you so much Marie for invite us for another season and a huge thank you for Omnibus team, I love you guys, you are such an amazing group of people who make this space the coolest and cosier place to be in London.

 

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Meditations pics last two weeks at Omnibus Theatre, London UK

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Omnibus Theatre last two weeks, London UK

In the last two weeks at Omnibus the makers were Jane, Klari, Wensheue, Arti, Tim, Ciaran, Tash, Ellen, Cindy, Erman, Lotte, Mathieu, Rachael, Alison, Val, Luca, Robert, Erica, Sarah, Julian, Gabi, Sarah, Seb, Sophie and Paul. We made 24 dolls.

I always give a tip when they start the process  – to fill the body with dreams starting on feet, hands, head, arms and legs. I ask them to forget the middle part of the body until all extremities are full. What often happens is that they forget it and can’t reach hands and feet. This week a maker did exactly that and said ’We like to take short cuts to make our lives easier but it makes it more difficult.’  

In the last day godmother and Gabi came to help sewing dolls’ legs of previous makers. The dolls were so happy to see godmother first time at this season.

‘A lovely surprinzing moment in time when you least expect it to remember through dreams a very special person who is no longer in your life. A friend you thought you would share dreams forever, but it was not to be!’

‘An unexpected experience that begins in a very practical way/ activity and then leads to a meditative moment of quiet! Thank you!’ 

‘I enjoyed making the little figure come to life by filling her with my dreams.’

‘My little doll is important because I don’t who it is. I always want to know and see everything. With this doll I happily embraced not knowing. Who will appear in my life? A man? A child? Both? None? I don’t know but he/she will come. Beautiful not- knowing… Thank you little doll.’ 

‘It was an absolute delight to come across Regina and her dolls. Had a great time!’

‘I hope my dreams come true.’

‘I did not expect to spend such a long time on this table, such a peaceful and great moment, thank you!’

‘Bellissima experience! Moment of relax and peace.’

‘It was a wonderful and peaceful experience. I really enjoyed taking the time to do something so relaxing and creative. I look forward to seeing the finished result.’

‘When I was meditating I felt a very personal connection to my doll and its dreams. It was pleasant and felt warm to be in the moment with myself and the doll.’ 

‘A moving tribute to the dynamics of loss and love, grounding.’

‘What a wonderful experience. Regina has the most wonderful, soothing energy and it is a joy to be part of this project. I have walked away feeling very connected to all wonderful humans out there- Thank you Regina!’

‘A wonderful way to quiet the mind and escape the hustle and bustle of the city. It was a beautiful creative experience coached perfectly by Regina- thank you so much.’

Thank You everybody for these wonderful weeks at Omnibus. 

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Meditation pics at Omnibus Theatre second week, London UK

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