545 sparkling faces greeted us at Le Roi Daniels School today spellbound from start to finish! All dressed in Christmas colours (including the teachers) I looked out onto splashes of red and green as their energy flowed directly to me!
Thanks to Ms. Cathy Farr-Kokot (music teacher and an old buddy of mine) we were able to catch the enthusiasm with a few pictures. Their impressive participation was sustained to the very end. “Must be restored!” they called out emphatically! I could feel tears welling up in my eyes! They got it! They understood the message. Old things have value. We must cherish them.
At our talk afterward, children listened to each other thoughtfully. Some bravely stood in front of their peers asking intelligent questions or commenting on how they felt about the story. I am talking K to 3, people!!!
“Was that story real, Lana?” many asked me in the hallway. I reassured them that it was from my imagination. That took a moment for them to figure out.
About five years ago I had the chance to do an Artist in Residency at this school. Those students are long gone but the pervading spirit of thanksgiving and genuine kindness permeated every corner of the building. Hats off to Mrs. Andrea Taylor, the principal, for having a joy-filled community intrigued by story and happily willing to say so! The never-ending hugs from staff and students was a topper to my day.
Now why am I tearing up? Well, because when the work leads you to that kind of acceptance you need to take a moment and feel its glow!
“Keep doing this,” called out one of the teachers as he left for the day.
You bet I will!
Thank you Le Roi Daniels School!!!
The Fools have awakened! What a blast! The Montessori School of Calgary has continued to surprise and delight me!
I have learned that it is difficult to take pictures when you are belly laughing!
Our collective journey with the upper elementary students took major leaps forward as we simplified our ideas and just went for it! Playing with balance and imbalance we embarked with hilarious results!
Now the Fool is appearing in various environments, finding solutions to obstacles and getting stronger with each transition.
Emotional mapping is key to finding our way and the ideas were being offered so quickly…..well, as you can see by my scrawl…..it was exciting!!!!
More to come! Much love to all of the students! So much fun!!!!
After 40 years of performance experience, I still thrive on reaching people one story at a time. It doesn’t matter where I present or how many are listening. Connection is everything!
I always ask myself,
“What is the purpose of the story?”
“How will I love the listener through the process?”
“How will I honour them?”
These questions are key. It removes the ego or, at least, keeps it at bay.
(St. James Foyer)
There was a sea of children from kindergarten to grade six at St. James School today (thank you for booking us Carla Rea-Gilmour) who willingly gestured with me as I told my story “The Old House”. In one part I invited them to sing not knowing if they would be able. They sang, “Oh Come all ye Faithful” with such heart that I stopped leading them and listened. The joy I felt in that moment is hard to explain. It wasn’t just MY story anymore, it was OUR story and they carried me through to the very end.
No longer a solo performer, the union made the story stronger. I felt blessed!
The musical backdrop intrigued them so much that one class hung back after to show us their dance moves as Clayton Jeffrey shared some techno coolness.
I was hugged, talked to and thanked by the whole community. I gulped at the amount of donations under their Christmas tree! Given the generous welcoming people I met today, I am sure the hampers will continue to grow.
One little boy talked to me about how sad he was that some of the old houses were being torn down near him. His wide-eyed thoughtful compassion made me feel like I had been given a small glimpse into the world of angels with tremendous affirmation.
It’s these moments that sustain me.