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  HomeResourcesCertified Facilitators • Joëlle Danant
Joëlle Danant


Location: Brooklyn, New York (Park Slope)

Web Site: www.VocalMuse.com

EMail: VocalMuse@gmail.com

Joëlle Danant is a singer, composer, Native American (NA) style flute player, certified Music for People (MFP) instructor in music improvisation, educator, and interfaith minister. Since her practice of playing the NA flute (2007), Joëlle has been invited to play at such events as One Spirit Learning Alliance (OSIS)'s Cosmic Mass (Fourth Universalist Society, NYC, September 19, 2008); and at interfaith ritualist Barbara Biziou's Spring Equinox Celebration (OSIS, NYC, March 2011).

Joëlle leads the monthly Great Spirit Native Flute Circle (OSIS, NYC). She also plays piano and harmonium, mostly for self-accompaniment.

Joëlle leads one-day, Music for People (MFP) satellite workshops called "Music Improvisation for the Soul" in her beautiful home in Park Slope, Brooklyn – please see MFP's calendar of events for the schedule. Joëlle has been teaching vocal improvisation -- sometimes combined with movement improvisation – as well as sacred singing and music improvisation (all instruments), for adults in the New York/New Jersey area since 1997, as well as for the Dance New England Summer Camp in Poland Spring, Maine (2006-09).

Joëlle is part of a team of musicians/interfaith ministers, whereby she co-creates and co-leads monthly interfaith Taize worship services – offering original sacred chants, meditations, inspirational readings and prayers. (One Spirit Seminary/OSIS, NYC). The Taize service was also offered at Integral Yoga Institute (August and September 2010).

Joëlle leads kirtans, i.e., Hindu-style, participatory call and response concerts, using original melodies for traditional sacred scriptures in yoga centers in NYC and at Kirtanarama, Figment Festival, Governor's Island, NY; and was invited to sing for Amma, renowned Indian Hugging Saint, with viola player Karen Olson (Manhattan Center, NYC, July 3rd, 2011).

She co-leads the Hanuman Chalisa* chant, using original melodies, at monthly & annual chanting events in yoga centers (*traditional hymn to the Hindu Deity Hanuman, made up of 40 verses in Abade, ancient Hindi language).

Joëlle was formerly Chairperson of Music for People's Musicianship & Leadership Program (2001-03), and is a graduate from that program. She has served as retreat facilitator for the Foundation for Universal Sacred Music (2003), and instructor at the Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY (stress free series; 2004). Joëlle has also taught vocal music to youth, including classes on improvisational music, nature and eco-spirituality for the Urban Environmental Youth Corps/ YMCA of Jamaica (2006).

Joëlle has also served as a respondent singer for renowned devotional musicians Robert Gass (NY Open Center concert, NYC, November 2010); and Krishna Das on his CD's and at his kirtans in NYC (Town Hall, Feb. 4, 2009; and Church of St-Paul & St-Andrew, Nov. 30 2010). Joëlle has been invited as guest singer and/or NA flute player to concerts, kirtans, and sacred services on the East Coast (Interfaith Service for Peace at Integral Yoga Institute, NYC, September 2011; Peace Sabbath at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY, September 2010; annual benefit concert for the Bonobos & the Congo Forest at Jivamukti Yoga School, NYC, 2007 & 2008); Satya and Ma Kirtan at Anam Cara Foundation, Bedford Hills, NY, 2008-2009).

Joëlle has been studying and performing jazz, world music (especially singing Brazilian standards in Portuguese), sacred music, and integrated vocal & movement improvisation since 1994. Her first musical training was in classical piano for 7 years as a child.

Joëlle was part of a multi-media performing group -- involving visual art, dance and music -- as improvisational vocalist, music composer, dancer, and co-creator of performances' conceptualizations (2003-04). She has been occasionally joining other musicians to offer improvisational music for improvisational dancers communities in NYC (Barefoot Boogie; and NYC Contact Jam) and in Poland Spring, ME (Dance New England), whereby musicians and dancers mutually inspire each other's creativity.

Joëlle currently serves as Academic Director at Pratt Institute's Center for Continuing and Professional Studies in Brooklyn, NY. Joëlle practices meditation, chanting, as well as yoga, and occasional chi gong.

In her teaching, Joëlle encourages:
- A sense of being fully present in the moment
- Non-judgmental acceptance
- Playfulness, spontaneity, and wonder
- Connectedness within and around
- Authentic, creative expression
- A sense of community
- A love of supporting one another
- Love and reverence for Nature and for the Source of All Creation.

Joëlle's songs and compositions are soon to become available. Creations often derive from improvisations or dreams. They may include turning poems or sacred text from various spiritual traditions into songs and chants; as well as creating customized songs and chants for individuals at ceremonies such as weddings, birthdays, and memorial services.

Joëlle has created customized CD's of healing guided meditations upon request, especially to help individuals maximize their healing potential prior, during and after surgery. She holds a Master's Degree in Intercultural/International Administration from the School for International Training in Brattleboro, VT. She is the author of the self-published book "Balance from Inside Out: Healing Ourselves, Our Relationships, Communities and the Earth" (1996) as well as related articles published in specialized journals or newsletters (available upon request).

She is available for performances, services, ceremonies, workshops and private sessions. For more information on Joëlle's workshops and services, please contact her at VocalMuse@gmail.com.

Below are comments from past workshop participants -- Excerpted from their evaluation forms:

" [I liked:] Everything! Especially the smallness of the group. Joelle's warm, supportive guidance, the availability of interesting instruments to play. Joelle's apartment is a beautiful, sunny space for a small workshop. ... I really, really enjoyed our experience on Saturday. Thank you so much.

[I wished:] We could have kept improvising, the time flew by and it ended so soon!" Roni

"[I liked:] The intimacy of playing with a small group; your encouraging manner; the organic flow of the day; being reminded how staying with one activity for a long time brings Heaven On Earth!*; your ability to share your vast knowledge in wonderful skill activities; the comfortable setting of your home; everyone present ROCKED!!!" Amala

"The [warm up] exercises were good openings to loosen the muse!" Anonymous

"[The activities] freed me up, helped me find my child inside, allowed me to take risks...,

opened a door... ." Anonymous

"Great Workshop!" Anonymous

*Note from Joëlle on this comment: I usually only stay with a given activity for a while if there is a flow for it :-).

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