Friday, December 21, 2007

Gnostic Christmass Revue Tonight at Noe Valley Ministry

Dear Friends,

Happy Winter Solstice! Please scroll down to see a list of upcoming farming/music/movement-related events plus an update on the Farm Bill.

Be well,

PS – Not sure what to give friends and family for the holidays? You can give a gift to the environment in their honor at

Event Summary:

*12/21 TONIGHT Gnostic Holiday Showcase w/ Wymond & his Spirit Children, Family Trea, Conspiracy of Beards, Conspiracy of Venus, & Joseph Childress, 6:30pm doors, Noe Valley Ministry, $6-$10

*12/22 Saturday Alemany Farm Workday 12-5pm Free

*12/22 Saturday Mission Greenbelt Sound-Scape Tour 1:00pm Free
*1/5 Saturday & 1/6 Sunday Axis Syllabus Dance Workshop in SF, "Vertebration" w/ Kira, 11am-3:30pm fee info below

*1/5 Saturday WomenRock Benefit for GirlsRock Summer Camp w/ bernadette, Making Dinner, & Valerie Orth Band at Bottom of the Hill $5-$20

*2/1 Saturday & 2/2 Sunday Axis Syllabus Dance Workshop in SF, "Secret Agents" w/ Kira Kirsch & "Time Curves" w/ Frey Faust, 11am-4:30pm, fee info below

PLUS (after event list details)

*Farm Bill Update from Organic Farming Resarch Foundation

Event Details:

*12/21 Friday (Winter Solstice!)

The Spirit Family Gnostic Holiday Showcase w/ Wymond & his Spirit Children, Family Trea, Conspiracy of Beards, Conspiracy of Venus, & Joseph Childress 6:30pm doors $6-$10

Come receive your Holy Sophic Communion from the Spirit Family. Protective crystals needn't be brought, all vibrations shall be warming, cathartic, and healing.

Friday December 21st @ 7pm!!!

Wymond & his Spirit Children:
Family Trea:
Conspiracy of Beards:
Conspiracy of Venus: or
Joseph Childress:

Noe Valley Ministry:
1021 Sanchez St.
San Francisco CA 94114

Cover is $6 - $10 sliding scale
Door opens early at 6:30, show begins at 7:00pm!
Wine & Beer available by donation.

The thundering melodies and feverish dreams of Wymond and his Spirit Children will join with the lush acoustic nature hymns of Family Trea along with other very special guests for an intimate candlelit performance at the 110 year old Noe Valley Ministry in San Francisco.

Through the diverse and unique voices of the artists, the evening promises a quiet release from our day to day consumer driven lives to offer a moment of rumination upon the inner solace each winter solstice brings. Sip a glass of warm mulled wine and let yourself be serenaded by the sweeping voices of the Conspiracy of Beards - a men's choir singing the songs of Leonard Cohen, and young folk troubadour Joseph Childress. The enchanting women's choir Conspiracy of Venus (singing songs from Leonard Cohen to Joni Mitchell) will also make a special appearance on this night not to be missed. More about the performers below:


Led by the deep, throaty voice of Wymond Miles (Rykarda Parasol, Skygreen Leopards) the Spirit Children are a dense 7 member ensemble (several of whom live together communally in San Francisco) interweaving delicate compositions with shamanic trance-invoking power. A few vague threads of musical contemporaries come to mind, the tonality of Wovenhand or 6 Organs of Admittance, the voice recalls Nick Cave with the savoir faire of Bowie/Scott Walker. The urgent communal singing resemble the youthful Arcade Fire but are more related to Hindu spiritual chants than modern pop. In less than one year together they've self-released 3 limited edition EP's, and played a handful of shows in S.F. and Big Sur with acts such as Akron/Family, Daevid Allen, Entrance, Wooden Shjips, and Faun Fables. They won't stay your secret gnostic-mystery group for long.

Colorado via San Francisco singer-songwriter Joseph Childress writes intimate music that can render a noisy venue silent. His music draws inspiration from the mountains in which he grew up, the ranch on which he worked, his friends, family, and loves. Compared to Bob Dylan, Devendra Banhart, and many his peers in the current folk music movement, his voice carries stories of travels over guitar playing that ranges from sweet finger picking to furious strumming. He has played shows across the western United States with numerous acts including Devendra Banhart, Joanna Newsom, Vetiver, Wooden Shjips, Becky Stark, Entrance, Diane Cluck, The Winter Flowers, Kind Of Like Spitting, the Moore Brothers, Sean Smith,Thanksgiving, Mount Eerie, and many more… He has toured with lovely acts including the Love Letter Band, Mariee Sioux, Messes, St. Ivy (of Mountain Home), and Trapeze and Carrots. To date, Joseph's music can be heard live, on one of his recently released split 7" records, or on his widely circulated 10-track self-release.

The Conspiracy of Beards, based in San Francisco CA, are a 30 member male choir performing exclusively the songs of Leonard Cohen. Inspired by late artist Peter Kadyk and directed by Daryl Henline, the group performs gritty, uplifting renditions of Cohen's songs. Started in June 2003 by Henline and Patrick Kadyk the group has performed to enthusiastic audiences around the Bay Area including most recently, appearances at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Cafe Du Nord and on the national radio program, West Coast Live. Upcoming projects include a CD release and a US tour.

Conspiracy of Venus is a community women's choir dedicated to exploring the technique and art of singing in works by contemporary songwriters, from Hildegard to Bjork. Formed in early 2007, the group is an offshoot of The Conspiracy of Beards mens choir. We are directed by Joyce Todd McBride.

San Francisco's Family Trea (pronounced "tree") is a collaborative
music project between several California musicians. Formerly
Bowerbird, Family Trea features members of Wymond and his Spirit
Children, Sea Wolf, Chinatown Bakeries, Jean Marie, Messes, and
Randazzo Robinson, and will be joined on the 21st by Will Waghorn of (Sean Hayes band) on drums. Influenced by the natural world and human relationships, Family trea's songs layer ethereal vocals, cello, and dobro over a foundation of drums and intricate finger-style guitar. Their music is reminiscent of late 60's - early 70's folk (Nick Drake, Pentangle, Vashti Bunyan, Sibylle Baier) and evokes comparisons to contemporaries such as Espers, Six Organs of Admittance, and the Cocteau Twins. Rare to the stage, they have shared performances with artists as diverse as Mammatus, Aaron Ross, Bobby Birdman, and Nat Russell (Birds of America). Currently, Family Trea is working on a full length album at Wymond Miles's Garden Chamber analog recording studio that will feature an all star cast of guest performances including Otto Hauser (Vetiver, Espers, Devendra Banhart, Bert Jansch) on drums.

*12/22 Saturday

Alemany Farm Workday 12-5pm Free

Join us at the Alemany Farm for our volunteer work day this Saturday, from 12:00pm to 5:00pm. All skill levels welcome to do as much or as little for any portion or the entirety of the day. We will be distributing harvested food at about 4:30pm. Hope to see you there!

Map, directions, and details at

Questions? Email

*12/22 Saturday

Mission Greenbelt Sound-Scape Tour 1:00pm

Meet in Dolores Park (at 19th & Dolores)

Walk the route of the proposed Mission Greenbelt with artists Jeremy Dalmas and Amber Hasselbring. Installed at headquarters are three field recordings made during walks at sunrise, mid-day and sunset. During this tour we will participate in exercises that help us to hone our auditory sense to discover sounds we may have never heard before. This exercise will also help us to imagine what new sounds we'll hear once the Greenbelt is built. This tour is free. Donations accepted. *We'll go on this tour rain or shine, so bring appropriate weather gear. Email with any questions.

*1/5 Saturday & 1/6 Sunday

"Vertebration" Axis Syllabus Dance Workshop w/ Kira in SF 11am-3:30pm

in San Francisco
@1345 A 17th Street (@Connecticut), SF Muni Bus 22

WORKSHOP I January 5th & 6th 11am – 3.30pm
w. Kira Kirsch
VERTEBRATION - a deeper look into spinal mechanics
Discover the spine as a major motor for locomotion. Find your curves and individual neutral alignment. Practice coordination of three-axial movements, side-bending, undulations and oscillations. Experience efficient shock absorption and proximal magic which are keys towards fluidity, precision and ease.

More details below.

*1/5 Saturday

WomenRock Benefit for GirlsRock Summer Camp w/ bernadette, Making Dinner, & Valerie Orth Band at Bottom of the Hill $5-$20


- 1233 17th St, San Francisco


9PM - Making Dinner (
9:30PM - Valerie Orth Band (
11PM - bernadette ( )

Doors open at 8PM.

: $5-$20 sliding scale. Buy tickets now at

put on by local women's music collective, WomenROCK (which Abigail and I are part of). We'll be raising money for summer classes at Blue Bear School of Music that teaches girls musicianship, performance skills and team-building. More details on my latest blog at
And, by the way, if you're looking to do some sweatshop-free shopping these days of over-consumption, check out

*2/1 Saturday & 2/2 Sunday

"Secret Agents" w/ Kira Kirsch & "Time Curves" w/ Frey Faust, Axis Syllabus Dance Workshop in SF, 11am-4:30pm

WORKHOP II February 1st & 2nd 11 – 4.30 pm
w. Kira Kirsch & Frey Faust

SECRET AGENTS - extremity assistance & navigation f. floor work (taught by Kira)
Study supportive angles for shoulder and hip joints as well as healthy motion pathways for arms & legs. Learn to generate and use centrifugal force to help you hover in, above and out of the floor. The proximal driven use of your periphery amplifies axial movements, permits you to expands into space and leaves the adventurous taste of flight.

TIME CURVES - rhythm for coordination (taught by Frey)
The length of our limbs and their mass provide us with intrinsic inertial values to use as guidelines for musicality. Practice keeping time without losing yourself. This class focuses on optimal choices for the use of time, while dancing; specifically the utility of curved ramps that accelerate at the third quarter.

pre-reg fees: jan WS I $65 / feb WS II $85 / both WS I+II $130
after jan 1st WS I $75 / after jan 28th WS II $ 95 415-724-6778
checks payable to Kira Kirsch 669 24th st. unit B, oakland, ca-94612
cancellation policies & info at:
lack of funds? please don't hesitate and call or write me!

click here for demo video of the axis syllabus and slide show or copy & paste this link

The Axis Syllabus is a method of teaching people how to move safely. It uses basic physics, applied anatomy and a spiraling, circular vocabulary that proposes smart use of built-in landing pads in the body, harnessing your own mass and momentum to get into and out of the floor and air. The Axis Syllabus heals by helping you harmonize your movements with universal physical principles and your own skeletal architecture. It reduces stress on the joints and organs by offering logical transitions for the transfer of weight through muscles and bones, helping to locate and restructure harmful habits. These principles are for everyone, from the office-worker to the break-dance.


*Farm Bill Update from the Organic Farming Research Foundation ( ):

On December 14th, the Senate passed the 2007 Farm Bill by a vote of 79-14. The organic provisions of the bill remain largely intact and many of them are closely aligned with our goals. However, the Dorgan-Grassley Payment Limitations Amendment failed by a vote of 56-43 – it needed a super-majority of 60 votes in order to pass. You can read more details on this procedural move at the Environmental Working Group's Blog. (

Thanks to all of you who contacted your Senators. Though the amendment failed, the close vote sent a strong message to Congress that people want change, and this will help to build more momentum for future efforts to pass agriculture policies that are fair and equitable. Moreover, the organic provisions in the bill so far, if passed, will be a tremendous boon to organic family farmers throughout the country.

To find out how your Senator voted, read the full Senate vote count for the Dorgan-Grassley Amendment. ( Please take a moment to contact your Senators and express your thanks or disappointment on their votes.

No comments: