Below are a few chosen reflections from friends along the way.
Hopefully, these words will invite connection, and welcome you;
as we build bridges of understanding from those who have had
direct experience within our school's New World Design Ceremonies™.

Tao Oe Mamatu (Years to remember)

"For any of the other linear, engineer/rocket scientist, under-control, Virgo types out there looking to connect with your creative energy..."

"From the day Sahn Kai first had me dancing and singing in the rain, until my recent, sweat lodge adventure, she has deeply inspired me with the unique magic, love and compassion she brings to her work and interactions with people."

- Robert K. Booth
Principal and Managing Director
Booth & Assoicates International

"Life...the Dance of the Great Mother leading the Child into the ways of play, passion, joy, pain, suffering, compassion and love. Sahn's work is where, metaphorically, the rubber meets the road."

"If one is willing to dive in, every cell is called to be alive in the brilliance, the luminosity of this whirling dance of life. Here we discover the dancing mystery; mirroring the timeless essence of the indescribable oneness."

- Phyllis Matyi

“No words can do justice to what I have experienced within this new family. This family that we bring together with dance, humor, sound, love. 'magic'....When I think about the past month and the months to come, that word is 'Magic'.”

- Lisa O'Callihan
Graphic Designer

“Dear Ancient/Modern Dance Company,
This is to express my gratitude to you and the rest of the Company for, once again, touching me so deeply and moving me so passionately. All of you are truly gifted to the soul.”

- Paul

“Regarding ‘Men Dancing The Earth’™...answering the ancestors gift, gathering river stones in the night, men dancing the beauty. Old Men awakening spirit, guiding the children. Middle-passage men moving towards the elder; with the song leading the dance of the ages, returning to the ancestors.”

- John Veltri

"My most apparent memories of SMI are feelings--the experience of the elements: earth, wind, fire mud, rain, tropics... “

- Dr. Susan Lyon, PhD.
San Francisco, California

“We are an infinitely dynamic collaboration of everyday people growing deeper into the true essence of our hearts beauty. Through the sacred ways of this lodge, each artist is free to explore all that their soul dreams to become. Something magic emerges as the artist comes forth to shine and express their full capacity as a human."

"In this way, we become greater than the isolation of our individual self and our life story. We emerge as a deeper collective expression of truth as we witness and honor each person's heart song. We become that which we have always known in our deepest heart of hearts. We become our joy and our freedom in everything that we do.”

- Tyler Nilson

"Sahn and The SMI, International/IIA community have a remarkable ability to synthesize elements from various traditions into a vibrant living whole. This group embodies the teachings rather than explain them; and Sahn Kai, she brings a warm, inclusive, tribal feeling to all aspects of ceremony."

- Lane Taigent
Ropes Course/Wilderness Skills
Westerbeke Ranch, Sonoma, CA

"It's so simple, really. Sound and Movement are vital forces that move within and around us at all times. The practice around the work of SMI, for me, is about having permission to feel and interpret my life through dance and song. More specifically, the availability of sounding postures/exercises, such as 'circular breathing' and 'dancing the wheel,' which have helped me traverse emotional, physical and spiritual challenges in my life. The practical applications are numerous, an example is sounding in the car to release stress after a difficult night at work or sweet soothing tones vibrated by my husband against my pregnant belly to communicate love to our baby in utero. I was exposed to SMI when I was just a child and believe that the work can serve us as we move through the ever changing dimensions of our life span."

- Rachel Kofron
Ob/gyn RN
Portland, Oregon

"SMI, International/IIA has been an incredible grounding force for the creative spirit, a second family, a place where i can go home inside myself without second guessing my self. These curriculum's have been a place to find acceptance of our selves; regardless of where we have been, to love ourselves regardless of what we look like, to use the dance to go deep into ceremony. To be creative and alive and full in the presence of all of us; alone/together within an entire creative community."

"Our Beautiful dance is a way of expressing our souls as human beings, a way of touching human kindness within our hearts. I have come here to grow inside myself, to find the edges of my skin, of my belly, to find my dancing feet, my joyful heart, to lift the suffering, in an easeful way to bring my worlds together, not just for myself but for my family."

"This work is a sacred space to dance like the ancients danced in our own modern way. A space to move our bodies, to sweat, to let go, to release, to empower ourselves with beauty. I refer to the beauty we find within ourselves, that is a reflection of our souls, an actual place to come home to in a beautiful way. An actual student/teacher environment without critical judgement to motivate pushing the envelopes of ourselves."

"Perhaps we will come up to our own resistance and see ourselves, if we are wise enough observers within this dancing/singing Lodge, we may discover self analysis. This classroom on the Mountain top, tropical jungle, or in the dance studio, is an opportunity to see the ways we interact with people through our own thought process. Where do we place ourselves within a group? How do we hide or be visible? When do we hold ourselves back? This ceremonial program may bring insights as to our intentions and how we navigate in the worlds. The experience can inspire change in our lives; as we choose to see ourselves through the eyes of the dancing/singing healer we embody."

- Josafina Garcia

"Imagine that you can change the world with the gesture of your hand or with the sound of your quivering voice. Over the past seven years, within SMI/IIA, I have come to know this to be true. I have traveled the landscape of my soul and know that magik exists in every moment."

- Akasha SilverHawk
Ontario, Canada

“As light passing through a prism becomes visible to the naked eye in it’s various rays or colours-so Sahn, by the magic of her song , her dance, breaks through the ordinary boundaries of human perception-and transports her audience in an enlarged empheryal vision. Diving deep within her soul-in some inexplicable way uniquely her own-Sahn is able to communicate the qualities of the human spirit... Joy...Adventure...A sense of spiritual form and freedom...The depth of womanhood...Life’s vast and unlimited potential. To see Sahn dance is a soul-moving experience, always enlightening, always enjoyable.”

- J. Paul Jourdan
Winner of over 40 National Art and Journalism Awards


Michael Ventura White Tiger Article(1981):

“Dancer, Healer , Singer-one of the problems of writing about Sahn is that we’re faced with something for which there is no Western tradition. The word ‘artist’ isn't applicable. It is included in what Sahn does, but Sahn’s path is wider and is rooted in a time when there were no artists. Think of her mother’s people, the Navajo. Singing, dancing and what we would call painting and sculpture are partaken of by everyone and are part of what the Navajo call “walking in beauty”. To be a healer with the Navajo, you must know how to lead the songs and dances-and to be fully part of the tribe, you must know how to participate in the songs and dances. There is no such thing as ‘audience’. And without the concept of “audience” there is no such thank as “artist.”

- Michael Ventura
Writer-Critic L.A. Weekly

"The experiences offered to me through SMI have had a profound impact on my life. I continue to grow not only in reverence, trust and spontaneity from the trials set before me, but I have gained a whole community in SMI -the value of which cannot be overstated. The relationships forged around Sahn's fire are rooted in a radical love that makes every gathering an epic celebration and the mere thought of each other on an ordinary day, a breathtaking release of the heart."

- Craig Caddell
Vice President of Operations, Inc.

"Through the beauty of two women, with two hearts beating, with the mother drum, a 'YES' resonated: "it must be now, the dance of Ancient Modern". As assistant director from 1990-1995, I write these thoughts:

Late night rehearsals, searching for the bridge between the technique and the essence of the dance. SMI, International(IIA) was included as the Independent study for my Undergraduate Curriculum at San Francisco State in my studies of Speech and Communications."

I had the opportunity to bridge my academic world and my journey with sound and spirit into perfect balance. I apprenticed, assisted, directed the performance company, consulted with the Sound/ Movement Integration Center, became family, created community, (1989 until present time).

A space to be held,to witness in love and be seen through the eyes of the ancient ones. How do I describe my experience? A sweetness? A purity? You call for the best in everyone: a resonance, a call to the soul's design.

The blue print? How do I quote my experience of so many years? "Sound opening my crown, remembering my tools, voice changing, rearranging herself, deep into the soul of my body/spirit home. Sounding over and over, early morning sessions, sounding postures, over and over: the discipline, the exercises,the family".

- Teya Chavez-Krokty
Therapist/Director R.O.B.A.
Peru/Marin, Cailfornia

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