Murshid Allaudin Ottinger originates from Kansas City, Missouri. He is an internationally renowned leader of the Dances of Universal Peace and has facilitated camps, seminars and retreats around the world since 1979. As a senior Dance mentor and teacher in the Sufi Ruhaniat International, “His exceptional musicianship, creativity and spontaneity are the seeds of ecstatic experiences of the transformational, healing power of the sacred arts.” As well as being a consummate drummer, Allaudin has brought through many wonderful Dances and brings with him a great quality of heart. We are very fortunate that he is once again visiting the UK, following his last visit in 2016.
Dakini has been leading DUP for over twenty years, and currently serves on the DUP International Board of Directors while mentoring aspiring leaders and bringing the dances to camps, retreats and gatherings throughout Europe. She is also a Sheikha in the Sufi Ruhaniat International and a Buddhist practitioner in the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism.
She has set up numerous dance gatherings, such as the Estonian Dance Camp which she initiated in 2001, the Dervish Days Family Sufi Camp (from 2012) and her yearly Sufi retreat with Pir Shabda and Murshid Saadi, both in Scotland.
She also co-founded a Buddhist retreat centre in Findhorn, Scotland from which she led spiritual journeys to Nepal, India and Tibet.
Her two daughters are also part of the Dances of Universal Peace community and her eldest has led some youth dance sessions. Dakini herself has been heavily involved in bringing the dances to young people across Europe.
Robert first came across the Dances of Universal Peace in 1997, and his involvement in them has grown steadily over the years. As a regular dancer at many events, especially dance camps, he was struck early on by their power to open the heart and connect us. Soon he began drumming for the Dances, and a little later started playing guitar for them. In 2013 he was no longer able to resist the pull to lead Dances, and in 2018 became a certified Dance Leader. With his wife, Jilani, he leads Dances in and around Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire, and has often led at dance camps in England as well as France. As a leader he brings a sense of energy to the Dances, transmitting qualities of joy, gentleness and stillness.
I Sharing the Dances is one of the greatest joys in my life. I lead Dance days and Retreats in the UK and abroad, also combining the Dances with the powerful practice of Heart IQ. I brought the Dances to Newcastle upon Tyne where I live with my partner, Simon. My intention is to open to allow the transmission of the Dances to flow through me so I can hold a loving space for everything else to happen. I am a Dance mentor level 1 and I am delighted to be able to share the love of the Dances with others in this way. I have also enjoyed co-leading a successful 2-year Dance Leader Training programme with Jilani, which we look forward to offering again in 2020-21. I love to help others blossom, young and old, both personally and in their dance leading, and support the spread of the Dances in the world.
I never cease to wonder how deeply people are touched by the Dances, and how glorious it is to witness their coming home to themselves in this way.
I met the Dances in 1997, dancing and playing music for the Dances until eventually I began to lead in around 2005. I was initiated into the Sufi Ruhaniat in 2006, and since then have studied with and received inspiration from my Guides and Teachers, including Muiz, Tansen, Saadi and Pir Shabda. My background and previous training was in classical music, and in various forms of spiritual healing. It was such a revelation to discover that in the Dances I could bring these strands together, weaving them with my experience as a music teacher, and my love of language, into a rich and endlessly satisfying prayer rug. I am passionate about empowering people, including young people, to be more fully themselves, and to realise their potential as dancers, musicians and dance leaders.
In service to this, I am a Mentor for the Dances, and am privileged to work with trainee dance leaders in five countries. I am also excited to be part of the team holding the Youth Dance Camps in the UK.
I have been to every PTA/SAC camp since 1998, and love this chance to live lightly on the earth in a community of open hearts, eating, dancing and praying together.
Su has been a Natural Voice teacher since 2003 and believes that singing together is a natural activity for everyone to take part in and enjoy. Her teaching style is very relaxed and informal and she quickly gets you singing in gorgeous harmony. She is on a mission to share her passion to get everyone singing.
She leads weekly singing groups and community choirs, voice workshops at summer camps and singing holidays around the world, as well as working as a community music event organiser, songwriter and performer, singing and performing with a women’s acapella group for over 20 years. She teaches a variety of songs, from her own compositions to old and new found favourites, ranging in mood from calm and contemplative to high energy numbers with luscious harmonies.
Bruce Knight has been running singing workshops since 2000. He is known for his upbeat and energetic style, and his love of songs with simple dances or movement. Bruce runs the 100-strong Songlines Community Choir in Warwick and Leamington Spa, and is a regular teacher at the Unicorn Natural Voice Camp. In 2003 Bruce travelled to Sierra Leone to learn Mende gospel songs. He enjoys creating his own harmony arrangements for acappella groups, and also leads a weekly circle dance group. Bruce is a member of the Natural Voice Practitioner’s Network.
Kate has been leading choirs and singing workshops since 2001. She also leads singing holidays annually in Morocco and mid Wales and a Scratch World Music Choir at Marlborough College Summer School. She currently has 4 weekly choirs and runs regular 'Wake-Up and Sing' day workshops combining Singing with Feldenkrais, play, movement and awareness. In 2016 Kate completed a 4 year training in The Feldenkrais Method® and this has a huge influence on how she approaches teaching singing. She is always keen to get everyone moving and feeling the music with their whole selves and is known for bringing a lot of fun and laughter to her groups.
Sarah has been leading natural voice workshops since 2001, working with both small and large groups of adults. She is a member of the Natural Voice Practitioners Network, she runs two singing groups in Devon, and she is co-founder (with Gilo) of Big Sing Dorset.
Her intention is always to create a safe space in which everyone can enjoy their voice and mingle it with others, to enable everyone to experience the magic of harmony singing, especially the sense of community that it can bring.
At the Camp she will be leading mostly morning sessions, teaching spiritual chants liable to move the heart to joy or peacefulness. She particularly likes to work with the Harmonic Temple, a body of harmonised chants written by Nickomo using mantras from various spiritual traditions for affirmation and healing – angelic sounds to summon up warmth and wonder.
Habiba has been sharing bhajans since 2005. She has a goodly collection of simple chants mostly in Sanskrit and uses the harmonium to accompany us.
There are word sheets if you need them and the sessions are open to all. No need to consider yourself a ‘good singer’, just come along and sing from your heart and we will enjoy an hour or so of bliss!
Children are most welcome also.
Christina has been a passionate circle dancer and part of the camp scene since the 1980's. She has been leading groups and holding workshops teaching a mixture of dances from the folk dance tradition and modern lyrical and meditative circle dances for more than 25 years. She loves the history innate within dances from the folk tradition as well as the sacred nature of meditative dances. She has been blessed by being part of numerous dancing circles over the years as well as the international circle dance network. She has trained with many choreographers and leaders of the dance, especially from Europe and the Americas, and loves that she has the opportunity to share leading the dance at SAC again this year.
I have been dancing for over 40 years. My most influential teachers were Keith Armstrong and Colin Harrison both of whom learnt directly from Bernard Vosien at Findhorn. I lead a monthly Circle Dance in Frome where we are blessed to have live music and singing led by Nickomo, Rasullah and Jo Hanstead. I lead the Glastonbury group on occasions and prefer traditional dances. For me the dance is a truly joyful, uplifting and Sacred experience, and I am delighted to be sharing the teaching at this camp with my good friend and mentor Christina, one of my favourite dancers.
Ryan Davis (Hafiz) became interested in meditation during the late 90s. After a period of travel and trying different kinds of work, he began his first formal mindfulness training while living within a monastic community in South-East Asia, returning to England to resume his counselling training in 2003-2007. From 2006-2014, Ryan worked with secure psychiatric services and within schools as a therapist. Struggling with the stresses and demands of working within those environments, he began practicing with greater frequency. His dear friend Daren Messenger introduced him to western secular mindfulness approaches: Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction & Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy. Ryan interned with Daren Messenger and trained at Bangor University.
Ty Lynne was first introduced to yoga by lovely Elizabeth while living in the Thai jungle in 1990s and has completed teacher trainings with Sivananda Yoga UK and Devon School of Yoga. She is inspired by the vastness of the yoga path, from the physical practices that take such wonderful nourishing care of the body to the rich philosophies and teachings that underpin it all. As well as Ty's ongoing journey with yoga, she is also inspired by the Dances, the philosophy of Advaita Vedanta and Buddhism. She lives on Dartmoor with her family and teaches nearby. Ty is so happy to be sharing yoga at camp.
"The camp leaders and loyal campers are amazing people, they run the camp like the most nurturing home with open arms to newcomers like me. Many people came and
chatted or just smiled to me over the course of the week and by the end
of it I felt we had become part of an amazing family." - Emma