The Khaita Dance School has recently organised a three-year training program to prepare new Khaita instructors and experts. The aim of the program is to create an important ‘bridge’ through Khaita that will help us to bring the values and the message of Chögyal Namkhai Norbu outside the Dzogchen Community. Khaita is a very effective way to do this. The training program aims to give participants some basic tools so that they can bring Khaita not only to the general public but also potentially into places such as schools as well as into residential homes for the elderly and the disabled. Dance is a fantastic tool to keep people moving and feeling young and it can also be therapeutic. At the moment, there are not many instructors, so the first step in the program is to increase the number of experts.
The training program will last for three years, with three courses per year, each lasting a week, each at a different time and place. Basically the training will cover three areas: one part will be to develop awareness through movement and sound, while a second area is the learning process, learning how to become an instructor but also how to organise and prepare shows, and how to create projects, present ourselves, and propose activities. The third area will be about culture.
The program plans to develop more experts and instructors, so in addition to the three weekly courses, there will be workshops on some specific topics. For example, in the coming year the Khaita Dance School is organising a workshop on voice that will be led by Giovanna Natalini at Merigar West in June. This workshop will be about singing together, and how to sing while dancing. The workshops will be open to everybody interested, not only those who are following the training. Later there will be another workshop about communication and public speaking, then others on topics such as how to write a project, how to prepare a business plan, and so on. There will also be a university professor who teaches methodology of dance research running some workshops. Of course in a single weekend it is not possible to learn everything but participants can at least have a base from which to develop.
The first year of the Educational Program will be more dedicated to learning the base of the dances, how the material for Khaita is structured, where to find it, and acquiring basic knowledge of the dances. At the end of the first year training, participants will be able to lead Khaita in an informal way.
The second and third years will be dedicated to how to teach, how to organize events, and put together programs. At the end of the third year, those who would like to become instructors will take an exam and undergo supervision with the Khaita Committee and if they pass will receive a Khaita instructor certificate. In order to do the exam, one should have participated in all three weeks training every year.
The training program for 2020 has already planned three weeks of courses. The first will be at Dzamling Gar, Tenerife, in March. March 10-11 will be two days of Drajyor because if someone wants to become an instructor, they should study Drajyor. The first course of the training will take place March 12-18.
The second week of training in 2020 will be at Merigar West, Italy, June 12-19.
The third week is at Phendenling, Czech Republic, October 24-31.
The project is in collaboration with the Atiyoga Foundation.