From OVWS parent Lydia Russell: On a chilly and gray November day, a group of parents gathered in the yurt at Orchard Valley to experience the expressive art of Eurythmy. Eurythmy is often presented as a performance art, but also has educational and therapeutic applications. Chloe McKenna, a student of Eurythmy who is currently doing her practicum at Orchard Valley, guided us in a series of warming and enlivening movements and gestures that gave us a small taste of this elegant and intricate form. In her long flowing gown, Chloe led us in simple, yet powerful, movements which invited us to inhabit the space around, between, and within us in an intentional and conscious way. As we moved in harmony as a group, a calming and contemplative energy permeated the room and I could sense the healing and connective potential of such a practice.
Chloe explained that Eurythmy offers a gesture for each vowel and consonant in human language, and led us through several examples. She then asked for the names of some of our children and together we made the gestures that correspond with the sounds of their names. This was a particularly powerful moment as we experienced the felt sense of each child through the full-body movements of their names. I was moved almost to tears as I felt the energy of my daughter's presence so fully expressed in a few short movements.
We also had the opportunity to work with copper rods, an exercise which took great concentration and awareness of self and other. I could see how empowering and strengthening this work would be for children!
For me, the whole experience of moving together as a group in such a mindful and embodied way was a joyful and nourishing one. I felt grateful to get a flavor of the beautiful work Chloe is bringing into our children's classrooms. It is a wonderful gift to have her visit our school and share these teachings. Thank you, Chloe!