When I finally finished the editing on THE COOLEST MEDITATION EVER: ANTARCTICA 12.12.12 in late 2016 I thought the movie, Running Time 64 minutes, was going to only look good on the internet.
But when we sold out the Sedona Film Festival’s Mary Fisher theater with 20 people turned away at the door, and the FILM LOOKED AMAZING on the big screen and our audience loved doing a live planetary meditation after, well, I knew we were onto something bigger than Vimeo and Amazon, where the movie can be viewed or bought.
We had invented a new movie going experience I like to call a MOVIE AND A MEDITATION with our Antarctica film being the first of many such nights. As you can see here when the lights came up, people were treated to a Q&A and shared consciousness to send healing love to my mermaid Elizabeth’s first love, the oceans.
From 2010 to 2012 I did many live events with crowds of 100 plus in Los Angeles. 12.12.16, exactly 4 years from my stepping foot on the giant continent of Antarctica, here I was doing a Movie and a Meditation in my new home Sedona with the love of my life and surrounded my some of Sedona’s and LA’s best healers. The applause was like water in the desert of our 6 years in total filmmaking journey.
Buoyed by the Sedona success, after a few months of getting happily sidetracked with work on an exciting new screenplay about the incredible life of scientist, author and inventor Patrick Flanagan, and following a detour to cover the Heyoka president we are all being entertained and stretched by for now, my partner in love and life, Elizabeth and I began touring the film through May to across the Southwest. Here’s some highlights!
BEFORE HITTING THE ROAD…
We landed a superb pet sitter for our 1 year-old rescue dog Lincoln. That done we set out in our Jeep, loaded with DVDs and cool perks which funded this entire trip and all our computer gear to be able to service our clients while on the move. First stop…
The Enchanted Forest Reiki Center in Las Vegas generated a small turnout, but the mini-crowd loved the film. Best of all the film’s humor brought a laugh to woman who was recovering from the recent loss of a dear husband. Quite the come down in scale from the sold-out Sedona film fest, but we’d learn on the road in Santa Fe that the amazing Amma’s first events were small as well.
Next it was onto the OC for a screening at The Temple of Light.
Unfortunately, I suffered food poisoning I picked up in Vegas taking my grieving 88-year-old mom to a fine Mexican restaurant. Yep. It was a lo-o-ong drive to LA, sparing you, dear reader, the gory details.
But I was too busy worrying for my mother, broken-hearted about her husband and great stepfather of 30 years and lost in coma after stroke, to feel sorry for myself. I was relieved to hear my baby brother was coming into Vegas to care for mom soon. I had spent 3 weeks caring for my it was his turn to be on watch. We’d been tag teaming since the early part of 2017.
Unfortunately, as a result of my being sick and checking on mom daily Elizabeth and I were unable to market much for the OC. We’d hope my and ELizabeth LA fan base would make the 90 minute trek south to the OC but not too many did. Still, amazing people showed up like Bahkti star Larisa Stowe.
Donna, who we toured Egypt with last year, and Deanna Cook, who hosted us for a few days and we in turn hosted in Sedona. We looked on the intimate size as chance to keep perfecting our Movie and a Meditation format.
I discovered on the trip that I have developed terrible cat allergies because the people we were staying with had not one but two cats. Despite a sneezing attack mi screening, the event was magical. The Antarctica movie gets people relaxed and ready for the planetary meditation that follows.
Next up the EarthShift conference in Desert Hot Springs. The poster makers for the event could not fit the information about our event within the evnt, so we made our own poster.
At first I was taken aback seeing we’d be screening in the middle of a noisy vendor bazar that surround the theater seating area but the tech running the show did a great job of quieting the crowd.
Big applause from a gathering for our Saturday matinee. A great Q&A. We were honored to have the event creator himself Julian Forest accompany Elizabeth for the guided meditation.
After our matinee, Elizabeth found us a great spa that turned out to be a huge health boost for my ongoing battle with black mold poisoning I suffered in 2013/2014. And we stayed at the home of the amazing Joan of Angels, surrounded day and night by her prolific visionary ET inspired angel art.
Next, it was back to base in Sedona. Our rescue dog Lincoln greeted us with such joy on our homecoming. The little fella had proved quite a handful for our talented and loving pet sitter. Lincoln had the best in care while we were on the tour, including two pet shrinks our sitter brought aboard in our absence. We saw great progress in his journey relaxing into his happy new life. But our little rescue dog was so sad our pet sitter told us while we were away that it was clear to us Lincoln would be happier coming with us on the next city, Santa Fe.
Since 2011 Elizabeth has spent her birthday at the amazing Amma’s event. So with Santa Fe the screening marketing work was integrated with attending the Amma event. We rented a beautiful casita new where the film was screening. Lincoln loved staying there and near us while we attended the Amma events in short bursts.
Sadly I learned, while we waited for our Amma hugs, on June 13th that my stepfather, great guy who took such sweet care of my mom for 30 years, had passed in Vegas. After nearly 3 months in a coma, the Navy vet had given up the battle. Fortunately, my brother was already in Vegas caring for our mom. The poor thing had exhausted herself and broken her hip while we were on the road. And for the few days while she was down, Nick got lost in our insane hospital system. I tracked him down by calling all the major hospitals.
My brother really came to the rescue while Elizabeth and I were stuck on the road. My mom has accepted my brother’s invite, over our invite to come to Sedona, preferring to return to her native home state of Wisconsin. She’s doing great and not following her husband as often happens. People in my family live to over 100 and I think she’s going to be another.
Grieving, caring for my own and family illness while promoting was not easy on me. Luckily Elizabeth was all over it. We were looking forward to filling the 150 seat theater we rented in Santa Fe for after the Amma event.
But we made a miscalculation in selecting the Screen. Santa Fe is small by LA standards, and to we former Los Angelinos driving ten minutes to the theater from the downtown seemed no biggie. We were wrong. Net result a small turnout again.
People spaced themselves out in the 150 seats and so the audience energy was dispersed with few laughs or giggles of delight we are used to getting them. Two people even walked out mid-film. Yikes. But the core audience who stayed after were amazing. The of them Sidhi yogas like Elizabeth.
On the plus side, and the theme of this trip, it became an intimate gathering where we could hug every movie attendee Amma style. Once again a quality not quantity crowd. Here’s a snap of the 40 foot screen the movie was shown on. Again blown away by how good the movie looks and sounds on the big screen.
The lesson in all this? People are not ready to pay $24 for a movie and meditation. We are going back to the $12 price we sold out in Sedona with. And we learned tours are hard work to manage and market with our two person operation. Especially harder on the road with everything else that’s going on. So we’ll promote Boulder from our Sedona base where we and Lincoln have happily retuned,
Next up for the MOVIE AND A MEDIATION tour: Boulder Colorado August 1st. A 200 seat theater. Can we sell it out like Sedona? You bet. Our confidence is bolstered by the fact we have added two exciting guest co-hosts, famed sonic healing artists Jonathan Goldman and Andi Goldman.