Portland News Magazine

Melayna & Marc of Brooklyn Bay Have A New Show! Finally…

December 10th, 2012 by Lesa Ricci

Things always take so much longer than I expect.

 Marc and I started working on a new show about relationships at least two years ago, maybe three. We started thinking we’d do a show based on an article called ‘Anatomy of a Bad Mood’ by Robert Sapolsky. It was a funny article, kind of a gender dynamics thing he wrote for a men’s magazine. But when we started working on it, it fell flat. It just wasn’t right. We had to let it go…

We tried again a few more times from different angles but it always felt forced. We were trying too hard. Again and again we had to let it go…
We wanted to create a performance that would offer something truly valuable. A piece that would not just satirize relationships but really offer understanding and a way to transform difficulties. 

And we were creating this piece about relationship together…and all our difficulties have come up.

And much has been transformed between us – and continues to in surprising and mysterious ways.

For the past three or more years, we’ve been studying experiencially the neurobiology of relationships using our own relationship as fertile ground for discovery. And now we’ve created a piece about it. 


But I have to say, I believe it is worth the wait. 

One thing I’ve come to appreciate about this project, is that you can’t rush a process like this. When a project really has integrity and something valuable is emerging, it takes the time it takes. And rushing it just creates frustration. When this piece was ready to come, it came in a big rush – seemingly out of nowhere.

I’m telling you all this not only to invite you to come experience this new performance piece yourself (See below for details). But I also wanted to share a bit about our process in case it’s helpful.

 Maybe you have a project, or an intention that seems to be taking too long. Maybe you are coming up against blocks and needing to let things go again and again. Don’t lose heart. And if you do lose heart, be kind to yourself. These things take time.

Warmly, Melanya


The Eternally Present Past

How Implicit Memory Shapes Us

Have you ever wondered why you feel the way you do? Or why you keep falling into the same patterns of relationships again and again?

You are invited on a journey to explore our inner landscape. Below our conscious awareness, bodily sensations, surges of feeling, behavioral impulses and perceptual biases continuously influence our relationships.

This transformative performance piece inquires into the neurobiology of relationship through story, poetry, movement and sound.

January 11 & 12


The Brooklyn Bay

$20 / ticket

Tickets Available Now


Jay Stewart shows work in “Little Things 12” show

December 10th, 2012 by Lesa Ricci
Please consider visiting the “Little Things 12” show at Guardino Gallery, 2939 NE Alberta.  This annual show makes it affordable to give original art as a gift to someone special or for your own home.
I am fortunate to be one of the many artists in this show of small, modestly priced art.   My work is a series of small paintings entitled “Maple Seeds Illuminated.”    I hope you’ll have a chance to see them.
Thank you.
L. Jay Stewart

Nov. 3-4 Portland Shambhala Meditation Marathon Fundraiser Needs Your Pledges!

October 21st, 2012 by Lesa Ricci

Proceeds will support our core offerings and other initiatives that make the benefits of meditation accessible to more people including the PSC prison dharma program at Oregon State Penitentiary, retreat scholarships, the program tuition generosity policy and ecumenical community events such as the Portland City Sit.

How It Will Work:

From 9am Saturday, November 3rd until 9am Sunday, November 4th, we’ll be sitting at the Shambhala Center for 30 min. sessions of mindfulness meditation, interspersed with 10 minutes of walking meditation. Although the event has been designed to allow meditators to “lean in” if they choose to, there is no minimum amount of sitting time required. We will be maintaining functional silence throughout the marathon. Food will be provided for meditators every 3-4 hours.

How You Can Help:

1) Participate as a Meditator/Fundraiser: We are looking for 10 – 15 meditators/ fundraisers!

Before Nov. 3rd, you’ll reach out to sangha members, friends and family for pledges, then be responsible for collecting your raised funds by Nov. 18th. While we encourage fundraisers to target $100 – $500 in pledges, the minimum amount of fundraising required to participate as a meditator is $50. You’ll be increasing public awareness of the benefits of meditation, long term, through supporting the Portland Shambhala Center and immediately, through conversations with sponsors. Register on-line at www. portland.shambhala.org

2) At This Point What We Need Are Sponsors — Make a Pledge To Donate: Please consider sponsoring someone’s sit, at any level! 

Pledges may be made by the hour or as a flat amount. You may be asked to pledge by multiple people, so don’t be shy to say “no” if you’ve already done so. And just in case you’re not asked, we’d appreciate your proactive support for this community fundraising effort: Contact one of the Meditators listed on the bulletin board at the Center, and let them know you’d like to pledge to support their Marathon. 

3) Join Us During the Marathon: We are looking for people to make/serve tea and snacks during the Meditation Marathon, and/ or to take a turn as Umdze!

Visit/serve/clean-up one meal, or join us for multiple meal periods. Your services and the energy you bring will be deeply appreciated. And you may get to see Marathon Meditators actually falling over!

To help or ask questions, contact Kim Crossman at 503-477-9442

The Books of Esther by Willa Schneburg

September 17th, 2012 by Lesa Ricci

An Interdisciplinary Exhibit of the Life of One Woman Who “Talked” Through Writing 

September 12, 2012 – November 25, 2012

Oregon Jewish Museum

1953 NW Kearney Street, Portland

Website: ojm.org

Willa Schneberg’s mother, a first generation American, was a survivor of larynx cancer. Thus out of necessity she wrote what she would normally speak. In this body of work Schneberg utilizes ceramic sculpture, photographs, audio clips and personal objects to explore how memory, language, Jewish identity, work, disability and aging, shape people’s lives. Schneberg has created the echo of the voice no longer there, the contour of the hand that held the pen. This exhibit is about the artifacts of our lives, and how we infuse them with meaning. The Books of Esther also embodies the essential contribution of written language, and it demonstrates how one woman’s need to communicate allowed her to overcome adversity.

Sadhana of Mahamudra Abhisheka will be offered by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche

February 20th, 2012 by

We are delighted to announce that Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche will bestow the Sadhana of Mahamudra Abhisheka at Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Scotia on April 1, 2012.

This ceremony is a special occasion for practitioners to receive the blessing empowerment of this sadhana as part of the commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the parinirvana of the Druk Sakyong, The Vidyadhara, Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche.

In 1968, during a retreat at Taktsang Senge-ge Samdrup in Bhutan, the Vidyadhara made a profound connection with Padmasambhava and received as terma the Sadhana of Mahamudra. This sadhana addresses the problems of the current dark age and how to overcome its obstacles.

His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche requested the Vidyadhara to write the abhisheka and feast for this sadhana. Unfortunately, the Vidyadhara was never able to do so. After the parinirvana of Trungpa Rinpoche, His Holiness was requested to fulfill this intention. When he completed the composition in 1990, he conferred the empowerment upon the Sakyong (known then as the Sawang) alone, making him the sole holder of this lineage. As instructed by His Holiness, The Sakyong did the retreat practice of the sadhana and after three years was permitted to confer the abhisheka upon the Shambhala sangha.

First bestowed by the current Sakyong in 1993 and several times subsequently at Vajrayana Seminary, this will be the first time in many years that the sangha will have an opportunity to receive the blessings of this abhisheka.

The abhisheka is open to all and you may register online here – http://halifax.shambhala.org/program_details.php?id=93314&cid=197

In order to make this program available to as many people as possible, we are pleased to offer tiered pricing. Your generosity at any level will help cover the cost of the abhisheka. Please see the registration page for details.

Melanya Sings the Blues: Benefit Performance

September 12th, 2011 by

Free Introductory Performance Workshop

February 17th, 2011 by

Your Performance In Art & Life
Tuesday, Feb. 22, 7:30pm – 10pm

Location: Hipbone Studio:1874 E. Burnside #104, Portland (enter from parking lot)
For reservations or information contact: Anet Ris-Kelman at 503-777-5879

A unique experiential approach that brings joy, mindfulness, imagination, spontaneity & play into the creative process and performance.

Using experimental theater techniques developed by Scott Kelman (from influences as diverse as the Open Theater, Eastern Culture and Western Jazz), and Anet’s extensive background in dance and movement improvisation, we will explore:

* Developing Mindfulness and Presence
* Generating creative impulses, imagery, states of being and character through movement and body awareness.
* Playing with the expressive possibilities of movement, sound and spoken word.
* Improvising using rhythm and energy within an aesthetic form that encourages authenticity.
attaining & projecting presence
* “Radical” listening
* Collaborating in ensemble through empathy.
* Spatial awareness and its impact.
* Communicating with an audience
* Ceveloping semi structured improvisations to develop emerging material.
* Working from a foundation of joy & alert relaxation in both life & art.

Anet Ris-Kelman was Scott Kelman’s assistant for over 10 years, is a member of the Tuesday Group & performs in Portland & LA. She danced professionally in NYC with Daniel Nagrin’s improvisation group, ‘The Workgroup’, and in LA with the ‘Rudy Perez Performance Ensemble”, among others. Her video art poems won a national prize and have shown internationally. She has received grants from the City of LA for theater and video projects.

What people are saying about the workshops:

“This amazing work, that Anet teaches so brilliantly, has informed and benefited everything I have done: as a teacher, workshop facilitator, performer, mindset coach, and entrepreneur.

“Can ‘presence’ be taught?” Anet proves that the answer to that question is a resounding yes! This work rocks!”

“These are invaluable tools for performance that enable greater focus & fresh approaches.”

“Anet is a wonderfully direct and present teacher and the work is deeply challenging and fun.”

“This work helped me to be more conscious-in-self rather than self-conscious.”

“transformative”, “direct skill training in how to stay present”, “fun”

October 7th, 2010 by

September 13th, 2010 by

Pacific Northwest Winter Retreat details now online

August 16th, 2010 by

Pacific Northwest Winter Retreat details now online
This year’s Pacific Northwest Winter Retreat―at Camp Pringle, on the shore of Shawnigan Lake, Vancouver Island―is set to run from December 18, 2010 to January 1, 2011.

The retreat comprises two two-week programs (each with one-week participation options): a Half-Dathun mindfulness-awareness meditation retreat open to all; and, for Shambhala Vajrayana Seminary graduates, a Ngondro and Werma Retreat.

Click on the following links for full descriptions on the Victoria Shambhala Centre’s website:

Pacific Northwest Half-Dathun
with Margaret Jones Callahan
Camp Pringle, Shawnigan Lake, BC
December 18, 2010 – January 1, 2011

Pacific Northwest Ngondro and Werma Retreat
with Brian Callahan
Camp Pringle, Shawnigan Lake, BC
December 18, 2010 – January 1, 2011

Learn more about our regional community on the Kootenay Shambhala Centre’s Pacific Northwest Shambhala Community page.