In my earlier Stretch work exploring cross-generational conversations, isolation and social fragmentation were major LGBT challenges. Today, we need to be each other’s neighbours even more, consciously listening, building community, sharing perspectives, weaving a stronger social fabric, each of us recognising our unique value to each other, while gently nurturing ourselves each day. Am I living as fully and richly as I can at this moment? Am I open to sharing? Being curious? Let’s talk!
David James has worked as a theatre maker in New York, LA, London and Melbourne, currently leading BOOK Music & Lyrics, a professional development programme for musical theatre writers, composers, lyricists & directors. He began spiritual awareness joining Al-Anon in 1985, leading beginners’ sessions at the Manhattan Gay & Lesbian Community Centre. He later studied with Louise Hay, Bernie Siegel and Stephen Levine, and was a founding member of Cynthia O’Neil’s Friends In Deed.
10:00 - 11:30 CET
Queer Sound Healing Immersion with Mathew Bergan & Jonny Seymour
Queer Sound Healing is an immersive sound journey into the deep nature of being; an embodied soulful healing ritual, celebrating queerdom & survival. It offers a ceremonial space for LGBTQI people to acknowledge the deep truths about who they are & presents the potential to awaken to the higher Self. A multi-sensory transcendental sonic meditation designed to uplift the Soul & improve mental health. It includes ritual, body work, narrative therapy, sound, song, vibroacoustic therapy.
Facilitators are Stereogomous, including Paul Mac & Jonny Seymour with Matthew Bergan, one of Sydney’s leading identities in yoga & former queer performance artist. Over the past 25 years Seymour & Mac have been producing & DJ’ing electronic music, Bergan has been exploring yoga, Tantra & urban spiritualism. Stereogamous remixes include LCD Soundsystem, Rufus Du Sol, George Michael & Kylie
10:00 - 11:30 CET
Rehearsal for a Culture of Relating with Kai Ehrhardt
This exploration fuses elements of honest communication, movement, sounds, play and witnessing before shifting into an open space of unpredictable relational and communal composition. Together, we will inspire curiosity, compassion and insight about who we are in our encounters with others.
Kai is a breath therapist based on Prof. Ilse Middendorf’s work, a Continuum teacher, holds the German Heilpraktiker license for psychotherapy and co-founded the Somatic Academy of Berlin. He created Authentic Eros – Explorations for Men & For and Beyond all Genders and curates the STRETCH and the BODY IQ festivals. In 2016 he initiated Village.Berlin. He believes that the conscious body and the reclaiming of Eros are crucial elements in our evolution toward an integral way of life. Kai teaches since 2002 in Europe and in the US.
11:00 - 12:30 CET
Bow to Yourself - Scores for Playful Fighting with Dorian Bonelli
When you forget all your dualistic ideas, everything becomes your teacher, and everything can be the object of worship.” Shunryu Suzuki Playfight is an encounter between dominance and dance and a field of creativity that undermines habits of competition. A playground that frees us from attitudes of othering. From here we can start a creative process using verbal instructions as inspiration. By getting into contact with another man´s power we get into contact with our own unique expression of strength. Bring pen and paper. Open Cam obligatory.
Dorian Bonelli twin artist pansexual bike messenger performer writer non-duality shape-shifting tasks scores minimalism trans animal movement playfight vienna berlin collective creativity
13:00 - 14:30 CET
What is erotic or sexual energy? with Maevon Canter
What do we mean when we talk about sexual or erotic energy? What is the difference between this and other types of energy? Where does it reside and how can we work with it? After creating a joint working space and a brief spoken introduction this will be a practical session where we will each explore these questions using our own bodies as our laboratories and sharing our results to inspire further discoveries.
Maevon has pursued an informal exploration of spirituality and movement for over 30 years. He has studied Fine Art and The Alexander Technique and calls himself a Radical Faerie. In 2009 Maevon began studying somatic practices with Authentic Eros and certified as a Sacred Intimate in the Body Electric tradition. He has partially spent his lockdown exploring Self-pleasuring in self-isolation (self-pleasulation) with a like-minded group, which is where this mediation originated.
13:00 - 14:30 CET
Sex-positive/fetish munch with Harvey Rabbit
Something that I am missing even more than darkrooms and play parties is the opportunity to meet each other in sex-positive spaces and share information about sex and kink. I'd like to invite you to dress up in your favorite fetish gear and spend an hour with like minded individuals to talk about kink and maybe even flirt a bit! This space will be moderated in English. Open to all.
Harvey Rabbit (He|Him) is a trans filmmaker, photographer and pervert. He is a bdsm practitioner, (dominant switch) specializing in rope bondage and different forms of consensual sadism.
13:00 - 14:00 CET
Poetry and Embodiment with Michael Gilroy
Keats said “touch has a memory”, and Touch is something I notice is not available to a lot of us right now.. And maybe poetry can ‘act ‘ As way in to this Present moment that touch sometimes can do.. We will explore together how poetry can Open our field of awareness.
‘My lips got lost on the way to the kiss - that's how drunk I was.’ Rumi
Mike Gilroy Is Boston based, Irish born, Eclectic lover of Poetry and nature. He has been a member of The Eastonmountainmens community for 11 years. He has a history of frolicking with diverse community’s: from Body Electric school to Authentic Eros & the Radical Fairies & as a facilitator for a local lgbt Catholic group . He spends time as a Community builder and as a Facilitator with Meditation and Working for Peace.
15:00 - 16:00 CET
Energy, Improvisation & Meditative Movement with Eddy Lathan
Class intention focuses on bringing meditative exercises/techniques, improvised movement and self care techniques into a singular practice that is well rounded and grounded. Class begins with pranayama exercises followed by guided energy work techniques into self massage. We will then lead into a round of sun salutations that will lead into guided movement exercises including sensory depravation meditation, and interpretive improvised meditative movement. Class concludes with savasana and a positive affirmation exercise.
Eddy 'damoN' Lathan IV is a multidisciplinary artist, dance, fitness and yoga teacher from Brooklyn, New York. He trained, studied and danced with The Hip Hop Dance Conservatory (H+) in New York City from 2008 - 2013. He received his YTT 200 and meditation teacher certification in Goa, India in 2019. He is the Co-Founder and lead instructor for NuDance (2015 - Present; www.nudance.nyc). Eddy is also a member of Dancers Unlimited NYC (https://duhawaii.com/)
16:00 - 17:30 CET
God Is Androgynous / Reclaiming Religion with Gal Naor
This lecture-discussion will suggest new perspectives around the function of faith, spirituality, and religion, and their redefinition by our community. As well as highlight the critical role our community has in the salvation of humankind during this transformative era, welcoming the Age of Aquarius. Some of the topics we’ll discuss: The ancient role of Transgender people in the religious institution (and their future role); The Future is Female; Unconditional Love & the Third Temple vision.
Gal Naor is an Israeli Sign Language interpreter, body-mind researcher, and founder of The progressive wave, a Berlin-based performative initiative. In their work, they combine dance, performance art, visual art, and consciousness studies. Their approach to the performance world is inclusive and based on the understanding that each body should move in its unique way. Including a diverse range of performers, their work is encouraging the empowerment of queer identities.
16:00 - 17:15 CET
Introduction to Belly Dance Fusion with Yoni Biyé
Let's engage in a thought experiment about the origins of dance as a reaction to music. I will show you how I let the music decide when and how I move. The workshop will progress through movements from different styles to create a combination, before we finish off the class with a cooldown to recenter ourselves.
Yoni is a transnational fusion artist whose style focuses on theatrical elements and subtle plays on the musicality of the songs he works with. His technique is based in explorations of Central Asian and MENA dance styles, as well as a strong foundation in Egyptian folkloric and Turkish classical dance.
16:00 - 17:00 CET
Race, Sex, and The Future: Reimagining Masculinity in Unprecedented Times with Khary Polk
In a moment of global pandemic and protests against racism, has manhood lost its meaning? How might intersectionality, a concept formed by black feminists, help us forge new connections between different communities of men? In this guided conversation, participants will think about the intersections that exist between and among masculine-identified people, and consider how our evolving ideas of race, sexuality, eros, and community can create a more liberated and politically liberating view of masculinity.
Khary Polk is an Associate Professor of Black Studies & Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies at Amherst College. He has taught at the JFK Institute for North American Studies at the Freie Universität Berlin, and has written for a number of queer anthologies, including Why Are Faggots So Afraid of Faggots?: Flaming Challenges to Masculinity Objectification, and the Desire to Conform, If We Have To Take Tomorrow, Corpus, and Think Again.
18:00 - 19:15 CET
Drag and the Performance of Gender with Wil Fisher
In this playful and experiential workshop we will discuss gender performance and drag. We will share our experiences performing our own gender and with performing gender(s) outside of our own. Participants are encouraged to bring a few pieces of drag to play with as we explore how drag can help us embrace performing gender in new and experimental ways.
Wil Fisher is a life coach, facilitator, and drag queen! Wil spent many years in NYC where he earned his MA in Applied Theater, performed a solo show he wrote and produced, raised money for nonprofits, co-founded a company called Man Question, and created his drag alter ego, Sylvia London. After NYC, he served as executive director of an LGBTQ retreat center. He is a certified life coach and founder of Willfully Living in San Diego.
18:00 - 19:00 CET
Stretch Lounge with Tony Just
We invite you to the Stretch lounge, an informal open space for discussion, reflection, saying hello and relaxing. Hosted by Axel on Saturday and Tony on Sunday.
Tony Just is an artist from America and lives in Berlin, and has studied meditation for three years with Axel Müller. He uses a combination of techniques, eye to eye or partner meditation and also guided meditation using colors to represent different emotions. He regularly hosts the village meditation and healing spaces.
20:00 - 21:00 CET
Staying with my Experience with Julian Crotti
The more I exercise my capacity to stay present with my own experience, the more I welcome my responsibility to remain in my body and connected to its knowledge and intuition, the more of me is available for connection. These are simple steps that the body knows how to do and if done well and regularly open up a world of possibility and information when relating to one person, a group of people and the wider world/universe. Join me for an exploration into the simplicity and pleasure of human relating.
Julian Is a student and practitioner of Relational Whole Body Focusing, an experiential therapeutic method that looks to re-establish, strengthen and celebrate connection with the body's own wisdom and knowing.
20:30 - 22:00 CET
Cum Together with Julian Martin
In this meditation and masturbation ritual we can switch between different roles, experiment with them and try things out. Celebrate with other men* your body, your genitals, your lust and your arousal. Slip into the role of an exhibitionist or voyeur. Be as 'shameless' or restrained as it is right for you. You can change your role at any time. Clothing, nudity and masturbation are welcome.
Julian originally studied acting, singing and dance before he discovered his passion for massage and bodywork. He regularly organises and leads courses for men and weekend workshops in Zürich under the title of “Men Bodywork”. The main areas of work are breath, voice, movement, touch, self-acceptance and the discovery and expression of your own needs as the key to a free and fulfilling (sex) life.
20:30 - 22:00 CET
The list of facilitators and the program of Stretch Festival for Gay, Bi, Trans & Queer Men are subject to last minute changes.