People's Profiles - 2017 Line Up
The many faces of those bringing the festival to life:
Peter Kay - Well-being, fitness, healthy living
Peter Kay is passionate about the impact of well-being in today’s society and has been involved in diverse, highly successful, national projects, which have made real differences to many people: such as in schools, youth work and for the NHS and community projects. Peter is passionate about the benefits of Yoga for all and has taught in schools in India and the UK. The yoga techniques he shares are influenced by the teachings of Dr. Swami Gitananda, who is often referred to as the Father of Modern Scientific Yoga. Peter trained in this practical & holistic practice at the yoga satsanga ashram, completing further training in yoga for children and teenagers.
Louise Lloyd - Mundo Dance and Barre Concept
Louise currently leads 20 energetic sessions a week consisting of community dance, BarreConcept, Mundo Dance, adult ballet and youth contemporary - with participants ranging from 2-80+ years. Louise graduated from London Contemporary Dance School with a First Class BA (Hons) Degree in Contemporary Dance in 2013. Following this she was part of Transitions Post-Graduate Dance company at Laban, during which time she performed in many venues around the UK and Europe, receiving her Masters in Dance Performance with Distinction. Since graduating Louise has worked as a freelance dancer and dance teacher, performing at various festivals and showcasing events as well as choreographing her own work, Waltz of the Flower Sellers, for the Wales Dance Platform 2015. Louise became a qualified BarreConcept instructor in 2015 and a registered Mundo Dance instructor in 2016 and is currently teaching classes in both disciplines in Cardiff and the surrounding area.
Natalie Garry - fitness, well-being, healthy living
DanceSing is a unique class focusing on overall wellbeing. We are passionate about creating harmony and improving people’s lives through dance and singing. Natalie trained as a professional ballet dancer at the English National Ballet School and has performed with Scottish Ballet and Scottish Dance Theatre. She is qualified as a trainer in many exercise programmes including fitness, nutrition, weight management, exercise counselling and stress management.
Vic Phillips - craft, creative, good-life
Vic Phillips is one half of SingleMaltTeapot along with fiance Samantha Wheeler. During their pursuit of their own take on the ‘Good Life’ Vic can generally be found with an axe or craft knife in hand and wood chippings gathering at his feet. Working with sections of wood that would otherwise find themselves as scrap he designs and carves spoons, knives and other items for the home that combine traditional techniques with contemporary styling. Guided by the slopes and curves of the grain he looks to continue the narrative of something that has grown over potentially hundreds of years that may otherwise have reached it’s final chapter.
Lee John Phillips and Diana Brook - craft, creative
Artists Lee John Phillips and Diana Brook -
Lee was a winner of the professional category in the Welsh Sketchbook Exhibition 2016 and Lee and Diana are both principle moderators at the WJEC - a leading award winning organisation in the UK providing assessment, training and educational resources.
To find our more about Lee’s current exciting project see here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/why-im-drawing-every-single-item-in-my-late-granddads-shed/. To find out more about Diana see here: http://artpembrokeshire.co.uk/artists/185/
Real Adventure Company - Activities
We celebrate wild places and the sense of pure natural connection you get from immersing yourself in nature. It has been known for many years that adventure and challenging yourself are hugely beneficial to your sense of wellbeing. Adventure sports are not exclusively for the super fit or the dedicated adrenaline junkies, in fact far from it… every sport has an entry level and can be enjoyed at a tranquil leisurely pace.We will be putting some sessions on during The Big Retreat Wales, specifically pitched at promoting a bit of escapism, discovering new places, exploring and enjoying a bit of the magic Pembrokeshire has to offer. Absolutely no previous experience is needed, as we say this is about trying new things and immersing yourself in awe inspiring wild places Pembrokeshire has to offer.
Mairi Taylor - Workshops
Mairi created FABfitness over 6 years ago - experimenting with many forms of exercise and diets, focusing on a healthy mind and body. Having studied juice therapy her diet is heavily plant based diet, key to health and vitality. She shares her knowledge and passion for juicing at various Health and Wellness conferences. In August 2014 Mairi became The Natural Juice Therapy for Jason Vale aka Juice Master School of Natural Juice Therapy and now guide and mentor students across the world to become Natural Juice Therapists as well as hosting the Juice Academies for the School.
Al Brunker - The Versability Shop
As a child, Al was inspired by his dad to play with words. He admired the brevity and wit of his father’s messages on holiday postcards home, and how he'd always use a birthday as an excuse to write a little celebratory verse. Al learnt the value of self-expression and humour in building relationships from these childhood moments, and the importance of spending the currency of words wisely while it's free. Al's a lover of rogue apostrophe's, thinks the passive voice is highly overrated and is such a persistent procrastinator he'll never get round to finishing this profile. He’s a regular slam performer and once won the Ledbury poetry slam (and the Swindon one).
Tunde Olatunji - The Versability Shop
TUNDE OLATUNJI is a London-born storyteller and software designer. He has worked with the London Philharmonic Orchestra as a librettist and been shortlisted for the PRS Foundation New Music Award. He is the author of The Battle of the Wordsmiths, the first of an eight part epic verse series published by Delhi based Suryastra. He is a graduate of University College London, the National Film and Television School and Manchester Metropolitan University's Writing School. Seen here at Frankfurt Bookfair 2010
Tom Lawless - Healer & Earth Vibration therapist
Delighted that Tom Lawless is joining us. A Healer and Earth Vibrations therapist with more than 20 years working with energies, Tom will be running several sessions at The Big Retreat Wales as well as installing conscious walkways, bringing the magic of wellbeing into connection of nature and the wonders of Sacred Geometry. Join his workshop of Dowsing there every line "Ley it on the Line" or check our your Aura. As Tom would say "Everyone can feel these energies - it's just a case of having a go". We really recommend that you do!
Amelia Stone - Big Play Narberth
Amelia Stone, founder of Big Play Narberth, specialising in creative enriching activities for children and families, including yoga and Mindfulness, soft play and messy play, has over 15 years of experience working with children. Following 7 years managing a busy children's Out of School Club, focusing on the provision on quality care and engaging play opportunities, Amelia began her own business when she became a mother, so that she could juggle her work commitments whilst prioritising the needs of her children. This business has thrived and developed over the last 6 years. She teaches family and children's yoga, mindfulness and meditation classes both privately and in schools. She also works in events, providing a range of activities for children’s
parties and community events. She is currently planning for children's event for the Narberth Food Festival, Starry Skies Family Festival and will be running yoga, and Mindfulness workshops at the Food Festival Education Day for the 4th year running. She is really looking forward to being part of The Big Retreat Wales this year
Sal Boyton - Lifeseeker Wales
You know those real-life stories about women you have spent a lifetime searching for their ‘calling in life’ and eventually found what they love doing at 40.
Sal, trained product designer, turned marketeer. Now founder of Life Seeker, a positive lifestyle hub for west Wales.
In a nutshell, Life Seeker exists to inspire people to take time out to live a happier and healthier life. As a fairly new project, it’s pretty awesome to share that it’s receiving some overwhelmingly good feedback in its debut year.
It’s been an interesting journey and I can now genuinely say that I love what I do. Here’s a little insight into how I got here…
Finding my passion
It wasn’t until 2014 whilst working as a marketing consultant, that the ‘passion penny’ dropped and I realised what really made me tick.
Life Seeker as a concept danced around my head in tiny dissociated pieces for several years, until BOOM, I literally saw the light.
I was called to work on a few social enterprise projects (a welcome change from the commercial arena I had fallen into) and for the first time in years, felt a strong connection between my heart and head.
I realised that by applying years of training and skills to a cause that was going to positively impact PEOPLE, I could create a path to doing work that mattered. My passion was in people. Helping to inspire them to be better humans, more content with themselves, and their life.
There were several other epiphanies to bring Life Seeker to fruition, such as watching the documentary ‘Happy’, reading John C. Parkin’s book ‘F**k It – Do What You Love’, volunteering for The Cheerful Project (Span Arts) and following the Action for Happiness movement which led to attending their ‘Exploring What Matters’ course.
I was mesmerised by a scientific statistic that although 60% of our happiness is controlled by genes and circumstance, a whopping 40% is guided by doing things we choose to do.
Being a activist in taking responsibility for creating my own happiness, I believe the method to reaching this 40% is in how you prioritise and make choices about work, money, the people you surround yourself with, your hobbies, what you eat and how you move.
I felt a huge urge to share this message with others and wanted to do this (as a ‘wellbeing layman’) using my marketing expertise.
So I did.
In 2015, I made the risky decision to quit my work as a consultant to follow my mission to do all of the above. I tuned into the first Happier World Conference which outlined the science and signposted me to the some of the key movers and shakers on happiness. Since then, I haven’t looked back.
On a local level, I’m building the Life Seeker hub as a portal to inspire people to live a more balanced life in west Wales. On a national level, I envisage Life Seeker inspiring a much larger audience to ‘design their happy’.
There is no magic potion for living contently and so the hub doesn’t preach about what you should and shouldn’t eat, what kind of job you should aspire to or what you should physically look like to be happy. FIND OUT MORE HERE