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The Duke University Dance Program presents: Across the Threshold: Creativity, Being and Healing, an interdisciplinary conference exploring diverse paths, with the goal leading to personal, social, and environmental transformation. The Conference will be held at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina on February 28 – March 3, 2013


The 2013 International Conference brings together artists, scientists, spiritual activists, healers and academicians interested in a holistic approach to create more awareness contextualizing ourselves vis-à-vis the environment we live in and to generate an empowered response to the global environmental destruction we currently face.

The vision of the conference is stated as: “Acknowledging the complex interrelationship of mind, body, and spirit is a step towards empowered and enlightened healing of ourselves, our relationships, and our environment. We are physical, mental, social, emotional, and spiritual beings, and the interplay between all these parts of ourselves affects our quality of life moment-to-moment — our ability to synthesize ideas and knowledge; to develop our intuition; to imagine and create; to heal.”

Highlights of the Conference include acclaimed photographic artist and cultural/environmental activist Chris Jordan as the keynote speaker for the 2013 conference.  Chris is internationally-known for his work that “explores contemporary mass culture from a variety of photographic and conceptual perspectives, connecting the viewer viscerally to the enormity and power of humanity’s collective will. Edge-walking the lines between art and activism, beauty and horror, abstraction and representation, the near and the far, the visible and the invisible, his work asks us to consider our own multi-layered roles in becoming more conscious stewards of our complex and embattled world.”  Jordan’s works, which include solo and group exhibits, several books, and an upcoming documentary film, are exhibited and published worldwide.

A pre-conference workshop, Healing Through Creative Action: Authenticity is the Key, will be held on Thursday, February 28th taught by key presenter and community-based artist Lilly Yeh.  A successful painter and professor, Lily’s life was altered when she witnessed the tragic events of Tiananmen Square in 1989. Through the 1980s, Lily was gradually realizing that being an artist “is not just about making art…It is about delivering the vision one is given…and about doing the right thing without sparing oneself.”   Since the 80’s, Lily has devoted herself to transformation through art and community-building.  Through The Village of Arts and Humanities, a community-based art organization that Lily co-founded in 1989 in Philadelphia, Lily, neighborhood residents, and staff have transformed more than 120 abandoned lots into gardens and parks. They also have renovated abandoned homes, and created educational programs, art workshops, after-school programs, a youth theater, and joyful community celebrations. Today, the Village of Arts and Humanities serves thousands of low-income people every year.

Key presenter Ronald K. Brown  founded the New York-based contemporary dance ensemble EVIDENCE, A DANCE COMPANY in 1985.  He has collaborated with such artists as composer/designer Omotayo Wunmi Olaiya, the late writer Craig G. Harris, director Ernie McClintock’s Jazz Actors Theater, choreographers Patricia Hoffbauer and Rokiya Kone, and composers Robert Een, Oliver Lake, Bernadette Speech, David Simons, and Don Meissner.“Dancing Spirit” 2010, a tribute to Judith Jamison. Brown has received numerous awards and fellowships including a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in Choreography, a National Endowment for the Arts Choreographer’s Fellowship, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in choreography, New York Dance and Performance Award (Bessie), a Black Theater Alliance Award, the American Dance Festival Humphrey/Weidman/Limón Award, and fellowships from the Edward and Sally van Lier Fund. In addition, Brown was named Def Dance Jam Workshop Mentor of the Year in 2000.  In 2003, he received an AUDELCO (Black Theatre Award) for his choreography for Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats, originally produced by the McCarter Theater and presented off-Broadway in 2003. In fall 2006, Brown received The United States Artists Rose Fellowship.  He was one of only four choreographers of 50 artists to receive the inaugural award.

DukenewsThe 2013 Conference is hosted by the Duke University Dance Program in collaboration with the following co-sponsors to-date:

Duke University

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Program on Integrative Medicine

The Conference is also made possible in part by a Visiting Artist Grant from the Council for the Arts, Office of the Provost, Duke University, the Office of the Dean of Humanities, Duke University, and the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation.


KalaAmbroseheadshotDec2012About Kala Ambrose: Award winning author, national columnist, inspirational speaker, and host of the Explore Your Spirit with Kala Radio and TV Show, Kala Ambrose’s teachings are described as discerning, empowering and inspiring. Whether she’s speaking with world-renowned experts on the Explore Your Spirit with Kala Show, writing about empowering lifestyle choices, reporting on new discoveries in the scientific and spiritual arenas or teaching to groups around the country, fans around the world tune in daily for her inspirational musings and lively thought-provoking conversations.

A highly interactive teacher on a mission to educate, entertain and inspire, Kala teaches and writes about ancient wisdom teachings and how their techniques can be used in modern day living. Her books, The Awakened Aura: Experiencing the Evolution of Your Energy Body and 9 Life Altering Lessons: Secrets of the Mystery Schools Unveiled both cover these topics.

In addition, Kala shares her love of history, travel and the spirit world in her books Spirits of New Orleans and Ghosthunting North Carolina. Her books are designed to explore the history of cities in an entertaining manner while sharing haunted stories and offering travel tips on how to best see the cities to shop, dine, stay, and visit the haunted sites.

Kala writes for the Huffington Post, the Examiner, AOL, Yahoo and Fate Magazine and presents workshops nationally on the Mind/Body/Spirit connection including Auras and Energy Fields, Developing Business Intuition, Haunted History, and Wisdom Teachings at the Omega Institute, John Edward Presents Infinite Quest, the Learning Annex, LilyDale Assembly, and Daily Om. More about Kala at


About the Author

Kala Ambrose is "Your Travel Guide to the Other Side". Award winning Author, Intuitive, Wisdom Teacher, Podcaster and Lifestyle Expert, she helps Entrepreneurs, Seekers and Visionaries live their best life.

She is the award winning author of six books including The Awakened Dreamer, The Awakened Psychic, and The Awakened Aura, and has taught thousands around the world how to connect with their soul path and destiny and create a life and career that is balanced and in tune with their life purpose and goals.

Whether she’s teaching students at her Academy of Mystical Arts & Spiritual Sciences, writing and speaking about empowering lifestyle choices or teaching to groups around the country, fans around the world tune in daily for her inspirational musings and lively thought-provoking conversations.

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