For Immediate Release

Media contact: 
Stella Adelman, 415-828-56489,
Press photos available upon request
Dance Mission Theater and MamaCoatl present
A healing arts music, dance and poetry festival honoring San Francisco’s International Day for the Elimination of  Violence Against Women and Girls 
Saturday, November 24th at 7pm
Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St, SF CA 94110
 SAN FRANCISCO, CA – On Saturday, November 24th, Bay Area residents will observe the United Nations’ annual International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls with music, healing ceremonies, dance, art, poetry and information. The commemoration will kick off with a community gathering and healing arts festival taking place in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District at Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St., beginning at 7 pm. A $15 entrance fee is requested to cover costs, but no one will be turned away for lack of funds. 
Under the title “Guardianas de la Vida” (Guardians of Life), the evening asks us to take a moment to pause and question why it is that in the year 2012 we are still dealing with issues surrounding femicide, an epidemic that crosses borders, and includes an official proclmation by Supervisor John Avalos recognizing November 25th as San Francisco’s  International Day for Eliminating Violence Against Women and Girls.   
“It is important that we continue to dismantle the culture of violence” said MamaCoatl (pronounced mama-coe-ah-tull), who – with co-sponsorship from Sophia University, Palo Alto (formerly  Institute of Transpersonal Psychology) – spearheaded the day’s observance.“The City of San Francisco has issued annual proclamations for the last seven years, to remind all that much work needs to be done at all levels when it comes to addressing violence,”   she added.  At no time of the year is this intervention more appropriate than the last week of November, when the American identity is reinforced by the unconscious glorification of genocide inherent in the Thanksgiving holiday.” 
The show begins with an invocation by Yoruba chief, author and professor Luisah Teish, followed by the poetry of Nina Serrano and Yosimar Reyes.  Other artists include: Bata drummer Carolyn Brandy; singer-songwriters MamaCoatl and Maria Loreto Ramirez Morales; Afro-Cuban folkloric dancer Susana Arenas Pedroso; poet and street dancer Nicole Klaymoon; modern dancer and teenager Paloma McFly; and the brass Balkan fusion band Inspector Gadje. Master healer Marja West  will perform a community healing ritual. Curator MamaCoatl will act as mistress of ceremonies. 
Food and drink will also be available.
MamaCoatl is also  also preparing a Healer’s Saloon at Ictus Gallery that will be held on Sunday, November 25th, starting at 2 PM.  The community is invited to attend this event as well to receive holistic treatments from a variety of health practitioners at no cost.
For more information about Guardianas de la Vida, the Healing Saloon and the behind the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women  please visit
About the UN Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women:
On December 17, 1999, the United Nations’ General Assembly designated November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and invited governments, international organizations and nongovernmental organizations to launch activities to raise public awareness of the problem on that day.
Women’s activists have marked November 25 as a day against violence since 1981, in remembrance of the brutal assassination of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists, in the Dominican Republic on November 25, 1960, on orders from Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo. More information can be found at
About Sophia University:
Founded in 1975 as Institute of Transpersonal Psychology or ITP, Sophia University is a leader in transpersonal research and education of clinicians, spiritual guides, wellness caregivers, and consultants who apply transpersonal principles and values in a variety of settings. With its holistic approach to education and psychotherapy, Sophia attracts students from all over the world to both residential and distance-learning programs. In addition to its Women’s Spirituality and other graduate programs, Sophia University operates the Community Center for Health & Wellness, a professional counseling center and training facility offering quality services at an affordable sliding scale fee to the surrounding community. More information can be found at
About MamaCoatl, event curator:
MamaCoatl is a barrio poet, songstress, performance activist, and spiritual healer who comes from the Yaqui people of the Sonora desert. Based in the Mission district, her work explores sound, ritual and cultural activism as power sources for public health. 
MamaCoatl received an M.A. in Women Spirituality from New College of California and MFA in Creative Inquiry. 
In 2006 MamaCoatl brought International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Girls to San Francisco after performances in Mexico and Peru. The event has become an annual celebration of healing and nonviolence including sixteen days of action, “artivism,” healing and education in the Mission district’s community. 
About the artists:
Marja West: Marja West is a spriritual teacher/mentor and a self-described “ Semi-Wrathful Dakini-Divine Love Agent Provocateu.” A master healer/medical intuitive, she is a the host on Human Spririt Radio’s Waking Gods & Goddesses – Emboding divine Wisdom and the Sensual Life. 
Susana Arenas PedrosoSusana Arenas Pedroso began her artistry in dance at age 12 when she took the opportunity to study at the Casa de la Cultura in Matanzas, Cuba. She began dancing professionally with Terra Virgen in 1991, She continues on to dance with  Alafia Ire, Oche Olorum  and in 1994 she joined world renowned  Raices Profundas as a soloist. After settling in the Bay Area in 1999, she merged her two former companies (Olorun and Sandunga Cubana) into Arenas Dance Company (2004), a folkloric and popular dance company with a commitment to sharing Cuban culture in an accessible form for a wide audience.
Nicole Klaymoon: Nicole Klaymoon is the Artistic Director andfounder of Embodiment Project. She received a BA in dance from UCLA and is currently in the Creative Inquiry MFA program at CIIS. She has performed her one-woman show, The Sixth Vowel, at various venues across the country and Europe including the Hip Hop Theater Festival in NYC and DC, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Miami Project Hip Hop, the Bride Theater in Philadelphia, the UC Riverside Theater, and the Edinburgh fringe Festival in Scotland. Founded in 2009, Nicole Klaymoon’s Embodiment Project explores how movement drives narrative, using a variety of urban dance styles and text to enhance notions of “language.” Embodiment Project divides the traditional divide separating the so-called “high art” of modern dance and  longstanding culutral traditions connected to “street “ dances. 
Carolyn Brandy: Carolyn Brandy has been drumming for over 40 years. She has been instrumental in bringing women to the spirit and healing of the Drum. Carolyn is the Artistic Dreictor of Women Drummers International and co-creator of the Born to Drum Women’s Drum Camp. Shw was the founder of the Bay Area’s favorite marching band, Sistah Boom in 1981. IN 1976, Carolyn co-founded the popular band, Alive! That troured the nation for almost  ten years and has four recordings to its credit. She has worked in the Bay Area for many years as a composer, performer, teacher and cultural worker. She is an expert in the folkloric drumming styles found throughout the island of Cuba and is a practitioner of the Yoruba-based religion, Regla de Ocha. 
Nina Serrano: Nina Serrano is an American poet, writer, storyteller, and independent media producer who lives in Oakland, California. She is the author of Heartsongs: The Collected Poems of Nina Serrano (1980) and Pass it on!: How to start your own senior storytelling program in the schools (Stagebridge). Her poems are widely anthologized, including the literary anthology, Under the Fifth Sun: Latino Writers from California (Heyday Books), and three anthologies of peace poems edited by Mary Rudge from Estuary Press. She translated two chap books from Peruvian poet Adrian Arias. She currently leads storytelling workshops at senior centers and elementary schools through Serrano has won international film awards, including the XXXIII Mostra internazionale D’Arte Cinematografica award for Que Hacer: What is to Be Done?; and the Kraków, Poland International Short Film Festival award for After the Earthquake: Despues del terremoto.
Maria Loreto Ramirez Morales:  Chilean vocalist Maria Loreto was born in the town of Temuco, Chile, the cultural center of the Mapuche Indians who successfully resisted the European invasion and maintained independent control of their territory for over 300 years. Urged on by her father, Loreto began performing when she was five and was an accomplished guitarist at 10. The nearby Mapuche culture influenced the young musician, who learned to play their instruments including the txrompe, pifilas, cascahillas, cultxun, txutxuka. Their spirit of resistance infuses Loreto’s music, which emphasizes social justice and revolutionary songs by artists such as Mercedes Sosa, Inti Illimani, Violeta Parra, Sol y Lluvia, and Victor Jara. Loreto sees music as a way to transfer feelings, emotions, pain, touch hearts and create “conciencia colectiva.” 
Yosimar Reyes:  From the Mountains of Guerrero, Mexico comes Yosimar Reyes, a Two-Spirit Poet/Activist Based out of San Jose,CA. His style has been described as “a brave and vulnerable voice that shines light on the issues affecting Queer Immigrant Youth and the many disenfranchised communities in the U.S and throughout the world.” Yosimar has been featured in the Documentary 2nd Verse: the Rebirth of Poetry ( and has been published in Mariposas: A Modern Anthology of Queer Latino Poetry (Floricanto Press). His words have open up concerts for Carlos Santana in his latest endeavor Architects of a New Dawn, a multimedia project. 
 Paloma McFly:  at 14 years old Paloma is dance student, prolific songwriter and powerful speaker. At last year’s Guardianas de la Vida, she received a standing ovation for her dance/spoken word piece.  
DELIRA: Delira is an acoustic string ensemble: violin, viola, cello, and bass that accompanies Teresa Contreras, a strong vocalist who leads the audience through a spectrum of emotions. Playing both classic and original tunes, Delira aims to raise consciousness around Latino culture, history and current issues.
Inspector Gadje: Insepctor Gadje  is the collaboration of 12+ bay area musicians, around the shared passion of Balkan romani (“gypsy”) brass music. Hailing from widely different backgrounds, they studied under several local and international masters and have developed an unique voice over the last 2 years by playing from town squares in mexico to venues such as the Fox theatre in Oakland.  The name is not only a playful reference to the popular cartoon, but also the band non-Romani identity as “gadje”. Through the study and performance of its music, Inspector Gadje pays homage to Romani culture and community, all the while acknowledging our position as cultural outsiders and allies.
What:  Guardianas de la Vida,  A healing arts music, dance and poetry festival honoring the International Day for the Elimination of  Violence Against Women
When:  Saturday, November 24th at 7pm
Where: Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St, SF CA 94110
Tickets: $15 available online at; no one turned away for lack of funds at the door



Stella Adelman, Susana Aranas, Carolyn Brandy

Guardianas de la Vida
Saturday November 24th, 2012
doors open at 6 PM
7 PM Performance
Dance Mission Theatre
San Francisco

Nicole Claymoon from the Embodiment Project.

We are excited about the participation of Nicole Claymoon and the Embodiment Project in our annual
at Dance Mission on November 24th, 2012.

Artivists responding to Heal the Violence !!!

Master Drummers

Master Drummer Carolyn Brandy will shake our cores at
Guardianas de la Vida, November 24th, 2012 at Dance Mission
San Francisco.

Too often they have silenced us…

Yosimar Reyes, one of the most spectacular voices of his generation, will be stirring our Spirits on November 24th, 2012, at GUARDIANAS DE LA VIDA! Dance Mission Theater

Violence Against Women Increases 120% on TV

the normalization of violence

Women of white privilege are subject to violence as well.

Women of white privilege are subject to violence as well.

This is a call to all women of white privilege to step out of the closets of class, race and dogma. My prayer is that you may brake free from the traditions that keep you perpetuating genocide. I invite you to boycott “thanksgiving” on November 24 and 25th, 2012.

  Violence Ag…



Violence Against Women

The ACLU strives for a world in which women and girls live free from violence by challenging discrimination against survivors of violence in housing, employment, and education, and by holding governments accountable for responding to and taking proactive measures to stop the cycle of violence.

Domestic violence, sexual assault, and other forms of gender-based violence deprive women and girls of their fundamental ability to live with dignity. Women and girls experience domestic violence and sexual assault at alarming rates. Governments, institutions, laws, and policies contribute to the systematic devaluation of the lives and safety of women and girls by failing to respond to gender-based violence and discriminating against those subject to such violence. 


Accountability by the government, employers, landlords and others, as well as recognition that discrimination against survivors is a form of sex discrimination, are essential to enable women and girls to live lives free from violence.

 As a little girl from Kansas once said, “there’s no place like home,” and she was right. All of us may have a different notion of what “home” is, but ultimately we can agree home should be a place where we can feel comfortable and safe. Unfortunately for too many people who have experienced domestic violence, home isn’t safe. It is also regrettable that in many cases law enforcement officials, and in some cases our own government, have failed in their duty to protect the most vulnerable among us.

Arizona Law Says Choose Between Donations and Providing Care to Women (2011 blog): Just months after Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl made false and misleading statementsabout Planned Parenthood’s prenatal services, Arizona is once again attacking groups that provide abortion information or services. The latest scheme: A law to rewrite the tax code to exclude any nonprofit organization that provides abortion referrals or counseling from receiving donations through the state’s Working Poor Tax Credit Program. This law is so broad that it could prevent groups from even discussing abortion or other reproductive health services with women in crisis. In August 2011, we filed a lawsuit challenging that law.

Ending Domestic Violence Requires Holding Police Accountable (2011 blog): Are restraining orders just pieces of paper, or must the police take action when they are violated? This is the question raised by Valdez v. City of New York, a case challenging the failure of New York City police to enforce a domestic violence order of protection.

Valdez v. City of New York – Brief of Amici Curiae New York City Bar Association, American Civil Liberties Union et al. (2011 PDF)

Make My Case Count! (2011 blog)

Jessica Gonzales v. USA – IACHR Final Report (2011 PDF)




Campaña internacional para erradicar la violencia contra las mujeres y la niñas en el mundo.
Participa en tu comunidad.
como se desmantela el concepto de la violencia? atravez del arte, la sanacion integral, la cultura, la economia, la educacion y la politica?
comparte tus ideas en este espacio.

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