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Symbiosis Gathering Announces Performance Artist Line Up

Symbiosis Gathering 2016: Family Tree is returning for a final time to Woodward Reservoir this September. The Breaking Borders team is excited to announce we will be returning to cover this transformative experience now in it’s 11th  year.

One of the most impressive attractions of Symbiosis Gathering 2015 was its performance art. With only a month left until the next Gathering, Symbiosis producers have announced their most outstanding performance artist line up yet.

Attendees will find circus and dance troupes like Vau de Vire Society, Wanderlust Circus and Flynn Creek Circus performing near the stages this year. Performing in conjunction with the music, they are known for their acrobatics, wild tumbling and costumed theatrics. The fire twirling antics of these and other performing acts are bound to amaze onlooking attendees.

Wandering Symbiosis attendees will also be able to find a number of musical performances involving comedy, poetry, spoken word and open mics as well. The beatboxing Fungineers and the high flying Rose-City Acro Devils are an act we don’t want to miss.

Lastly, we look forward to the mind-bending live painting and installation art. Headlined by Android Jones, the live painting and mobile galleries are sure to have participants staring for hours.

More on the performances can be found here.

Symbiosis also just announced its Elemental Alchemy line up here.

Look forward to our upcoming music preview next month!

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Enchanted Forest Gathering: Menodino’s Hidden Gem

Last month, the Breaking Borders team ventured deep into the heart of Mendocino county to get the full Northern California transformational music festival experience at Enchanted Forest Gathering.

Now in its 6th year, Enchanted Forest Gathering has perfected the art of creating an environment for healing and expression. Enchanted Forest impressively maintains a family-style community while bringing in countless world class performers and state of the art production quality.

Ethos

Enchanted Forest is its very own brand of transformational music festival. Tucked away in a hidden valley, this festival encapsulated the spirit of the Nor Cal region. Kind and inviting, there was a focus on getting weird without judgment.

Colorful patterns abound, organic food stands dotted the forested river valley, while small temples were scattered throughout the campground designed for yoga and workshops. The scent of palo santo and redwood soaked the air. And vibrations of ground-shaking bass could be felt throughout camp. All senses were engaged for this gathering.

Microenvironments

To become an enchanted forest, Black Oak Ranch was filled with not just a couple stages, but dozens of microenvironements.

Small tented areas like the pillow-filled Nectar Temple offered an occasional break from the action. The bass-infused Saucy Spa served as communal showers by day and hosted after-hour DJ sets deep into the night.

Kidslandia provided a safe space for the little ones and encouraged a family atmosphere. The Branches Art Gallery was a home base for dozens of psychedelic artists. Kombucha stations instead of bars encouraged revitalization instead of intoxication. And on site marijuana dispensaries supported an environment for herbal healing.

Yoga was also a staple of Enchanted Forest. The wildly popular Yoga of Bass class even incorporated the main stage’s booming Function One speakers into it’s upbeat yoga routine!

Music

The long hot days were spent chilling by the Swimmin’ Hole stage. Most participants lounged in the small river next to the stage, taking in the liquid bass tunes of SOOHAN, SaQi, Autograf and others. Around nightfall, the crowd would add layers and wander over to the Mighty Oak Stage.

The Oak stage, Enchanted Forest’s centerpiece, had arguably the most impressive stage production we’ve even seen. Audiowaska’s creation combined carved wood and projection mapped visuals with artistic metal work and live flowers. The complimentary glow of twirling fire and mesmerizing lasers glued antendees to it late into the night.

Friday night featured variations of psychedelic trap thanks to PantryRaid and Clozee. Day two saw the stage lit up again with the earthy bass of Love and Light and Nominus, and the genreless headliners, Shpongle and The Polish Ambassador.

With just a few thousand participants, Enchanted Forest felt like a hidden gem – a secret festival specifically designed for the Mendocino community. Rarely is a festival able to combine such world class production with such an intimate and natural environment. Because of this, Enchanted Forest hardly felt like a world renowned festival, but more so a small gathering of old friends getting together to dance.

 

Lightning in a Bottle

Intro by Rourke Healey. Photos by Nick Neumann.


Over Memorial Day Weekend the Breaking Borders team kicked off the festival season by trekking down to Bradly, CA to experience Lightning in A Bottle. Taking place on the shores of a dry lakebed half way between San Francisco and Los Angeles, LIB is one of California’s premiere transformational music festivals.

This year marks Breaking Borders 4th LIB, giving us the chance to reflect on how far LIB has come and how it has kept the magic that makes it special.

For the uninitiated LIB blends the musical attractions of Coachella with the DIY spirit of Burning Man. Veteran burners with U-hauls and sprawling encampments party next weathered hippies and bros camping in their pick up trucks. Yoga enthusiasts wake up early to attend crowded classes, while house heads stumble back to camp after long nights of dancing. More than anything LIB is filled with good-looking weird people that enjoy being themselves.

At LIB there isn’t one party. For those that need to dance, the music goes all night. For the early birds that wake at sunrise for yoga, it is there. And for some, they can do it all. Yogis acknowledge their hungover participants on Saturday morning, but withhold judgment. An unconscious cloud of acceptance surrounds the entire experience.

This was LIB’s third gathering at Lake San Antonio and its largest edition since it started 16 years ago in Los Angeles. With more people came larger crowds and more traffic, but somehow the energy and feeling of a small community remained. It seems LIB has learned how to sell out without selling out.

As it grows, the spirit of LIB evolves and spreads with it. LIB effortlessly teaches newcomers how to join the vibe as it overwhelms them, consuming each with positivity, and gently forcing them to participate. The bridges were a constant chain of high fives, the campsites a breeding grounds for sharing, and the inviting nature of strangers everpresent.

The DO LaB has a knack for bringing in music you didn’t know you loved. Each stage has a distinct sound and energy – the Woogie is a house lover’s heaven; the Thunder stage is LIB’s home of bass. Watching the crowd glow to Lee Burridge’s sunset set at the Woogie on Sunday you could feel the DO LaB’s dedication to finding artists that fit each stages personality.

Highlights from the Thunder stage included the Desert Dwellers extravagant live experience, Tokimosta’s genre-less remixes and The Polish Ambassadors liquid grooves. The Lightning stage hosted many of the live ‘headliners’ this year, from Grimes to Chet Faker’s closing set. It was a hotspot for late afternoon tunes as well with Marian Hill and Lafa Taylor getting the crowd into it. And of course, the Woogie kept on doing its thing, even with a few edits to the fabled treehouse. Each day the Woogie got started early with the help of Dirtybird’s own Sascha Robotti and Justin Jay. The booty-shaking bass didn’t slow down much all weekend thanks to andhim, Four Tet and Guy Gerber’s closing late Sunday.

The LIB ethos encourages all to reflect, rejuvenate, and celebrate (and dance). By Sunday evening it seems those who got lost have been found, those experiencing LIB with love ones have grown closer and those entering alone have found a family.

Unlike other festivals you won’t find people pouring over set times or rushing to stages. Instead people wander about, popping into a particularly lively cooking lesson, pausing at the subtly profound live painting, popping into the Favela Bar for a dance party or slowing down to walk with a new friend they’ve made.

For half a century California has made itself home to conscientious hedonism. Now, in this new age of festivals, LIB sets itself apart as a worthwhile pilgrimage. Filling the golden hills with beautiful sounds and an inclusive spirit, LIB will remind you of the power of human creativity and your own self worth.

Exploring Marrakesh

Top 6 Places to Visit in Marrakech

by Alison Stone


Marrakesh or Marrakech, meaning Land of God, is a city lying in the North-Western African nation Morocco. The city is divided into two sections called Medina and Gueliz. The city has a large number of historical sites and museums for tourists and even locals to visit. The thing about Medina is that you can reach a lot of places on foot, even though the walk is long, you do not have to worry about paying for transport. So, if you decide to spend your vacations in this beautiful city, here are some places you might want to consider visiting:

Koutoubia Masjid

  1. Koutoubia Masjid

The Masjid is the symbol of Marrakech. This place is as important as the Eifel Tower is to Paris. It is right beside Djemaa El-Fna and is named after the booksellers market that was once located there. It is still used for prayers and non-Muslims are not allowed to enter but they can see it from the outside. It was built following the themes of the Almohad and topped with four copper globes.Marrakech Souks

  1. Shopping At Souks

This is the most popular market place of the Marrakech. All you just need is to name an item and you will find it at really affordable rates if you are a local. If you are a foreigner, then they will probably demand more so do not forget to bargain with them. Secondly, if you run out of local currency, then you will find merchants willing to accept the equivalent amount in dollars. Its located north of Jemaa El-Fna.Maison Tiskiwin

  1. Maison Tiskiwin

Maison Tiskiwin is a big chunk of private property under the name of a veteran Dutch anthropologist. The house is decorated by arts and crafts that have been collected from South Morocco and Sahara. The tour is basically a walk through the different countries from the Tunisia to Timbuktu. The entry is not free but it is still really cheap. Saadian Tombs

  1. Saadian Tombs

The Saadian Tombs were discovered pretty late, around the turn of 20th century. They are located near the Kasbah masjid which is extremely popular among the visitors. If you visit the tombs, then you would always find a large crowd so be prepared to stand in line for a while. You will also find tombs of Jews and Christians. There is a small entry fee here as well. Bahia Palace

  1. Bahia Palace

The palace offers a proper tour by providing you with a guide on your visit. Those who want to experience the life of a 19th century nobleman would definitely find this an ideal stop. The exterior is decorated with a big garden containing a large number of beautiful flowers and fruit plants. There are usually very few people gathered at the Palace so you have the freedom to roam around without bumping into people. Majorelle Gardens

  1. Majorelle Gardens

While Majorelle Gardens are breathtaking and consists of unique plants and vegetation, it is also a bit overpriced when you compare it with all the other great places you can visit in Marrakech. But, nonetheless, it is a great place to run off to find peace when the city becomes too overbearing. There is a café and a museum in the gardens, and there is a gift shop at the end which also contains 100 year old photographs among other things.

At the end of the day when you are too tired, you would find a lot of exquisite hotels to rest up in. Some of which include Riad El Fenn, Jnane Tamsna, Peacock Pavilions, etc. Enjoy your trip to Marrakech and do not forget to pay a visit to all the above mentioned neighborhoods while you are there.

Author Bio: Alison works at Dissertation cube where she provides dissertation writing help to students. In spare time she writes blogs for students starting their career and for those who are still in jobs. Find her on Google+.

A Gathering for the Ages

Symbiosis Gathering

Photos by Nick Neumann.  Intro by Rourke Healey


Symbiosis Gathering is a transformational music and art festival held in California.  With headliners from Emancipator to Tipper it was truly one of the most impressive psychedelic dance parties imaginable. Over four days, 15,000 people from all walks of life came together to get weird.

Symbiosis could not be described better than a collection of people doing the absolute most. The effort and passion that was put into Symbiosis shined through best in the stages and art installations.

It was not the art, structures or music alone that make Symbiois Gathering, but also the people. The ones who wander into camp to roll J’s, paint faces or offer drinks. The people that introduce themselves to whoever they sit next to. The hilarious porto-potty conversations. The people that compliment you. The ones that invite rather than exclude. The ones that glow and express themselves to the fullest. It was hard to find a soul that wasn’t dancing, content or caring for others. And it was your one job, as a participant, to return the favor to everyone around you.

What ever Symbiosis participants did, they seemed to do it with the most effort. From costume dress up to unique dancing. Indulgence, though wildly abundant, was second to experience and contribution. With DIY and interactive art, participants felt as much a contributor as event promoters.

This phenomenon seems part of a growing trend of west coast events that uniformly lack authority, encourage individualism and offer nothing but good vibes. Spawned from the ideals of Burning Man, Symbiosis participants are allegoric to confrontation and refuse to judge. With some of the same art and many of the same faces, Symbiosis felt much like it’s sister festival, Lightning In a Bottle. The two events appeared coordinated in their defiance against mainstream festival values such as consumption and documentation.

The wave of these ‘be yourself’ festivals is a beautiful thing. But what makes this truly special is that there is nowhere else in the world like this. Nowhere can you escape for four days to a lake with thumping music, insanely expressive and welcoming people and be free from expectations like this. Not even the east coast of the U.S. can match this. Its almost like California is making a statement: We are California and we are going to party exactly how we want to.

Thank you Symbiosis Gathering. See you next time for the Eclipse.

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