Image by Suzanne D. Williams

Next-stage Projects 

These projects are those that have already been seeded, and are in a stage of becoming where it is "visible" in some form, whether as a seedling pushing up from the underground, or as a fully flowered project. It may need funding to get it out in the world, or recorded, or the script finished, or an event that just needs some final shaping. These projects may need some collaboration, but mostly are close to finished.

For those of you blessed with abundance who would like to support this work, please know your donation extends good will out into the world, empowers important projects to come into being, and circles back around to you as sacred reciprocity. 

If you have a project you've been working on and have hit a wall - you need some funding, maybe a bit of mentoring or collaboration to finish - get in touch with us! Priority is given to projects that bridge the edges between dominant culture and what is emergent, and those on the edges due to race, gender, spiritual tradition (or non-tradition), or divergent world view. Fill out our online form and we'll be in touch! 

 Next-stage Projects Supported by CAHS

No Feeling is Final 

The Film
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No Feeling is Final was an already-in-motion film project written by and featuring Ted Swartz. When it became a project of CAHS, Ted was enabled to work with director Michelle Milne, videographer Steven Stauffer, and sound and lighting crew at Goshen Theater in Goshen, IN. 

No Feeling is Final is a powerful and humorous film, originally to be a live presentation of a book, was filmed on an empty stage during the disorientation of a global pandemic. A pilgrimage of sorts, through Ted's past and into the present, with stories from audience members and tour crew, the film is filled with insight into lives shaped by mental disorders, suicide, the healing nature of storytelling and community, grief and loss, endings, resilience, and forgiveness. 

 

The film is based on the book, Portraits From the Human Faces Tour, which was based on the tour of the play, Laughter is Sacred Space, based on another book by the same title, based on a friendship. Viewers witness the movement of creativity and shared stories over time that ripple out from the complexity and love embedded in human relationship. A story that gathers others along the way, into the sacred dimensions of what life is all about. 

No Feeling is Final

The StoryGuide

This StoryGuide is being developed by Valerie Luna Serrels to accompany the film by the same title, for groups, including schools, churches, and mental health organizations, as a way for viewers to reflect on their own story as they explore the film. With journal prompts and suggested shared mindfulness and meditation practices, the StoryGuide will lead participants deeper into their own lived experience as a sacred journey, as they walk with Ted through his.

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Nohemy Ruth Garcia Soria

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Tattered & Worn and So We Pray
Dejas Ajado Mi Ser and Es Mi Oracion Para

Song recordings by Jeff Raught and Nohemy Ruth Garcia Soria

Musician/singer, Jeff Raught, shares that whenever we translate into a language we understand, he's wondered how much the meanings change. Especially when we translate songs into what is our American English. He thought about what it would be like to go the other way, since he has a love of hearing people speak or sing in their native language, even if it's not understood. CAHS enabled Jeff to explore this idea. 

Jeff had previously worked with Nohemy Garcia when she recorded two of Jeff's songs in 2015. This time around, it was her skill at translating Jeff's lyrics into phrases and words that her people would understand. As Jeff explains, "The opening lyric in Tattered and Worn is: 
"I've got mixed feelings. I'm upside down, can't seem to find my way."

 

"Nohemy explained to me doing a literal translation would have been silly as any Spaniard would wonder why you are upside down. Surely that won't solve anything! So she was intentional and deliberate in massaging the meaning into phrases that would make sense after translating." 

Nohemy took the original tracks from 2015 into the studio and recorded new vocals in Spanish. Jeff shares, "It was notable in hearing how different she sang the language of her birth to one she learned later. My hope is that having these two songs in both will be another way of communicating. In both languages she did some marvelous work in giving these songs life. Her voice and the person she is has elevated these songs into something beyond what I might have imagined when I wrote them all those years ago."

Jeff Raught

To listen and download the songs and to support Jeff's work, check out his website!

To hear more of Nohemy's music and support her work, visit her Bandcamp page!

Portraits From the Human Faces Tour: Mental Health Struggles and Resilience

By Ted Swartz with Valerie Luna Serrels; photos and book design by Steven Stauffer

This book was published by Ted & Company Theaterworks in 2020, emerging from a previous tour of the play, Laughter Is Sacred Space. The volume presents the faces and stories of  people across North America who attended performances of the play, during what was dubbed the Human Faces Tour. Playwright and actor, Ted Swartz, wrote the play as part of his artistic journey in search of healing after losing his best friend and theater partner to suicide in 2007. 

Portraits invites readers to reflect on their own stories related to mental health and their own wholeness, as well as reduce the stigmatism around mental illness. In 2021, we raised $8800 to send 250 copies of the book to libraries in prisons and jails in Virginia. Our hope is that the books find their way into the hands and hearts that need to connect with others, even if through stories, to know they are not alone in some of their struggles. 

The book can be purchased at the Ted & Company TheaterWorks website. 

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