Myofascial Release in Voice and Contact Improvisation

Facilitated by: Nicole Bindler & Elissa Weinzimmer

August 2nd-4th, 2024


This Body-Mind Centering® retreat will offer an introduction to the fascial system through the practices of vocalization and contact improvisation. We will explore the principles and qualities of fascia, celebrate the connectivity in our bodies, and unwind myofascial tension. Deepening into the fascial system offers opportunities in partner dancing for more of a sense of continuity, weight modulation, and effortlessness in and out of the floor. Contacting the fascia also allows for more ease, fluidity, flow, and freedom in our voice. Additionally, we will explore the shadow of fascial work: scars. Most of us have some scar tissue in our bodies from old injuries or chronic holding patterns. These patterns show up in our speaking and dancing as sticky spots, places where sound or movement can’t travel directly through. At this retreat we will embrace our imperfections and idiosyncrasies, learn from the knowledge our bodies hold, and become better acquainted with ourselves and each other through moving and voicing together.

Who is it for?

All levels are welcome.

Sample Schedule

(Arrivals between 2-4pm)
4pm: Arrival / Registration
5pm: Opening circle
6pm: Dinner
8-10pm: Facilitated CI jam

9:30-11:30am: Voice class
12:30pm: Lunch
2:30-5:30pm: CI class
6:30pm: Dinner
8-10pm: Facilitated CI jam

9:30-11:30am: Voice class
12:30pm: Lunch
2:30-4:30pm: CI class
4:30pm: Closing circle
5:30pm: Departures

“Nicole intimately knows human movement from the inside out. Her skillful, caring application of that knowledge has not only helped me to reduce longstanding, nagging pains so I can help my clients more effectively, but has deeply increased my appreciation for my own body.”

–Jessica Newman, Movement Educator, Certified FELDENKRAIS practitioner

“I worked with Nicole in a dance improvisation workshop at Fundación El Ciclope, Córdoba. The workshop consisted of two days of intense work, which gave me important information for further investigation into my dance practice. I strongly recommend Nicole as a resident artist because she is a person who never stops searching and looking for new ways of moving, and most of all, she is a generous artist. I think it’s very rare to find a teacher who can share her knowledge, and is also open minded and willing to learn from others.”

–Griselda de Elejalde, Dance-Theater Artist, member of KAO performatic theater, Cordoba, Argentina

“Elissa is an excellent communicator – her explanations demystify the way your voice works, and take a logical and progressive journey that builds on your knowledge. I feel far more confident in my own voice and will continue to refer to many of Elissa’s examples and explanations because they explain the mind-body connection in an accessible way.”

–Rebecca Pannell, Music Educator

“Elissa is a master of bridging the very important connection between mind, body, and voice! And she teaches with soul because she is not only incredibly knowledgeable, but she’s passionate and interested in what she’s sharing. Her compassion makes her incredibly in-tune to what is going on with her students, so we can better understand how to use our voices in our performing and everyday life.”

–Joan Mann, Actor

About the Instructors

Nicole Bindler dance-maker, Body-Mind Centering® practitioner, writer, and activist–has practiced contact improvisation for 25 years. Her work has been supported by numerous grants and fellowships, and presented on four continents. Recent projects include curating an evening of Palestinian dance films; somatic research on the embryology of the genitalia from a non-binary perspective; a workshop on neuroqueering embodiment; co-producing the Consent Culture in Contact Improvisation Symposium; and a solo dance, The Case for Invagination, in which her scars speak candidly about trauma and desire. Upcoming engagements include co-editing a book, Gathering Sparks: Jewish Arts and Somatics, and contributing essays to the 2024 issue of BMC Currents, and the Embryo Book Project.

Elissa Weinzimmer is a singer-songwriter, somatic voice coach, and the founder of Voice Body Connection. After losing her own voice at age 21, Elissa began healing herself by studying the mechanics of voice, speech, and movement. Over the years through her courses and teaching, she has helped thousands of students to find their voice and speak (and sing) their truth. Elissa holds an MFA in Theatre Voice Pedagogy from the University of Alberta and certifications in Hatha yoga, Fitzmaurice Voicework® and Body-Mind Centering®. In 2014 she was the recipient of the Clyde Vinson Award for Excellence from the Voice and Speech Trainers Association.

Retreat Location

WildHeart is located on 46+ beautiful acres in the Hudson Valley. Retreatants will have the option to stay in a single room, double room, dorm, or camping in either our main retreat center or in private two-bedroom cabins. All options have access to shared kitchens and bathrooms. Daily events will take place in the studio, shared common spaces, and outdoors. Retreatants are welcome to enjoy the lawns, walk in the forest, and swim and boat in the lake during their stay! More info about directions and transportation options HERE.

A Note on Food

We are able to accommodate most diets. We serve meat and dairy daily, and always have vegan and gluten-free options available. If you send us your dietary preferences in advance, we will do our best to make sure there is good food for you at each meal! All living accommodations have access to a full kitchen (separate from the main/commercial kitchen). We will provide breakfast groceries for you to prepare and eat on your own. Lunches and dinners are communal shared meals. Drinks include: coffee and tea, dairy and non-dairy milk, lemon and lime juice for water, red and white wine.

Registration Costs

By offering a variety of housing options, and two free BIPOC spots, we hope to make this retreat financially accessible to all! Beyond that, please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you need financial assistance to attend:

These prices are all inclusive! You receive all retreat content and facilitation, housing, food and drinks, and access to the land, lake, and studio spaces.

Early Bird Price

Register by June 15th
$315 Dorm/ Camping
$375 Double
$450 Single

Standard Price

$365 Dorm/ Camping
$425 Double
$500 Single

Support Price

This price directly supports us to welcome folx who might not otherwise be able to attend, to come at a lower price.

BIPOC spots

We are offering 2 free spots for BIPOC folx. Please email to get the registration code for one of these spots.

Refund policy
In advance of 2 weeks – full refund (less the processing fee)
Within 2 weeks – no refund

Covid policy To protect the group, please don’t come if you have any symptoms of illness or had contact in the last 3 days with anyone who has COVID. We request everyone to self-test before arriving. 

Get Updates

Find out about WildHeart happenings!

Get Updates

Find out about WildHeart happenings!