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Photo: Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

It’s about this time, just a week before giving birth to my second child, that I feel the need to follow up on my first post about the Berlin Yoga Conference.

In that first entry, I summarized the context from which the project was born: the Berlin Yoga Conference was born out of a clear set of values and goals for an annual international yoga event, managed ethically along the social responsibility principles, with an aim to educate, inspire, and amaze the public, to grow the local and international yoga communities, and to expand on the industry networks.

In this post, I would like to focus (as the very ambitious title suggest) on why I think this project is going to succeed and turn into Europe’s most awaited-for yoga event. Instead of focusing on the high-quality content, the outstanding programming, or the very cool venue in Europe’s hottest city, I want to speak about the heart of the hearts: the amazing, talented, lovely, supportive, and dedicated people who are a part of it.

At its core, the Berlin Yoga Conference started with a group of yoga teachers who agreed to become the presenting team behind the 2019 edition. These teachers, being well-known and well-respected locally and internationally, all have years and years of experience and expertise behind them, leading busy lives managing yoga studios, teacher trainings, yoga workshops and retreats, writing books and articles, traveling extensively between yoga conferences and festivals around the world. These teachers put their trust into the project, booked the dates in their busy schedules, and have been very supportive and nourishing to the project ever since. I want to take a moment to thank each one of them, their names in alphabetical order:

Ambra, Andrea L, Andrea S, Annika, Christine, Jang-Ho, Jennie, Johanna, Katharina, Lalit, Katja, Nina, Olga, Olivia, Ralf, Ranja, Patrick, Sat Bir, Simon, and Tanja.

Around this core, Berlin Yoga Conference’s team has been expanded to a fantastic designer & artistic director Alina, working closely together with a great programmer Katrin, with two amazing yoga and body arts photographers Alessandro and Axel engaged in the frames of the Berlin Yoga Conference 2019 and its various Pop-Up events, with the latest addition in the field of project assistance – Sophie. All of these people are not only very talented in their respective fields, but are also very kind, honest individuals, professional, hard-working, and dedicated to the project.

By the end of January, the presenting artists list has been finalized, featuring extraordinary musicians and performers who no doubt will deliver remarkable moments and memories to the Berlin Yoga Conference 2019 audience. Yann and Tanja, of their still very new and fresh Djaya Project, will provide a mixture of yin yoga and active meditation to the melodies and rhythms from the various Eastern spiritual traditions. Ohad, Ria, and Anastasia (me) will expose the audience to the unique criss-cross between classical music and yoga, with a world premier of Ohad’s new composition “Meditations” for piano, marimba, and harp. Tracy Jane Sallivan will visit some yoga classes with her “Healing Harp” sounds, infusing them with the harp’s health-giving vibrations. Meanwhile Guy will deliver a whole program of original electronic compositions making use of his modular synthesizer, alone and in collaboration with live piano.

Organizations are made of people, and so in that regard, Berlin Yoga Conference is extremely proud and honored to work with the extraordinary individuals (Rob, Kate, Dieter and Isabelle) behind the three nonprofit organizations (Give Back Yoga, Purple Dot Yoga Project, and Y.u.M.i.G), who actively work on empowering their local, national, and international communities, spreading the ideals of social responsibility and giving-back in the context of yoga, empowering individuals who come from underprivileged background and a history of trauma and/or abuse.

Also, I want to tell you about all of the amazing journalists and bloggers who took interest in the project and helped in spreading the first news about it. Albeit so early on, almost a year and a half in advance before the Berlin Yoga Conference actually takes place (May 24-26, 2019), these women (yes, they are all women) prepared features about the project, each one approaching it from a unique perspective and angle. Special words of gratitude to Sunita from Yogareich, Linda from Yogobe, Melanie from we.love.yoga, Sophie from the Yogi Times, Melanie from Ganzwunderbar, and Bec from Plume Yoga.

As you can see, Berlin Yoga Conference is made possible thanks to the initial core group of individuals who envisioned it, believed in it, and decided to support it. The amazing thing about it, is that the group of supporters and individuals who want to help out just keeps on growing! There are yoga teachers who offer their services on the voluntary basis, there are yoga studio owners and brands who want to partner up and collaborate, and there are countless yogis from different places around the world who join the Berlin Yoga Conference community on a daily basis.

As a founder and organizer of the project, I am so humbled, thankful and impressed by the way the project develops, and I can tell it is going to be a huge success! Reason behind it: I have people like you who are interested, who are excited, who offer to help and support, who commit, and who spread the news to others, so that others can follow your lead. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH! <3

P. S. Happy Valentine’s Day!