Mini symposium Breathing as a tool in the performing arts

We breathe over 21 000 times a day. How we breathe has a great effect on our mental and physical health. This mini symposium highlights breathing in relation to training, recovery and performance.

The role of breathing in mental and physical health in elite sports has often been researched often.  What can performing artists learn from the outcomes of that research? What are the effects of breathing for body and mind while training and or in preparation for performance?

Our key note speakers with backgrounds in sports, mental health and the performing arts will share their research and practices. The evening consists of presentations, an interactive practice moment and dialogue.

Bram Bakker (NL), psychiatrist and runner, conducted research with sports physiologist Koen de Jong on breathing in relation to training, recovery and sustainable performance in sports. The research states the interrelation between healthy breathing, mental fitness and enhanced performance.  Bakker will share insights on the outcomes of this research and touch upon the applicability for performing artists.

Musician Raf de Groote (BE) Discovered music at the age of 16 and studied at the conservatories of Antwerp, Brussels and Ghent and graduated in flute, chamber music and Pedagogy. He took master classes with Susan Milan and Geoffrey Gilbert and played for at the Philharmonie Orchestra, Belgian Chamber Orchestra, Muntschouwburg Brussels. He teaches flute and chamber music at the Music Academy Zoltan Kodaly in Wijnegem (Antwerp). After personal problems as a musician de Groote started to investigate and combine techniques to enhance awareness on the interrelated effect of body and mind through breathing. He now for many years coaches and teaches Body, Mind & Music programs and Breathing courses for singers and for the private sector (Fit for the Office program).
He combines Alexander technique, the Franklin method and Feldenkrais in how to use breathing as a tool in performing. Awareness and self-management are important focusses in his training programs.

Patricia Bardi (USA) is an Amsterdam based dance voice artist, improvisational performer, choreographer and bodywork specialist.  She is the founder/ director of the Vocal Dance and Voice Movement Integration (VMI) Somatic Practice Certification Program. For over 30 years, Bardi has developed her approach to Vocal Dance & experiential composition in live performance actively combining movement, extended voice & language. Voice travels on our breath rhythm and awakens the whole body. Bardi has developed the Active Breath practice which is a series of guided movement sequences that combine breath, movement & sound to tune into the body and bring perceptual awareness into an active connection integrating breath, body & voice.

The mini symposium is the 3rd activity NCPA organises with partner ArtEZ Conservatoire, department Health and Music. The evening will be Dutch and English spoken.

April 11 2016. 19.00 hrs – 21.00 hrs. (doors open at 18.30 hrs)

Deventer Schouwburg, Leeuwenburg 2, Deventer
The Deventer Schouwburg is very accessible by public transport, and is located across Deventer Central Station and the bus station. There are good parking options. The Centrum Garage behind the HEMA costs 50 eurocents after 19.00 hrs.

Registration is possible by sending your contact details to
The entrance fee is 20 euros and for students there is a special discount prize of 5 euros. (student card number required) Individual NCPA supporters have free access.  Staff of ArtEZ Conservatoire have free acces (by use of the scholingsbudget) and need to register through


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