The Life of Breath: History, Texts, Contexts

10-12 July 2018, Durham Breathing is a basic physiological process, yet also has deep cultural, spiritual and personal meaning. However, although breath and breathing are such resonant and urgent subjects, they have never been the subject of systematic cultural or … Read more…

Beckett, The Breath and The Choreographic

Wed 21 Feb, Durham “Grace to breathe that void. Know happiness” (“Ill Seen Ill Said”, 1981). Unusually for Samuel Beckett, the final declaration of this short prose work gestures to a positive closure. However, the simple directive is preceded by … Read more…

Breath in Choral Singing

Mon 29 Jan, Durham The fourth event of the Arts of Breath series will be practical lecture-workshop conducted by Julian Wright in the form of an open rehearsal with the Durham Singers to consider the place of breathing in choral singing. … Read more…

Breath in Vocal Technique

Wed 17 Jan, Durham The third event of the Arts of Breath series will be practical lecture-workshop conducted by classical singing teacher Miranda Wright with some of her regular vocal students to illustrate the place of trained breathing in vocal technique. Breathing technique … Read more…

Breath & Puppet

Header image: “Baby at Play” by Thomas Eakins, 1876. Puppeteer Chris Pirie recently spoke at our Gasp! Exploring Breath through Creative Arts event (part of the Being Human festival). He writes: I have been focusing on my breath, and whilst … Read more…

Visualising the Ephemeral: Breath in Visual Art

Wed 29 Nov, Durham In the second event of the Arts of Breath series, Jayne Wilton will be exploring breath in visual art. ‘Art changes human experience as it reorders our perceptions and engages our emotions’ (Gabrielle Starr, ‘Feeling Beauty: The … Read more…

Raptures of the Deep (Freediving Film Night)

Free diving

23 November 2017, Durham Free-divers can seem like super humans. They have extraordinary, seemingly implausible, control over their bodies, particularly their breathing, and offer a fascinating insight into the connection between mind and body. A series of short films featuring … Read more…

Dear Breath! Creative Writing Workshop

19 Nov 2017, Bristol Join Elspeth Penny, an arts and health specialist interested in using creative approaches to living well with breathlessness, Dr Alice Malpass from the Wellcome Trust funded Life of Breath project and Louise Jenkins, an artist who … Read more…

Arts of Breath

Various dates 2017/18, Durham Arts of Breath is a series of lecture-performances exploring the role of breath in poetry, fiction, singing, dance and visual art. For more information see individual event pages or contact sarah.mclusky@durham.ac.uk  Please also contact Sarah if you could … Read more…

Curious about breath at the Oxford Curiosity Carnival

Music therapist and writer Kate Binnie writes:  Friday 29th September saw Oxford’s City Centre transformed by the Curiosity Carnival. This University-organised event sought to bring together researchers across fields of study to share knowledge, answer questions, and interact in creative ways with … Read more…

Lost in Translation? Exploring the language of breathlessness

Sponge

Life of Breath post-doctoral researcher Rebecca Oxley writes: ‘Breath Lab’ is designed as a living experiment to promote discussion around a central theme relating to breath, breathing and breathlessness. The aim is not to discuss key research findings, but rather … Read more…

The Last Breath

25 August 2017, Edinburgh VISIONS OF THE FUTURE: A GOOD DEATH Over 50% of people say they want to die at home, yet most of us will still die in hospital. What is our relationship with death as it becomes … Read more…

The Sound of Breath

24 August 2017, Edinburgh THE BREATH IN SONG AND POETRY How do poets and composers think about breath? The pause in a line or the length of the note impacts greatly on how an audience hears, connects with and interprets … Read more…

An Encyclopaedia of Breath

19-20 August 2017, Edinburgh Feeling ‘peched oot’ from rushing around the Festival? Pause for a lungful and help Sarah McLusky and Mary Robson create an illuminated encyclopaedia exploring the language and history of breath and air. Contribute your words, definitions, … Read more…

A World of Sighs

13 August 2017, Edinburgh FROM POETRY TO PRAYER Seen historically as a way of maintaining a healthy body and mind through the expelling of melancholy, sighing is now fertile ground for psychologists to assess a person’s emotional state. For a … Read more…

On Breath Conference

6-9 Jul 2017, Utrecht Deadline for proposals: 31 August 2016 Arthur Rose (Durham University) and Stefanie Heine (University of Toronto), are organising ‘On Breath’ on behalf of the American Comparative Literature Association. Questions they hope to address include, but are not restricted … Read more…