September 17, 2012

Photo essay: Downward dogs en masse at Whistler’s Wanderlust Festival. ~ Ian McKenzie

Sunset from the peak of Whistler.

First held in 2009, the Wanderlust Festival has now expanded to multiple locations across the US and Canada. This year was the first time it was held in Whistler, BC.

I was tasked with shooting the event, and finding time to actually practice my yoga. The four days were a whirlwind of downward dogs, provocative talks, yoga pants, and solid music acts, including Thievery Corporation and Michael Franti.

A video series is soon to come but, for now, enjoy the pictures.

Ambient guitarist Peter Jack Rainbird serenades the crowds at Wanderlust. The weekend was filled with numerous musicians, dancers, and performances in the streets.

Of the many classes offered at Wanderlust, Shakti Sunfire teaches students the moves of hoop dance.

Inside the various venues, students sweat and flow. Teachers from all over North America offer their unique flavour of yoga.

Various panels were held at the “Speakeasy,” including this one on the ethics of the student / teacher relationship. Here, AcroYogi Jason Nemer shares a story with the audience.

Janet Stone tells the tale of Hanuman, the Hindu deity, during her class in “The Nest” inside the Whistler Conference Center.

DJ Drez spins live music to Janet Stone’s class. Many of the classes had live musicians or DJs as a complement to the yoga.

Yoga teacher Nico Luce instructs his class on the outdoor stage in the Whistler Olympic Plaza.

The event hosted various acts, from Thievery Corporation to Quixotic. Here, MC Yogi and Kirtan legend Krishna Das share the stage together.

The audience approves.

Friday night included a massive outdoor yoga class, beautifully conducted by yoga mainstay Seane Corn, accompanied by the infectious music of Michael Franti.

One of the most popular teachers in North America, Seane Corn is a master of her craft and an inspiration to the crowd.

The yoga class / inspirational concert ends with the crowd in a frenzy. The collective energy was tangible.

Michael Franti serenades the crowd with his signature melodies.

Saturday night is packed for the headliner, Michael Franti. With the weather holding clear, and the moon peeking over the stage, it was a fitting night for a weekend of spiritual practice and celebration.

Ian MacKenzie is a filmmaker and media activist from Vancouver, BC.  He is co-producer of the upcoming feature documentary Occupy Love, directed by Velcrow Ripper.




Editor: Elysha Anderson

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