Draw your way into the New Year!

Would you like to begin your new year in a fun, creative way? Have you ever wanted to get into drawing? Maybe you used to draw a lot and now everything is all done on computers and you feel removed? Want to get back to basics with pencil and paper? Do you want to develop a relaxing hobby? Do you need to develop storyboarding skills? Join our artist teacher and learn the rudiments of drawing in a chilled out group on Tuesday nights in Dublin city centre. This group will focus on line drawing, perspective, shading, still life and in true act the maggot vein will also have lots of fun drawing from the imagination. Click here if you want to read about our next beginners drawing course.
Five Good Reasons to take a drawing class.
1. Making art may reduce stress and anxiety.
2. Creating visual art improves connections in the brain.
3. Art making can help us get over sadness.
4. Mindless sketching can help focus.
5. Turning our problems into narratives can help us work through them.

If you want to read the full article on this subject click here

Act The Maggot to begin a new chapter!

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xmasAct The Maggot is thrilled to be starting a new chapter in our ever developing story! That’s right, we have found a brand new home at Chapterhouse on Middle Abbey Street, right in the heart of Dublin city centre. We look forward to opening the doors of No. 73 for our signature beginner courses in Acting, Creative Writing and Drawing all kicking off the last week of January 2018. We also plan to offer some new courses and one off workshops throughout the year. We will launch a 12-week course called The Artist’s Way and a 6-week course in Public Speaking. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and feel free to contact is at anytime with your queries. Until then, have a great festive season and a very happy new year.chapterhouse

‘Tis the season! What’s new with those maggots?

xmasCHRIMPROV: It’s all go here at Act The Maggot. The Christmas Party this year has been dubbed the ChrIMPROV!! We will host a free Improv session on Dec 7th followed by a few seasonal drinks. This is open to maggots from over the years. Come back! Say hi! Whip out your wackiest character and come have the craic with your old classmates – or meet some new maggots. There is no doubt you have all got something in common! Maggotology? Maggotiness? Maggotanaeity? Maggotificence? Whatever. Join us.
OTHER NEWS: Our current beginners’ acting class is in full swing. I hear this week they were massaging their vocal chords and rolling all over the floor in their Temple bar studio.  The things you do of Thursday, wha! SHOWCASE: Elsewhere in city centre, our Level 3 maggots are up to ninety putting the finishing touches to their scenes.  They have all been working really hard. Fourteen actors will star in seven different scenes in the Act The Maggot showcase on November 30th. Break a leg guys! That is sure to be a highly entertaining evening. And no doubt a few drinks will be had after to celebrate. CASTING INFO: There is an interesting Q&A session happening over in Smithfield on Monday night, Nov 27th with top dog casting director, Priscilla John. It’s free, so if you want to know more about the business from her point of view, get thee to eventbrite and sign up for it here. NEW COURSES: Booking has already begun on our 2018 courses, so get cracking  if you want to try your hand at beginners acting, creative writing or drawing. New Year, New You? Go for it guys. You won’t regret it. We are delivering another of our regular introduction to Mindfulness workshops in Rathmines this weekend and Act The Maggot is thrilled to announce it’s new venture with Elavon Financial Services – bringing Mindfulness to the corporate sector to their offices in Cherrywood, Dublin and Arklow. That’s all for now folks! Looking forward to a calm December!!!

Drawing is so much fun!

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All sorts of wonderful drawing came out of our recent Beginner’s Drawing class in Rathmines. It’s so much fun learning to make art using just pencils, charcoal and the odd coloured pencil or marker! Such a relaxing way to spend a … Continue reading

DCU Recovery College

Yesterday, I received this beautiful sunflower from my students and one of them brought in this poem by Mary Oliver which I asked her to read aloud for us.

Come with me
into the field of sunflowers.
Their faces are burnished disks,
their dry spines
creak like ship masts,
their green leaves,
so heavy and many,
fill all day with the sticky
sugars of the sun.
Come with me
to visit the sunflowers,
they are shy
but want to be friends;
they have wonderful stories
of when they were young –
the important weather,
the wandering crows.
Don’t be afraid
to ask them questions!
Their bright faces,
which follow the sun,
will listen, and all
those rows of seeds –
each one a new life!
hope for a deeper acquaintance;
each of them, though it stands
in a crowd of many,
like a separate universe,
is lonely, the long work
of turning their lives
into a celebration
is not easy. Come
and let us talk with those modest faces,
the simple garments of leaves,
the coarse roots in the earth
so uprightly burning.

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It was so appropriate for our group. I finished facilitating an experimental course with them where they played with drama, movement and creative writing and last week, I finished a drama course in Navan for the same organisation. Recovery College is a new venture and for me, working with them – has been an enriching, enlightening and very rewarding experience. I was given free reign to do what I do – design and facilitate course modules that are useful and empowering for adults working on their own recovery from mental health distress. It is encouraging to see people smile and have fun and feel safe while exploring their creativity despite what life has thrown at them. The power and support in these groups is inspiring. I wish them all the very best. Many thanks to the tireless efforts of Recovery College who are working so hard to provide much needed peer-led courses in this area. If you have an interest in mental health, work in mental health or have had mental health distress in your life, contact them and see if what they are offering this Autumn is up your alley. Most of the courses are on during the day.

If I had my life to live over again?

thisisitWorth pondering over these thoughts from 85-year old Nadine Stair when she was asked this very question.

If I had my life to live over again,
I’d dare to make more mistakes next time.
I’d relax.
I’d limber up.
I’d be sillier than I’ve been this trip.
I would take fewer things seriously.
I would take more chances,
I would eat more ice cream and less beans.
I would, perhaps, have more actual troubles but fewer imaginary ones.
you see, I’m one of those people who was sensible and sane,
hour after hour,
day after day.

Oh, I’ve had my moments.
If I had to do it over again,
I’d have more of them.
In fact, I’d try to have nothing else- just moments,
one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of each day.
I’ve been one of those persons who never goes anywhere without a thermometer, a hot-water bottle, a raincoat, and a parachute.
If I could do it again, I would travel lighter than I have.

If I had to live my life over,
I would start barefoot earlier in the spring
and stay that way later in the fall.
I would go to more dances,
I would ride more merry-go-rounds,
I would pick more daisies.

– Nadine Stair

Also worth having a read of what Mrs. Mindfulness has to say about slowing down. She thinks we all ought to hurry up and slow down!

Charlie Chaplin’s poetry

screen-shot-2017-06-08-at-11-52-33Gifted comic, dancer, actor, writer, filmmaker, director and so much more. He even began the first union for artists in Hollywood!. Not many of us know that Charlie Chaplin wrote poetry as well as all of his other talents. Have a read here of his amazing poem on self love.

Learning to Draw is so much fun and more relaxing than we realised

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screen-shot-2017-05-31-at-09-46-44We had such a great time in the Beginners Drawing class. So sad it is over. What a lovely relaxing time of a Tuesday. This is one hobby worth keeping. Next course will be in September. For more information about this contact us at actthemaggot@gmail.com #drawing #art #mindfulness #relaxation #perspective #humans

The skinny on “this thing called Mindfulness” from Ruby Wax

rubywaxWhile out and about in Dublin town last week, Act The Maggot got to meet the amazing comedian #RubyWax at her one-woman show #Frazzled at the O’Reilly Theatre in Belvedere College. Her book, of the same name, is definitely worth a read. Lots of laugh-out-loud sections. In all good bookstores now. She has a very entertaining take on the whole reason we need to factor daily meditation into our lives. It is based on her own personal experience. If you are interested in this subject, why not come along to one of our introductory Mind Yourself workshops. Take a look at the testimonials and decide for yourself. In the meantime, namaste!

New testimonials on Mind Yourself workshop

shouldersThanks to all the participants who came along yesterday to the introductory workshop in mindfulness meditation. Take a look at some of their comments.

“Amy offered great tips and quick exercises to move you towards Zen in minutes. I learned meditation can be easy and accessible to everyone. Time very well spent.”

“I really enjoyed this course. It’s a great introduction to the fundamental concepts and practice of mindfulness, or as in my case, a refresher course, having done a bit of it years ago. Amy is very professional, warm and informative and makes it all very accessible. I feel like I can make a real start on this based on the course and the suggested reading and research materials. I’d certainly recommend it.”

“I really enjoyed Amy’s approach to meditating. She was extremely informative but made it seem practical and also fun. She gave great references and we did a wide variety of excerises so everyone felt they could at least adopt something at home. I’d highly recommend this class to anyone who is looking for an introduction to meditating.”