Hailing from Terrace, Northern British Columbia, Canada; home of the Kermode Bear, the only albino black bear in the world – Nolita found her appreciation for natural beauty, serenity and bliss while growing up amongst the forests, ocean and mountains. Just as the Kermode Bear is a rare gem of this area, so too is Nolita a rare and unique creature of this world. Her love of dance, joy of movement through hoopdance and yoga, eye for natural beauty and desire to share makes her a shining performer, divine dancer and profound teacher. Nolita, also known as Nola, is an ecstatic movement leader and views life as a celebration and fertile ground for fun.
Nolita’s love affair with music and movement has been with her all her life. As a child she loved to dance and lip-sync to Madonna and Cyndi Lauper. Growing up she was involved in jazz, modern dance, tap dance and figure skating, yet it all took a new turn seven years ago when her niece bought her a hula-hoop for her birthday. The gift indeed sparked the birth of a new passion. Since then Nolita has sought after numerous hoop teachers and logged countless hours of self-exploration and practice with hoopdancing.
Running away with a Circus
Fiery and fearless, Nolita traveled to Thailand for the first time in 2007 with her hoop strapped to her backpack. There she continued her journey into hoopdance while spending her days hooping on the beach and spending her nights hula-hoop fire-spinning at the jungle parties. Recognizing her passion and natural talents, she was quickly spotted by members of SPARK! circus and was asked to join them. SPARK! is a group of spectacular international volunteer circus performers who come together to bring joy to groups of disadvantaged children in refugee camps, migrant schools, hospitals and orphanages along the Thai Burmese border. As any Sagittarian Fire Dragon would do, two days later she had “run away with the circus!” With funds raised from performing on the Thai islands, Spark Circus makes toys and props for Burmese children in refugee schools in Mae Sot, Thailand. Nolita traveled with the circus to the schools to teach the children circus skills and perform huge fires show for the children when the sun went down. Since then she has spent six seasons performing and fundraising for Spark Circus with the Sanctuary Resort on Koh Phangan. For more information on the circus, to become a volunteer, or to make a donation please visit the official website of Spark Circus.
Read Nolita's blog from the Spark Circus 2014 tour of Koh Phangan, Thailand here
Nolita Ananda firedancing for Spark! Circus 2014
Nolita attended and volunteered on the infamous month long hula-hoop retreat, Sacred Circularities, in Bali, Indonesia in 2014. She spent the full month immerersing herself totally into hoopdance and took workshops with Beth Lavinder, Brecken Rivera, Julia Hartsell, Kenna Hoops, Shakti Sunfire, Tiana Zoumer, Anah Reichenbach aka hoopalicious, Gail O'Brian, Tammy FireFly, Marria Grace and Zack Fischer aka Ninja Hoops. She also performed weekly at the Sacred Circularities Tribal Marketplace fashion show and performance showcase community event.
Passionate about using the hoop as a form of meditation and a tool to connect body with consciousness, Nolita has created 'Ecstatic Hoopdance' and extraodinary dance class uniting joyful play with ecstatic divine.
Nolita has performed fire and LED hoopdance in India, Thailand, Indonesia, Costa Rica and Canada. Some hightlight performances include Squamish Valley Music Festival and New Years Celebrations in Whistler Village. She has taught hoopdance classes through various yoga studios such as the Sanctuary Resort and Agama Yoga School in Thailand. She is available for private hoop classes and performance opportunities.
Nolita is a Whistler busker and will be performing with her hoops on Fitzsimmon's trail all summer during the Sunday and Wednesday markets.
See Nolita's blog from Squamish Valley Music Festival 2014 here
In 2012 Nolita dove deeper into the dance by attending a six-week Mystical Dance Teacher Training (MDTTC) with Monika Nataraj in at the Agama Yoga headquarters on Koh Phangan, Thailand, where she became a certified Mystical Dance teacher. Mysical Dance is a sacred space for women to awaken their Divine Feminine energy through various forms of movement, meditation and ritual. Nolita has taught classes and workshops in Thailand, Costa Rica, and Canada.
Nolita recieved blessings from Daisy Kaye on Koh Phangan after completing a specific training to facilitate Shamanic Dance Journeys through the Five Elements combined with Raw Cacao Ceremonies. Nolita unites this training with her ritualistic Mystical Dance training and blends in the experiences of her extended travels through Central and South America to create a unique healing journey through music, dance, and sacred cacao medicine.
Raw Cacao Ceremony & Five Elements Dance Mini-Documentary
Nolita has offered her Cacao ceremonies in Thailand, Costa Rica, and Canada. During the Nita Lake Luna Festival; the spirituality festival in Whistler, BC, Nolita had the honour of hosting the Raw Cacao Ceremony & Five Elements dance main event on Saturday night. She led the vocals, DJ Chili Thom led the beats and Pashumati Tina James finished the evening with a beautiful gong meditation sound bath. The trio created an unbelieveable conscious dance event together. Read Nolita's article on Nita Lake Luna Festival here
Whistler Cornucopia Festival
Nolita is hosting a Raw Cacao Ceremony paired with yoga during Whistler's annual Cornucopia food and wine festival. The event is Saturday, Nov. 9th at Yogacara Studios ~ 7:30 to 9pm. Cost: $42. Click here to register
With Nolita's various dance and yoga trainings, she has created 'Divinity Dance Workshops;' An incredible infusion of Mystical Dance techniques, Hoopdance Divine, and Raw Cacao Ceremonies.
To become a RYS certified teacher, Nolita took part in the Jungleyoga Teacher Training Course in Thailand in January 2009. Shortly after the TTC, her teacher, Randall O’Leary, invited her to assist him and took her on as an apprentice teacher on the Jungleyoga teacher training team. This experience became an incredible space for Nolita to expand and grow, continue studying the yogic path, and deepen her yoga practice. The experience had a profound impact on her becoming the teacher she is today.
It was on Haad Tien beach on Koh Phangan, a place she's called 'home' for the last seven years, where she found a love for Mysore style Ashtanga Yoga. She spent her days practicing on a beautiful platform over the ocean, under teachers Arne Espejel, Dave Ridgeway, Kristin Berg and S. Mitchell Gold. Her passion for Ashtanga Yoga took her to Brazil in 2011 seeking out Mysore teachers. She was blessed to find two incredible teachers: Matthew Vollmer in Rio de Janeiro and Ana Claudia Lopez in Florianopolis, Santa Caterina. Nolita returned to Thailand shortly thereafter to study under her close friend and world renowned Ashtanga Teacher, Matthew Sweeney, during a one month Ashtanga intensive. Nolita has also studied ashtanga with Danny Paradise and Pashumati Tina James in Whistler, BC.
With a love for the yogic path of Tantra, the path of seeing everything in this world as an expression of the Divine, Nolita studied with Muktananda & Justine Baruch; Senior teachers of Agama Yoga School in Thailand, completing their Tantra One, Tantra Two, and Tantric Rituals courses. She has also taken Tantra workshops with Shashi Solluna, Andrew Fretwell, and Monika Nataraj.
Nolita has visited the Sri Santosh Puri Ashram in Haridwar, India. The Ayurvedic ashram is situated at the foothills of the Himalayas and along the banks of the Ganga River: the sacred river of India that is worshiped as a goddess. During her extended stays she would surrender to the disciplines of ashram living while studying Ayurveda, the ancient healing techniques of most Eastern yogis. She studied ancient yogic texts such as the Bhagavad Gita and Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. It was in this beautiful ashram where she studied the painting of planetary yantras and since then has developed this as a practice of personal meditation.
Nolita painting planetary yantras and drinking chai in Goa, India
In October 2010, Nolita had the honor of attending His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet's four day teachings at his temple, nestled in the Himalayas in Dharmashala, India. The Dalai Lama's teachings of the week were on the impermanence of all things, and that true happiness lies in non-attachment to the material world.
In February 2014 Nolita attended a ten day silent Buddhist meditation retreat at Suan Mokkh in Thailand. Nolita followed a strict schedule of silence and meditation for the duration of the retreat to train and cultivate the mind, and develop concentration, mindfulness and awareness. Suan Mokkh teaches both vipassana or insight meditation and Anapanasati or Mindfulness with Breathing. Read Nolita's blog from the retreat here
With Nolita's twelve years of travelling, and studying with enlightened masters, she has channeled her own divine inspiration to create 'Ananda Vinyasa;' A gentle and sweet style of yoga infused with ashtanga principals of breath and alignment.
Nolita has taught yoga through the Naramata Heritage Inn in Naramata, BC, Nita Lake Lodge, Yama Yoga, and Loka Yoga in Whistler, BC, as well as the Blooming Lotus and Sanctuary Resort in Thailand. She is currently sharing her teachings at Yogacara studios in Whistler, BC.
Sacred Femininity/Jade Eggs
Combining her extensive study of Tantra, yoga, and meditation with eight years of personal practice, Nolita has created Jade Egg Initiation Journeys. She hosts sacred femininity workshops guiding women through the history of the Jade Egg and leading them a meditation journey they can then carry on in their own spiritual practice. Nolita has an upcoming workshop at Yogacara Studios on Sept. 28th. Click the link to book your space online
See Nolita’s article on Jade Eggs here.
Health & Beauty
Having a keen eye for true beauty, Nolita has spent more than ten years working in the health and beauty industry as an esthetician (beauty therapist) and bodyworker. Professionally trained through the Aveda Institute, in Victoria, British Columbia, she offers a range of beauty therapies focused on making people feel peaceful and divine. With a unique awareness of energies, she also offers various forms of massage including Jade stone massage, and traditional Thai Massage, which she is a certified level three practitioner by Thai Massage School of Chiang Mai in Thailand. Bliss is her passion, and she loves helping clients feel divine all day long.
In 2006 and 2007, Nolita was voted “Whistler’s Best Esthetician” by Pique Newsmagazine. She is offering a range of beauty & massage services Blue Highways Shiatsu & Massage Centre. Nolita also offers Swedish Relaxation massage at Yogacara Studios in Whistler, BC. Click the link for online bookings.
Her admiration for beauty doesn’t stop with just physical beauty. Nolita expresses her creativity through the art of making jewelry and specializes in “Goddess Shoes” (barefoot sandals) and Indian inspired headpieces. Her jewelry making is a form of meditation, allowing her to channel divine creativity as well as support her dreams and other needs for expression.
Uncovering her Soul
Nolita believes that all paths to bliss go through the heart where the true seat of courage lies. Traveling this path, she has been with her primary spiritual teacher, Don Hanson, for the past four years, dedicating herself to inner exploration, personal growth and soul expression. She has spent this time attending numerous Transforming Cellular Memory workshops and working one-on-one with Don undergoing deeply transformative and spiritual work. Nolita believes that the light glows brightly within us all and each effort to uncover our layers and shed our veils will bring us closer to this sacred truth to inherent bliss within. Below is a video on the process of Transforming Cellular Memory with Don Hanson. Nolita encourages anyone and everyone who is drawn intuitively to the video, to explore the connection with Don further. Attend a workshop, or book a private online Skype session. It truly is the most amazing gift you could ever give yourself.