PLANETARY DANCE  with Anna Halprin:   Healing through the Ritual of Community Dance

Marguerite Lorimer,  Director - Co-Producer - Photographer - Assistant Editor
John Veltri,  Co-Producer - Cinematographer - Editor
Kyung Lee, 2nd Camera - Assistant Editor

sponsored by Tamalpa Institute, Kentfield, California

and Endorsed by
Anna Halprin, Legendary Dancer-Choreographer-Teacher
The Planetary Dance Committee


In 1980, the San Francisco Bay Area became paralyzed with fear because of the murders of six Marin County women on the trails of Mount Tamalpais. Inspired by Anna Halprin and her husband Lawrence Halprin, people from around the Bay Area gathered on the Mountain to dance, pray for justice and healing, and “take back the Mountain”. Several days after the dance the murderer, who later became known as the Trailside Killer, was captured.

30 years later, the Planetary Dance - considered by Anna Halprin to be her “greatest work” - has spread around the world.  Planetary Dances are forming in communities globally to bring together people of all ages and physical abilities and from a diversity of cultures and backgrounds, to dance, sing and pray for global, community, and individual healing and peace. A transformative process that affects the entire participating community, individuals report feeling a deeper connection to other people as well as the natural world, and a freedom of expression in body, mind, and spirit.


Digital photographic images and HD videography by Lorimer and Veltri of the predawn ceremony on the top of Mount Tamalpais, the preparation for the Dance under the Old Oak Tree, and the Earth Run (Community Healing Dance) in Santos Meadow; materials from Anna Halprin’s Planetary Dance archives; photos from around the world; with original music and performances by Planetary Dancers from around the world.

These two short video previews (above) were created as invitations to the 2008 and 2009 Planetary Dances in Marin. Music 2009 Anton Mizerak

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Planetary Dance is a call for healing the economic turmoil, ongoing wars, climate change and many other problems that threaten our planet.       -  Anna Halprin


Planetary Dance is an EarthAlive documentary film-in-production sponsored by Tamalpa Institute and endorsed by Anna Halprin

The film is organized around Anna Halprin and her original story of how the Planetary Dance came about (starting with the Trailside Killer story). It includes photos and footage from several Marin California Dances (with Anna Halprin leading); photos from dances that were held throughout the world; historical photos and footage; original music; special performances and individual offerings; and the moving insights of people who trained with Anna and have incorporated her teachings into their own performances and lives, and shared these gifts with the world. 

We are receiving many inquiries about the availability of the DVD. You can help produce this film! Write to us if you would like to be a part of this historic production. info@earthalive.comhttp://www.tamalpa.org
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A Documentary Film In-Production

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On Sunday, June 2, 2013 Anna Halprin will lead a culturally-diverse community in Marin County, California’s 33rd Planetary Dance. The theme of this year’s Planetary Dance is “Global Renewal”.

Each year, the day starts with a small group - always including Anna Halprin - who walk to the top of Mt Tamalpais to greet the morning sun with poetry, prayer and song. Joined later in the morning by hundreds of participants in Santos Meadow (between Muir Beach and Muir Woods in Mill Valley) the Planetary Dance Main Event includes a sharing of poetry, dance, drumming, singing, an Earth Run, a Children’s Prayer, a Quiet Time for reflection, and a Pot Luck for all participants. This event, open to all people, is held each spring in communities around the world.  More info

After a silent pre-dawn walk to the top of Mount Tamalpais, participants are rewarded with the view

As the sun begins to rise participants share poetry, prayers, thoughts and songs

At top of the world, Anna Halprin and Planetary Dancer James Nixon greet the day

Looking west from the top of Mt Tamalpais, the rising sun lights up the ocean and the clouds.

Calling in the Four Directions

The children are blessed in the center, then assisted as they pour out the flour, marking the big dance circle

Following the beat of the drum, participants are led in silence to Santos Meadow

Later in the morning, when the community gathers at the Meadow under the Big Tree, friends greet friends

Children, elders, families... young and old, everyone joins in

A Planetary Dancer leads her friend in the Earth Run

Standing with the drummers in the center of the circle, Anna Halprin leads the Earth Run

Each participant stands, calls out his or her prayer or intention, and then joins the Dance

The Dance begins - the Earth Run!

Back-to-back, participants rest, meditating between Dances

The final Dance!

The Dance over, participants return to the Big Tree, where a feast awaits

Joy and freedom... participants dance their prayers for others

Anna Halprin and drummer Barbara Boxer prepare participants for the Planetary Dance

Other Planetary Dances are being held throughout the world. Want to find out if there will be a Planetary Dance in a community near you?  

Visit to find out more.


The Planetary Dance has spread worldwide.

Have you participated in a Planetary Dance outside the US?

Contact us if you’d like to share your experience:

What does the Planetary Dance mean to you?

Please contact us to share your experience:

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