Hollyhock Presenters

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Our presenters are curated for their quality, depth, integrity, and alignment with our educational purpose. Since 1982, a distinguished faculty of authors, educators, activists, artists, performers, and practitioners have shared their work at our Cortes Island campus and in Vancouver.

People smiling at Activate 2023 Hollyhock Leadership Institute

David Yates

David Yates has a B.A. (2001) from The Evergreen State College, with equal time spent studying writing, theatre, music, and dance. He has worked in elementary schools as a support educator for special needs programs, as an anti-violence facilitator for high school students, and is now an instructor for performance-based programs through Camosun College and the Victoria Conservatory of Music. He began his journey with didgeridoo in 2009 with Shine Edgar, an Australian didgeridoo master who learned from Noongar elders in Australia. After that single private lesson, things simply clicked, and David began playing with a number of Vancouver’s local world musicians including Shine, Pepe Danza, Alcvin Ramos, and Kurai Nyamukapa.  The world fusion collective Naad also invited him to join as a performer, a project which has evolved throughout the years to include a wide range of musicians, styles, and instrumentation. Around the same time, he began documenting his learning process on YouTube as “Breathwood,” never expecting that this would eventually lead to recognition around the world for his casual but clear teaching style. David now plays for a wide range of sound, meditation, dance, and yoga events in spaces throughout Vancouver as well as virtually. He also teaches private lessons both in person and online.