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Spring 2010 newsletter


  Spring 2010
PO Box 2003, Vashon, WA 98070
The BedDear Aimée,

The Big Joy Project is about the power of art and poetry to change lives. Experimental filmmaker and poet James Broughton exemplified this. His encouragement to "Follow Your Own Weird" sparked creativity and integrity in many others, and continues to do so today.

We are grateful for your interest in continuing this mission. We have many wonderful weird things to report this issue -- including a fabulous artistic fundraising event in Portland, excerpts from our recent interview with Dancer and Choreographer Anna Halprin, a new "Follow your own Weird" t-shirt, an update on our fundraising, news about our Facebook page where you will find inspiring Broughton quotes and more.

Praise and thanks,
The Big Joy Team

Only when I
By James Broughton

 Only when I wing 

am I dancing on the ground 

Only when I fly 

        am I  I 

Only when I sing 

Am I quietly profound 

Only when I glee 

        am I me 
The Infinite Opportunities of Artistic Adventures
Interview excerpt from Anna Halprin

Dancer and Choreographer Anna Halprin
Anna Halprin 2010
At the beginning of this year, our film crew again ventured to California in order to do more interviews for the film.  We thought you might enjoy this beautiful excerpt from our interview with Dancer and ChoreographerAnna Halprin.  

(A list of those amazing people we interviewed follows.)

We asked Anna about her role and James Broughton's role in the San Francisco Renaissance, the era from 1945-53 that gave rise to The Beats. This is what she had to say: 

"Because we were so separate from the East Coast where the arts are more commercialized, we were not bogged down by the intellectual, conceptual version of art. Everyone was experimenting, exploring and trying out new ideas.  

"Once the conventional boundaries were broken through, then all of the new possibilities began to emerge. 

"For example, in my field [I realized] you don't have to dance in a stage; everything is a stage. You can use the whole theater, or you can go on the streets or on the beaches or in the woods. There is no given space that art must take place. 

"We broke the boundaries by being able to incorporate the connection between life and art... the connection between your life and your art. I think it was the flowering of art that began to manifest itself even through today."

Other recent interviews:
Poet Robert Peters, therapist and gay activist Don Kilhefner, author/photographerMark Thompson, author/spirit-guideMalcolm Boyd, poet/environmentalistMichael Hathaway, performance artistKeith Hennessy
We did it! 
First Portland fundraiser a success!

Stephen n Periwinkle
Periwinkle n Stephen Portland
In addition to raising $3,000 for the project, the entertainment was superb.

We heard tantalizing readings fromTom Spanbauer,Michael (Sage) Ricci, and Aaron Raz Link, saw 5 new short Broughton"mashup" video clips made by Geoff Watland, and heard music by Periwinkle (who produced the event), Holcombe Waller and Jason and the Nervous Twitch.  The film's director Eric Slade performed a magic trick, and the film's associate producer/chief comic Aimée Cartier entertained the audience with jokes.  Of course the evening wouldn't have been complete without the "Gnomeland Security" who did their best to make it weird.  (Just the way we like it!)

NEW Broughton-based Video Clips
Created by Geoff Watland

Click on the image below to see the new two minute video "mash-up" composed by Geoff Watland using footage from James' films. This was one of the lovelies we saw at the Portland event. New Broughton "mash-up" of The Bed
The Bed

Follow Your Own Weird T-Shirt Design
Follow Your Own Weird T-Shirt
"Follow your own weird," is one of our favorite James Broughton mottos... and now we've made t-shirts so that you can remind yourself and others of that exact thing.

See our Cafe Press store for more fun products.
The truth is, we can't make this film without your help.  We are currently raising our next $150,000 so that we can finish filming our interviews this summer and move forward on our planned poetry animation.  Without your contribution this will not be possible.  So if you believe in the power of art to change lives, and that following your own weird can lead you to a more fulfilling life that benefits others, we would love to receive your check.  The address for sending money is below.  Or you can go to our website:, and click on the "Donate" button.  And by all means, tell your friends.  Help us get this wacky, weird, wonderful message out into the world!
What is Big Joy? 
An Interview with Executive Producer Stephen Silha

The following are excerpts from a recent interview. Read the full interview.

What did James Broughton mean by 'Big Joy'?
SS: Big Joy was what he called himself the latter part of his life when he realized it was much healthier to exude the joy we all have in us. It gives us energy instead of draining us. When we give joy, we get it back.

He called it "health care for the soul." He described a visit from his Muse, a silver angel he called Hermy who told him this: "Believe in the unbelievable, worship wonder, celebrate life. The world is not a miserable prison, (but) a playground for a nonstop tournament between stupidity and imagination."

Big Joy is also the unspeakable thrill of what happens when you "Follow your own weird."

Is there any particular moment or experience you had with James that reallly stays with you all of the time or pops up often?
There were so many. I loved the way he flirted with people even as he got older. Men and women, young and old, he loved to be amorous and flirtatious. It was fun to see him unlock the up-tight-ness of somebody who least suspected it from an old guy like him.

Facebook Challenge
Get inspired with quotes!

Broughton/Big Joy Facebook Page
James facebook page image
Just in the last two weeks we've had nearly 1,000 visits to the Big JoyFacebook page. One of our fans, Collin Brown, has challenged the fans of the Facebook page "James Broughton and Big Joy" to expand to 1,000 fans by May 17 (James's death day) and 10,000 fans by James's birthday, November 10! Please invite your friends!

So if you're looking for regular inspiration, become a fan of our James Broughton/Big Joy Facebook page where you will find James Broughton quotes and poems regularly posted by our page maestro Stavo Craft! 

Thanks, Stavo, for continuing to inspire so many with these posts. 
To support the power of art and poetry to change lives - send us your donation today!
TO DONATE: Send us a check to PO Box 2003 Vashon, WA 98070 
or go to www.bigjoy.organd click "Donate." For tax deduction (gift of $50 or more): put Big Joy in the Gifts Membership Field at Northwest Film Forum
BLOG WITH US: Living Big Joy Blog or James Broughton and Me
BIG JOY INTENTION:The Big Joy Project creates more joy in the world by inspiring people to "follow thier own weird," using the life, joy, and work of James Broughton- filmmaker, poet, writer, wildman-as inspiration.
QUESTIONS: call (206) 567-4363 or email