New Dance Leader Training and Development Programme 2017 – 2018

by Jilani Cordelia Prescott and Christina Gulzar Lausevic.

We feel greatly honoured to offer the next opportunity in the UK to embark on a Dance Leader Training and Development programme. We want to first acknowledge Philip Tansen O’Donohoe, who has offered several Dance Leader Trainings in the UK in recent years, and whose support and blessing we are grateful to have.
Gulzar leading a danceIn this article, we want to share our inspiration for offering this programme at this time. We hope that you might pass it on to others whom you know who might be drawn to this path, or who want to deepen in the sacred path of Dance Leading. We also want to address some of the practical concerns people may have around Dance Leading which may be holding them back when their heart is saying “Yes”.

Who is this programme for?

This programme is for mentored leaders of the Dances of Universal Peace, and also for those new to the path of Dance Leading.
We invite those who feel called to embark on a deeply enriching and exciting journey with us, not only on their path as Dance Leader, but also as an opportunity for profound personal development, spiritual growth and self- discovery. We also invite you to join us if you are a certified Leader who is looking for renewed motivation, inspiration or confidence in your Dance Leading.Altar
Some of you may be drawn to our programme without knowing what you want to do with the Dances in future – that is fine, you don’t need to know. We encourage you to follow your guidance and to trust that the next steps will emerge in good time.

Why are we offering this now?

We both feel guided to come together to offer this programme at this time. For each of us, the Dances of Universal Peace have been one of the most precious gifts in our lives, and to lead the Dances is the most valuable way that we have to touch the lives of others. We feel that the world needs the Dances of Universal Peace more than ever before. The more people who feel drawn to share this wonderful gift with others, the more peoples’ lives will be touched and transformed. So much, if not all, of the suffering of humans, comes from feeling separate, disconnected and alienated. Many of you may have experienced that, no matter what is going on in your life and how disconnected you feel, when you bring all of you into the Dance, your experience of the world can begin to change. After a Dance session you usually leave feeling expansive and reconnected with yourself and others.
Imagine if the Dances were offered more widely to all ages in all kinds of institutions and communities: in the classroom; in care homes; in special schools; in hospitals. The Dances can be adapted to all ages and abilities (which is something we intend to explore on our training). We are passionate about expanding the reach of the Dances so that they can touch people who would not normally come across them, people who don’t know that camps like Sacred Arts Camp exist (and, if they did, wouldn’t or couldn’t come to them). For this we need more Dance Leaders in the world – both new Dance leaders coming forward, and existing Dance Leaders to get inspired to share their gift more widely.Musicians in dance circle

We are excited about inviting people to drink from the well of our collective expertise, and to experience the transmission of these powerful practices as they come through us. We are both natural teachers and combine over 50 years of experience as trainers, dance leaders and musicians. For more information about the content of the course, see the description at the end of this article.

Do I need to be a musician and play an instrument?

Many people are concerned about becoming a Dance Leader if they don’t already play a suitable musical instrument. In fact I (Gulzar) had the same concern before starting my own Dance Leader training.
Viola and guitar

I bought a small djembe drum as I assumed I would never be able to play the guitar well enough. But things changed during the training and miraculously I started playing simple chords, and found it easier than playing the drum whilst leading. I know others who couldn’t play the guitar before and are amazed that they have been able to start playing well enough to accompany the Dances.
Many of the Dances only need 2 or 3 simple chords. Or indeed, simply strumming the guitar with a special tuning called open tuning requires no chords at all at the most basic level, and one can learn to play in this way with great ease. We believe in making things simple and accessible wherever possible, and can now offer this as a gift to others.

There are also many leaders who either just work with their voice, with or without a drum, or who choose to work with musicians, or a mixture of these methods.
In the UK in the past we have been blessed with a number of Dance Leaders who are excellent musicians, which can lead people to feel that such a high standard of musicianship is a pre-requisite. However in other countries this is far less common, and many leaders work with one or more musicians, rather than playing for themselves.

Jilani leading a dance
When I (Jilani) started to lead dances, I usually preferred to lead just with my voice, as I didn’t play the guitar at all. Over time I have learned and gained confidence with playing the guitar, usually in open tuning, although I still like to play the viola when there is a guitar and drummer available! But the main thing to understand is that there are many ways to work with the dances and musical accompaniment.

The Gardens, Whaley Hall

The Gardens, Whaley Hall


We will encourage this kind of experimentation on our training so leaders don’t get fixed on one way of doing something, and can discover what works well for them. These different ways of leading all provide opportunities to develop different skills and create a different effect. The only requirement is an openness to the joy of exploration!


Guided by Jilani Cordelia Prescott and Christina Gulzar Lausevic

Shepherd’s Dene, Northumberland

Shepherd’s Dene, Northumberland


A two year course including four residential retreats in beautiful and comfortable venues.




Whaley Hall, Derbyshire

Whaley Hall, Derbyshire


Jilani and Gulzar are currently the only mentors offering a Dance Leader training course in the UK.





For bookings or more information, contact:

Gulzar: Tel. 0191 241 1963
(Email –

Jilani: Tel. 01422 886410 or 07966 451534
(Email –




  • Breath Practices
  • Voice Work
  • The Sacred Phrase
  • Leadership Skills
  • Developing Magnetism
  • Spiritual Walks
  • Dance Repertoire
  • Musicianship
  • Confidence
  • The Dances as a Healing Practice
  • Energetic Holding Skills
  • History and Background of the Dances

What is included in this training programme?

We will guide and support you on this journey every step of the way. Included in this 2-year training are:

• Four residential training retreats, totalling 16 nights full board accommodation in twin-bedded rooms. The retreats are held in comfortable and beautiful venues with expansive grounds. We will have sole use of these country houses for our own group.
• Between these live trainings, you will be supported in your unfolding development with regular group video conference calls (16 calls, or 24 hours in total).

As a Dance Leader, you will:

  • find and develop your unique voice as an expression of your heart and soul
  • expand your Dance repertoire and deepen in the spiritual traditions and practices of the world
  • develop an understanding of the power of sacred mantra and the energetic and healing effects of sound
  • develop your musicianship and learn how to embody a greater sense of rhythm
  • explore how different Dances support our grounding and expansion in different ways
  • understand group harmonisation and how you can use this to support healing and transformation
  • expand your energetic range so that you can embody different qualities, elements and polarities at will
  • develop your capacity to speak to peoples’ hearts and open them with your words
  • allow your gift to flow through you from a place of empowered surrender and magnetic presence
  • discover practical marketing tools to help you to take your transmission of the Dances out into the world

Shepherds DeneMany Dance Leaders, even those who have already completed a training, still feel held back in their leading, or in putting themselves out there in their communities. In this particular training, with its added focus on supporting you with personal development as well as leadership ability, we aim to help you from the start to discover and overcome potential obstacles to being a successful and magnetic Dance Leader.

Whaley Hall, Derbyshire


Both Gulzar and Jilani are trained and very experienced teachers and guides, and a particular skill they share is to see your gifts and to let these unfold joyfully and with ease.



Christina Gulzar Lausevic

Christina Gulzar Lausevic’s first career was in teaching and teacher education. Now a personal transformation and relationship coach and facilitator, she runs Heart Awakening Retreats integrating the Dances. She leads Dances mainly in her home city of Newcastle upon Tyne, at camps and at home and abroad and is passionate about the capacity of the Dances to help people heal and awaken to their fullest selves, and in creating heart-centred community.


Jilani Cordelia Prescott


Jilani Cordelia Prescott trained as a classical musician, and has taught music for many years. Her main focus is now teaching the Dances, at home and abroad, and she has Dance mentees in six countries. Her passion is to work with people, enabling them to shine more fully as themselves, and to share their gifts with others.



Practical Details

Sitting room

Sitting room at Whaley Hall


Includes full board for four 4.5 day residential Retreats (in twin-bedded rooms) in two beautiful country house retreat centres, in Northumberland and Derbyshire. Both are easily accessible by air, rail and road (there is a small supplement for single rooms).

We will have the luxury of having the whole place and the extensive beautiful grounds for our group. In between the retreats, we will have a total of 16 video conference calls with the whole group via Zoom or a similar interface.



Twin-bedded room at Shepherd’s Dene

Twin-bedded room at Shepherd’s Dene

• 27 April – 1 May 2017 – Shepherds Dene, Northumberland
• 25 – 29 October 2017 – Whaley Hall, Derbyshire
• 3-7 May 2018 – Whaley Hall
• 24 – 28 October 2018 – Shepherds Dene




Total investment in yourself £2,357
You may choose to set up a payment plan with us, to pay in monthly instalments.
Special reduced price for payment in full by 18 October 2016: £2,207 (saving £150) A deposit of £300 secures your place. This is refundable until 18 October 2016.



For bookings or more information, contact:

Jilani: Tel. 01422 886410 or 07966 451534
(Email –

Gulzar: Tel. 0191 241 1963
(Email –


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About Cordelia Jilani Prescott

Jilani has been playing viola for the Dances of Universal Peace since 1997, and leading Dances since 2005, becoming certified as a Dance Leader in May 2008. Sufism is her spiritual path, along with motherhood (she has three sons) and music. She has worked as a musician and teacher since 1989 and spent several years training as a healer. She brings these skills to her Dance leading, with a teaching style that is light and down-to-earth, but powerful. She has led Dances throughout the UK since 2005, and has travelled internationally to share Dances in Europe, Morocco and the USA. In addition she runs regular groups and retreats at her home, the Heart Centre, a small retreat centre near Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire. Jilani loves to work with trainee Dance Leaders, and especially with young people, helping them to fulfill their potential as leaders and musicians with the dances. She also works with her own Sufi students, and currently leads a monthly Zikr and weekly Ruhaniat-style Sufi classes on Zoom, as well as occasional longer retreats.