Art museum hosts yoga class, other outreach activities


Editor’s note: The video associated with Friday’s event experienced technical difficulties. Check back later for the video.

Sinking into a yoga pose on a colorful crocheted rug next to 20 other people, looking up into the high ceilings and listening to indie music brought a new feeling into the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum for Sarah Tomlinson.

While other museum visitors walked by admiring paintings on the walls, Tomlinson, a music education senior, relaxed and admired the museum’s atmosphere by participating in a community yoga class at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the education wing.

Julia Nagy / The State News

Community outreach programs and education programs — performances, lectures, film showings and live art — are just some of the attractions museum officials hope will draw in crowds.

Management also is expanding its presence online by launching a new Broad blog and new multimedia to show everything the museum has to offer.

Leyna Lightman, manager of education at the museum, said the museum is planning activities, such as yoga classes, to attract students and residents.

“One of our main goals is to have a good outreach with students and do anything to get them to the Broad,” Lightman said. “Every week, we are trying to get things that people in our community can participate in.”

Yoga instructor Sloane Montgomery was asked to come teach Yin, a style of yoga meant to strengthen muscles, hold certain poses for an extended amount of time and help participants release stress during a one-time-only class last Friday at the museum.

Montgomery, who teaches at Yoga State, 515 E. Grand River Ave., said the museum made the yoga seem different because of the cool temperature and high ceilings.

“I’ve been in so many places when it comes to teaching yoga, like a gym or nice, warm yoga studio, but I’m excited to do it in this big museum,” Montgomery said.

Lightman said to improve outreach, the museum is working with student organizations to improve Family Days, which happen on the first Saturday of every month and feature family-oriented crafts, educational programs and exhibits. Lightman said the museum also will start sending Broad representatives to grade schools to teach children about art and in return, invite children to visit the museum.

Tomlinson said she would come back for outreach events at the museum because it brought a whole new experience.

“Since Yin is a more psychological way of yoga, the museum is a good place because since there is more sound than usual, it makes you focus more,” Tomlinson said. “I am a huge advocate of the arts and getting people to this museum, and since this is on campus, it’s nice that it is close to get to.”

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