Professional Kirtan Leader Intensive

  • Thursday, August 6, 2020 - Sunday, August 9, 2020
  • Nyland Community Association, Lafayette, CO
Professional Kirtan Leader Intensive

GO PRO: 4-Day Intensive for Professional Kirtan Leaders

If you long to expand your Kirtan beyond local community to regional and national to include tours, festivals and albums , the Level 4 Kirtan Leader intensive is for you!

This intimate, personal and exclusive program is limited to 6 participants who are serious about leading a Kirtan band. The ratio of students to instructors (3) will offer each participant in this 34 hour training valuable one-on-one attention from a professional Kirtan drummer, a pro voice teacher and KLI founder Mike Cohen. The learning you will experience is real and profound – each participant will have the opportunity to demonstrate their embodied learning by leading a chant in a real-live public Kirtan event complete with audience, sound system, professional musicians and response singers. This training will help you understand how to set up tours, perform and festivals and understand/execute on the process of creating/releasing recorded music. The program will help you build connections with 2 professional music producers, and will likely include a day trip to an actual recording studio in Boulder, CO.


In order to be deemed ready for this advanced program, participants are expected to have successfully traversed KLI Levels 1, 2 and 3 via classes, intensives and/or private sessions

Those who are not current Kirtan Leader Institute students can apply via interview/audition with Mike. Email to set up a meeting.

Our trainings utilize the proven KLI methodology and unique system for accelerated learning. These programs are 100% dedicated to training YOU as a Kirtan Leader. All participants will need to have a strong base of understanding to participate successfully and get the most out of this intensive.


The LEVEL 4 intensive will help you build the skills and confidence required to expand your Kirtan offers beyond local (to regional and national), book tours and festivals, and create albums. You will emerge more with skill and capacity for guiding many moree participants into much more deeply transformative experiences through ecstatic chant!

This program is perfect for:

* Existing Kirtan leaders who share sacred chant in their community and want to radically expand their reach and ability to create transformative chant experiences.

In this four day intensive you will:

* Uplevel your ability to lean your band (drummer, response singer and more!) with skill, ease and power

* Rotate through the roles of Kirtan Leader, response singer and audience in order to gain valuable perspectives on the Kirtan experience

* Workshop your original chants in preparation for more potent events and an album project

* Understand potent strategies and build a personal action plan for expanding your touring (local-> regional -> national) and creating a successful album project.

* Deepen your ability to take participants on a potent spiritual/musical/energetic journey.

This class will help you launch and establish yourself as a regional/national Kirtan Leader. You will grow through practice, guidance and coaching around:

* Leading a band with skill, ease and power

* Growing regional and national community, both in person and virtually

* Workshopping your original chants

* Clarifying, articulating and manifesting your unique vision as a professional Kirtan Leader in the world.

You will discover your authentic style as a Kirtan Leader and you will:

* Work with and build energy during your events

* Learn how to build vibrant communities of musicians, venues, advocates and chant participants on the regional and national levels

* Build the skills to share this extraordinary practice with the world!

Support faculty include skilled, professional Kirtan drummer Ken Matarazzo, beautiful voice teacher/Kirtan Leader Dawnia Dresser and more. All faculty are dedicated to helping you embody the skills and capacities of a PROFESSIONAL KIRTAN LEADER.


In the domain of MUSIC you will:

* Write compelling original chants

* Build your vocal skills

* Get more out of your harmonium

* Learn to cue your drummer, musicians and response singers so you can lead a band with skill and ease

* Learn how to assemble a tribe of musicians and the key criteria for finding/choosing musicians

* Plan and execute on an album project

In the domain of LEADERSHIP and COMMUNITY BUILDING you will:

* Create an even deeper sense of center in your body and in language.

* Engage in action planning so you can fulfill on even deeper longings in the domain of Kirtan.

* Understand self, others and relationships via the Enneagram on 5 levels (self, others, 1-1 relationship, personal development and Presence).

* Understand and learn how to identify and minimize Spiritual Bypassing so you can learn to Wake Up (Spiritual practice), Grow Up (Psychological practice), Mess Up (be willing to take chances), Clean Up (Shadow practice), Open Up (Multiple Intelligences) and Show Up fully for self, others and the world as a Professional Kirtan Leader.

* Build communities of chant participants, supporters & venues virtually and in person, locally, regionally and nationally.

* Learn to effectively utilize audio, visual and online technology

* Create full-band community Kirtan events, tours and festival

* Build a public identity as a PROFESSIONAL Kirtan Leader

* Lead groups through transformative chant experiences!

In the domain of BUSINESS and TECHNOLOGY you will:

* Understand the flow of setting up/promoting successful tours and festivals

* Receive a Draft Contract for Events

* Engage in Strategic/Action planning

* Learn essential information about sound systems and powerpoint projection

You will AVOID:

* Not having skill in cueing and leading your drummer, response singer, band and participants

* Launching an expensive album project without being adequately prepared

* Making critical mistakes with musicians, venues, festivals and your local/regional/national community of chant participants

* Looking amateurish and making costly mistakes as you grow your public identity and Kirtan local/regional/national community

This training includes:

(i) 28 hours of training time

(ii) Kirtan event where you lead an original chant with The Shakti Groove (drums, bass, cello, response singers, sound system + audience)

(iii) Two pre and two post intensive video conference calls- dates and times TBD.

(iv) Field trip and Zoom call with professional Kirtan producers

… and more!

WHAT: Level 4 Kirtan Leader IntensiveWHEN: Thursday, August 6 at 9am through Sunday, August 9 at 1pm.

WHERE: Nyland Co-Housing – 3525 Nyland Way Lafayette, CO 80026


* Super early bird pricing of $995 through June 17

* Early bird pricing of $1095 starts June 18

* General admission pricing of $1195 starts July 8.

Register here or by sending a check to Mike Cohen- #3551 Nyland Way Lafayette, CO 80026.


* Thursday, August 6 training from 9am-5pm

* Friday, August 7 training from 9am-5pm

* Saturday, August 8 training from 9am-5pm + full-band Kirtan event

* Sunday, August 9 training from 9am-1pm

TERMS OF SALE: Customer assumes all risk or danger incidental to the training or event(s), whether occurring prior to, during, or subsequent to, the actual program(s).

NO REFUNDS: All sales are final. No refunds will be granted. However, funds may be applied to future programs.

LIABILITY AND PHOTO/VIDEO RELEASE: I grant permission to Kirtan Leader Institute and Shiva Datta Music, LLC to use any/all photos or videos taken of me, the participant, for any Kirtan Leader Institute and/or Mike Cohen Kirtan event promotional purpose, including but not limited to the website, brochures, Facebook events, newsletter, photographer/videographer owned footage or other promotional items.

HEALTH DISCLAIMER: I certify that I, the participant, have consulted my physician and am in good health and have no physical or other impediment that would endanger me while participating. I hereby acknowledge that I understand all of the risks associated with this activity and knowingly agree to release, indemnify, discharge, waive and relinquish Shiva Datta Music, LLC (or its agents, employees, volunteers or parent companies or affiliates) from any and all liabilities, claims, or actions for personal injury, property damage, or wrongful death which may arise out of my participation.

Got questions? Email Mike at


Just as in Dancing with the Stars, or Fantasy Baseball Camp, this Kirtan Leader Class offers you an opportunity to work with professional musicians who are accustomed to performing at large, successful Kirtan events.

Working with professionals will quickly increase your level of development. You will receive ongoing professional support in building your Kirtan skills. This program offers a safe and supportive container, allowing you to continually stay at your learning edge.


"I wanted to thank you again for the best chanting weekend evah! I loved every minute of it– all the teachers were tops, the participants you drew from around the country, the structure, the content…I had a chanting hangover (in the best possible way). My confidence improved dramatically as a result of the weekend.”

— Amy Lieberman, Yoga Teacher, Kirtan Leader, Health Coach

"I was truly blessed and honored to be part of this intensive. Namaste to all who attended, facilitated and supported this awesome program. This program really gave me made lasting state of gratitude and satisfaction. Highly recommended!"

— John Gorecki, Kirtan Leader

"Mike’s group training program for Kirtan Leaders is deep, powerful and pervasive, and his passion shows through. Mike, thank you for helping me embody a deeper and more transcendent vision for myself and others!”

— David Coddington, small business owner, Kirtan Leader

"Mike has illuminated the practice of leading Kirtan in ways I never could have imagined. I have grown in confidence as a leader, a musician, and as a spiritual practitioner. I’m so grateful for this gift."

— Tim Jordan, Los Angeles, CA


Mike Cohen, MA is founder of Kirtan Leader Institute. Since 2010 he has trained and apprenticed hundreds of aspiring and emerging Kirtan Leaders across the globe from total beginners to several he has guided to create/release Kirtan albums, play at festivals and tour nationally.

A life-long musician with 16 years experience developing leaders, Mike created a proven methodology for training and apprenticing Kirtan Leaders based around five relevant domains for leading Kirtan: Musicianship, Leadership, Community Building, Entrepreneurship and Spirituality. Work within these 5 domains helps Kirtan Leaders build skill and confidence in serving others through the ancient/modern practice of sacred chant.

Mike has released four critically acclaimed albums, and in 2019 has been creating more new music with Grammy Award nominated producer Ben Leinbach (Jai Uttal, Krishna Das, Deva Premal). For over a decade, Mike has toured North America, offering accessible and potent Kirtan events in yoga studios, healing centers and at yoga/chant festivals. Mike lives in Boulder, CO where he spends 100% of his time sharing Kirtan and training Kirtan Leaders through his Kirtan Leader Institute. More at


Boulder, CO based Dawnia Dresser is an Anusara inspired yoga teacher and lifelong vocalist/musician. She will release her debut Kirtan EP of soul-infused mantra music (created with renowned Kirtan producer Ben Leinbach- Jai Uttal, Deva Premal) in December 2019. During her 19 years in Los Angeles, CA Dawnia co-created three albums of original folk-rock music and contributed extensively on albums and movies as a vocalist and voiceover artist. A graduate of Colorado State University with a degree in music and vocal performance, Dawnia serves as faculty in the Boulder, CO based Kirtan Leader Institute. Her warm heart, clear and caring teaching style and beautiful voice have led her to become a beloved member of the Kirtan community in CO and beyond.


Ken Matarazzo is a Boulder, CO based performer and teacher who has studied and performed on frame drums and afro cuban percussion since the early 90’s. Some of his teachers include master drummers, Randy Crafton, Layne Redmond and John Amira. Ken has collaborated with diverse artists, such as Jerry Joseph, Layne Redmond, Jim Matus and most recently Kirtan Leader Mike Cohen. Ken currently serves as faculty in the Boulder, CO based Kirtan Leader Institute.

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