written by Kourtney Mei
This October, a unique event in Southern California brings together spiritual gurus, coaches, and speakers of the modern day consciousness movement under the energy of a music festival. The One Love Experience, a three day transformational festival in Ojai, aspires to create a Woodstock-like experience with the hope of spreading peace and love to the masses.
Musical acts—including many kirtan greats—include Matisyahu, Trevor Hall Band, and Emblem3. The lineup combined with an incredible list of workshops and teachers like David Wilcock, Yogi Cameron, and Gay and Katie Hendricks work in harmony to bring something new to the transformational festival experience. I recently had the opportunity to discuss the event with visionary producer Ken Schwenker; read on to learn about and I am so excited to share all I learned with the elephant journal readers. The event itself has high and I am excited to experience it for myself.
Festival Squad: Ken, thanks for taking the time to talk with me. I understand you came from the Hollywood world and have had a very impressive career producing films. What inspired you to create a yoga and music festival?
Ken Schwenker: You know that’s really interesting, I have done about 30 films and it’s been an interesting career. Then about 9 or 10 years ago I went to India and came back and Chiraiya Fox and I founded Bhakti Fest – Have you heard of Bhakti Fest?
FS: Yes, I have and it’s all been positive things but I have never attended.
Ken: Well, it turns out there was never a festival like that ever. Bhakti Fest offers the best Kirtan in the world along with the finest yoga teachers out in the desert and it became a huge success. I created the name Bhakti Fest and the first year it really flew. I ended up leaving after the first year but the festival still goes on and I am very proud of it as it is known around the world.
That is where I caught the bug and doing a live event was very exciting compared to making movies. Making movies is exciting in a different way, but a live event is just electric. You are in the moment – you are in the now.
So after that I did another event called Leaders Causing Leaders, which brought together 180 speakers at the Long Beach Convention Center. Then one day, while meditating it just came to me: Wow, love is the strongest force in the world. And I said, “I’m going to do the One Love Fest” and that is how it came to be. It all starts with a thought like that. This year is very exciting – it’s a breakout year. We have a great location, not only in proximity to LA and Santa Barbara but also just a beautiful area in Ojai, CA.
FS: Could you elaborate a bit more on what is different this year and what attendees can expect at The One Love Experience?
Ken: Well first of all, the lineup. We have incredible names like Matisyahu and Trevor Hall along with C.C. White, Emblem3, of X-factor fame. It’s really magical the way it’s come together. Then for speakers we have David Wilcock doing a special talk for us called “Love Will Heal The World: Scientific Proof of Ascension” and Gay and Katie Hendricks who are top relationship gurus are speaking. Yogi Cameron, the yoga teacher to Ellen Degeneres, will be leading a workshop along with so many others I can’t even begin to name. While the main stage is between sets we will have some amazing and fun workshops going on – it’s going to be a packed weekend.
FS: Wow. So it sounds like a lot more than just another music festival.
Ken: Oh yes – far more.
FS: Do you consider this event to be a transformational festival then?
Ken: You could call us that but it’s not a name I use. See we called it the One Love Experience because it is going to be a huge experience. We are going to have some special exercises before the main acts take the stage. Because, when it comes down to it love is an incredible word, although a misused word at times. Love is actually distinctions, and what are distinctions?
Making people feel safe and comfortable.
Recognizing another person.
So we are going to incorporate some quick, fun exercises that the group will do with thousands of others which will be incredibly powerful. When you do exercises like that as a group, it unites everyone and you walk away with a new power you never knew you had. At least that is my inner goal.
FS: I also understand this event is a dry event meaning no alcohol will be served. Curious to learn the reasoning behind this decision and how it will change the festival vibe?
Ken: Oh it will totally change the vibe. I’m not opposed to drinking but I find when there is drinking within a large group that it does shift the vibration. So we decided not to have any alcohol served at this event. At Bhakti Fest, people are just naturally high and I want people to experience this – to break out and be comfortable without having to have alcohol.
FS: You mentioned love being the theme; I’m wondering what love means to you and what do you believe the power of love can do?
Ken: Well, I think love can do anything. The Beatles said it best, “All you need is love” and I just think in this time in the world that if we can go within our self to the place of acceptance, love and peace that we will be okay. You know, if you get riled up with all the noise in politics or society then we will be disturbed. So that part of the experience is to remain in peace and love and hopefully we’ll be sharing tools with people to do that.
FS: Thanks so much for your time, Ken. It sounds like an incredible event, thank you for putting something together with such a powerful message behind it. Namaste.
The One Love Experience takes place October 7-9. Go HERE the full lineup and tickets.