Longtime Topanga resident Candace Carnicelli has been a part of the Topanga Peace Alliance since its inception, and has been the director of the nonprofit Common Peace, Center for the Advancement of Nonviolence at the Peace Center in Culver City, since 2001.
“Our focus is nonviolence education based on Dr. King and Mahatma Gandhi’s principles of nonviolence,” she told the Messenger. “Common Peace facilitates monthly film nights, a monthly race relations dialogue at our office called Race Relay, we produce a summer Nonviolence Animation Camp – one of which was at the Topanga Library in 2013.”
The center, which facilitates “creative nonviolence seminars for individuals and groups,” has produced and published a nonviolence curriculum entitled: “64 Ways to Practice Nonviolence,” and developed an English/Spanish poster of the same name, used by teachers and facilitators who are involved in peace/nonviolence education/peer mediation.
This year, Carnicelli is bringing her philosophy to the Whitefire Theatre’s Solo Festival in Sherman Oaks, February 12, in a performance titled “Becoming Peace: A One Woman Rhythmic Dramedy about Power, Culture, Violence and Nonviolence.”
“I developed [this piece] over the past four years, partially as a teaching tool for the nonviolence work that I do with Common Peace and partially to continue in my theatrical journey,” Carnicelli said.
Carnicelli is also involved with “The Season for Nonviolence,” an annual 64-day non-violence campaign initiated by Arun Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi’s fifth grandson, in 1998. The event is co-produced by Common Peace and the Agape International Spiritual Center.
“This year we are celebrating the 20th year of the Season,” Carnicelli said. “It is a time during which Common Peace and Agape honor local heroes in the Los Angeles community who are embodying, igniting, and practicing the principles of nonviolence, with a commitment to creating what Dr. King referred to as The Beloved Community. Some of our past heroes honored are Ellen Geer and Peter Alsop for their heartfelt, creative theatrical work with students through the Theatricum.”