It’s the 20th anniversary of the National Talking Stick Festival.
Well technically, this event was on full swing at the start of this month & we’re late for the party. But don’t you worry, there is a lot to see and do starting this week, in celebration of National Indigenous People’s Day, June 21.
At the start of every season this year, the First Nations reunites with a month of concerts, dance performances, exhibitions, theatrical presentations, film, you name it. Backed up with some serious, progressive talent from the community, right now we’re celebrating Summer Sojourn.
And it’s a-okay to be jammin’ in our jammies, as many of these events are live and swinging online.
Here is the breakdown of TALKING STICK FESTIVAL: SUMMER SOJOURN (Virtual),
Week June 21st – July 1st.
June 21: Nch’u7mut cheshá7 temíxw – Giving Back to Mother Earth
Land-based video and photography art exhibit that investigates how the relation to the land has shifted or deepened as a result of the disruption of the pandemic.
June 21 (7-8:30 pm): Mawessine’s (“united” in Wolastqey) Gala, 35th anniversary: United for and through Indigenous Art
Ondinnok was the first francophone Indigenous theatre company in Canada, 5 short pieces inspired by some of the company’s flagship productions will be performed.
June 25: The Hitchhikers at Home!
Jamie Thomson (Haida Nation) and Dennis Joseph (Squamish Nation) are bringing in some music, laughter and stories.
June 21 – July 4: Who We Are Indigenous Film Series
A film series celebrating Indigenous voices in cinema, showcasing strong, engaging stories from First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Maori filmmakers while showing the beauty, complexities and vibrancies of Indigeneity around the globe.
June 28, 5-6pm: Who We Are Film series – Live Stream Panel Discussion
Zacharias Kunuk (director) Antanarjuat and Violet Nelson (actress) The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open will be led into a discussion by Odessa Shuquaya and Rylan Friday.
July 1, 2-3 pm: Stand like a Cedar | Children’s Book Reading
Award-winning storyteller Nicola I Campbell reads from her latest children’s book, Stand Like a Cedar. Through Stó:lō artist Carrielynn Victor’s breathtaking illustrations, the book is a celebration of land-based and Indigenous teachings. Reaching back through generations, it carries forward important teachings while also remembering sacred responsibilities and interconnectedness to the land.
July 1, 7- 8 pm: Standing Strong: For the Children chén̓chens iy̓ím Shi ti Mun mun
A celebration of Indigenous story, dance and song featuring the book launch of Stand Like a Cedar with award-winning children’s author, Nicola I. Campbell and illustrator Carrielynn Victor.
Performances from the following artists:
Butterflies in Spirit is a dance group comprised of family members of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.
Tsatsu Stalqyu (Coastal Wolfpack) — a traditional Coast Salish performance group.
JB The First Lady is a hip hop and spoken word artist, beat-boxer, cultural dancer and youth educator whose fearless lyrics speak to challenging subjects like residential schools and missing and murdered indigenous women.
Curtis Clear Sky and the Constellationz – a band that plays “Indigifunk” – that’s hip-hop music with elements of funk, soul, blues, reggae and ska performed with an uplifting Indigenous voice.
I don’t know about you but I am dying to tune into ‘The Hitchhikers at Home!’
Which one are you sneaking into?
See the full info and links on these and further Summer Sojourn programming on the Talking Stick Festival website www.talkingstickfest.ca.