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Vancouver Moving Theatre presents a series of Aboriginal showcases and Art Market. This unique event runs through mid-October, promising a wealth of cultural offerings for our city. Here’s an overview of the remaining lineup.

Urban Heiltsuk Dance Group
[Urban Heiltsuk Dance Group]

Louis Riel Métis Dancers
Date: August 22, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Established by Yvonne Chartrand in 2001, this professional dance ensemble has extensive training in traditional Métis dance, a unique blend of European reels and waltzes with the dances of our Native American heritage – creating one of the most intricate and difficult of any Aboriginal peoples. The Louis Riel Métis Dancers perform regularly and can often be seen at local events and festivals throughout the year including Canada Day, National Aboriginal Day, Talking Stick Festival, Festival du Bois, Heart of the City Festival, Dance Allsorts, and the Noon Dance Series.

Iskwew Singers
Date: August 23, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Andrea Menard, Sandy Scofield, and Fara Palmer are all award winners with active careers in other forms of music and art. Through Iskwew, these powerful singers bring the songs and sounds of their rich and vibrant culture to the ears of the world. Iskwew Singers wear traditional clothing or regalia and play hand-drums and rattles.

Métis Silver Tip Swingers
Date: August 29, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Proudly presented by the BC Métis Federation, the Métis Silver Tip Swingers take great pride in showing their traditional dances and are dedicated to teaching the world about who we are. Their Métis traditional dances are exciting and full of high-spirited energy resembling a combination of step dancing, Irish jig, and pow wow fancy steps.

Urban Kwakwaka’wakw Dance Group
Date: August 30, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
The Urban Kwakwaka’wakw Dance Group is comprised of singers and dancers from each of their 16 original tribes. The songs and dances they share come from traditional potlatches; these songs are presented in the same sequence that they would be in a traditional potlatch.

Urban Heiltsuk Dance Group
Date: September 7, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Comprised of members from various Heiltsuk families, this group shares songs composed especially for their children as well as for cultural sharing. These songs and dances are taught at the Bella Bella Elementary School.

Kwhlii Gibaygum Nisgaa
[Kwhlii Gibaykw Nisga’a]

Kwhlii Gibaykw Dance Group, Nisga’a
Dates: September 14 and 28, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Kwhlii Gibaykw translates to English from Nisga’a as Flying Around, used to describe the performance as every Nisga’a performer is constantly in movement. Kwhlii Gibaygum Nisga’a is a dynamic, high energy group of performers that incorporate stories, songs, and dances of the Wahlingigat (Ancestors) into contemporary performances. The majority of its members can trace their ancestry to the Nisga’a from Ksi-Lisims, the Nass River.

Bev Lambert, Solo Métis Jigger
Date: September 21, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Beverly Lambert is the Cultural Ambassador for the BC Métis Federation and was born and raised in a small Métis community in Fort Vermillion, Alberta. Her parents raised a family of 19 with lots of love, laughter, and good values. Having won numerous awards, teaching has now become Beverly’s destiny – to instill pride in our youth and to keep the culture alive. She has embraced the Métis way of life, making her feet dance like the wind.

Git Hayetsk Dancers
Date: October 12, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Git Hayetsk is an internationally-renowned Northwest Coast First Nations mask-dancing group. Git Hayetsk translates to the people of the copper shield in Sm’algyax, spoken by the Nisga’a, Tsimshian, and Gitxsan Nations. Their dancers are bonded by a common ancestry to the Sm’algyak speaking peoples with family ties to the Haida, Tlingit, Haisla, and Musqueam Nations. Since 2003, they’ve shared their songs and dances at ceremonial and public events in urban and rural communities throughout Canada, the US, and abroad.

Wayne Lavallee
[Wayne Lavallee]

Closing Ceremonies Featuring Wayne Lavallee and more
Date: October 13, 12:30 to 1:30 pm
Wayne Lavallee was a two-time Juno nominee and winner for “Best Folk Acoustic Album”, “Best Rock Album”, and “Best Male Artist” at the 2010 Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards. He has created a gritty and deeply personal set of songs, filled with captivating performances and his trademark keening voice. The album was released in Europe (France) with Wayne garnering glowing press reviews throughout his French tour.

Artists in the Atrium
Dates: August 1 through October 13
August showcases and Art Market: Thursdays and Fridays, 11 am to 4 pm
September showcases and Art Market: Saturdays and Sundays, 11 am to 4 pm
October showcases and Art Market: Oct. 11 to 13 only, 11 am to 4 pm
Note: There will be no performances or Art Market on the weekend of October 5 and 6.
Venue: SFU Woodward’s Atrium, 111 West Hastings Street, Vancouver
Everyone is welcome to attend this free community event

Other artists to be presented at the Aboriginal Showcase will include Downtown Eastside and Vancouver-based traditional dance groups from First Nation territories across BC. For updates, please visit the Artists in the Atrium website.

In late May of this year, Terry Hunter (Executive Director, Vancouver Moving Theatre, Artistic Producer DTES Heart of the City Festival) approached Lou­‐ann Ika’wega Neel (an Kwakwaka’wakw Nation artist) with the idea to produce an Aboriginal program at the Atrium with the mission to support local Aboriginal artists in the DTES and across the city. After developing the initial idea in discussions with Terry and his partner Savannah Walling (Artistic Director, Vancouver Moving Theatre), Lou-ann is now honoured to serve as Cultural Producer for this initiative.

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