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Ode’min Giizis 2011

About the Ode’min Giizis Festival
The Ode’min Giizis Festival is presented by O’Kaadenigan Wiingashk (OKW) and Public Energy in Peterborough, Ontario. From June 20-24 2012, Indigenous artists, including musicians, performers, visual artists, writers, storytellers, artisans, and dancers will gather to expand our imagination and dreams while pushing the boundaries of their art forms.
The Festival and Its Name

Ode’min Giizis (pronounced o’DAY-min GHEE-zus) is the sixth moon of the Anishinaabe calendar. It marks the beginning of summer, the longest day of the year, and the harvest of the strawberry in June. The root word of ode’min is “ode”. “Ode” signifies the heart in Anishinaabemowin (the Anishinaabe language). As the strawberry resembles the shape and colour of the human heart, it also represents the sweetest and kindest of emotions that bring people together to feast and exchange ideas.

The Ode’min Giizis Festival celebrates this auspicious time of year and traditional Anishinaabe territory with a five day multi-disciplinary arts festival in Peterborough, Ontario featuring local and visiting artists from the four directions. OKW and Public Energy invite you to come out to experience a diversity of Indigenous artistic expression and events – including the community procession, the traditional gathering, gallery exhibitions, performance art, talks, dance, storytelling, theatre, and music concerts.
Festival Philosophy

Each of the presenting artists is unified by a strong self-determined aesthetic that honours traditional lands, culture, and knowledge while also pushing boundaries in their own respective art forms. Artists will share their work and their dynamic processes in an effort to stimulate greater dialogue and cultural understanding through the arts. Events will take place at various downtown venues and will be co-presented by local arts organizations in a spirit of creativity, unity, and the sweetness of the strawberry.
Nogojiwanong a.k.a. Peterborough, Ontario

Peterborough sits on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg and is originally named and known as Nogojiwanong (Place of the End of Rapids). For thousands of years, this region was known as a gathering spot where different tribes, families, and leaders would converge to exchange ideas and knowledge. Sites such as The Petroglyphs, Serpent Mounds Park, and Aboriginal oral traditions confirm this regional history.

Festival Schedule
Wednesday | Thursday | Friday | Saturday | Sunday

Wednesday June 15th

2-4 PM

Reception & Exhibit

Black Honey
221 Hunter St. W.

New Paintings
A Tribal Death by Thomas Olszewski


Festival Opening Celebration

in partnership with the Art Gallery of Peterborough
250 Crescent Street

Exhibition: Honouring our Anishinaabe Garden

Catalogue Launch: ayaandagon: outdoor art installations in an anishinaabe garden, curated by William Kingfisher.

Book Launch: Dancing on our Turtles Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-creation, Resurgence and a New Emergence by activist, educator and editor Leanne Simpson.

Ongoing Exhibition: Robert Houle:Paris/Ojibwa
May 14 to Sept 4, 2011

full descriptions here


Opening Exhibition
in partnership with The Art Gallery of Peterborough

Live Music
Kubo Lounge
413 George Street N

Bimaadiziwin and the Inner Child: New Art Works by Paul Shilling

Music: An evening of classical guitar with Gabriel Ayala

Thursday June 16th


Contemporary Dance at the Lakers Game

Peterborough Memorial Centre
151 Lansdowne St W

Free with admission to the Lakers game
Tix (16.50. $11. $3.50)
Available at 705 743 3561 or online

The Creator’s Game: A ten minute presentation of a new contemporary dance creation by internationally renown choreographer Santee Smith of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre. This presentation will take place before a lacrosse match between the Peterborough Lakers and Brooklin Redmen.

The Creator’s Game is a contemporary twist on an Iroquoian game played since the beginning of time. A new short work choreographed by Artistic Director, Santee Smith, inspired by the Haudenosaunee game of lacrosse. According to the Iroquoian Creation Story, the game now known as lacrosse has been played since the beginning of time, initially a contest between dueling Sky Being twins. The Creator’s Game honours this spiritual significance of lacrosse and shares Iroquoian cultural pride by uniting song and dance with sport.
The Creator’s Game – Creative Team

Artistic Direction/Choreography/Design/Performer: Santee Smith
Composition/Arrangement: Derek Miller
Performers: Crystal MacDonald, Emily Law, Cheri Abrams, Shayne Martell, Jared Robillard, Danny Vyse and Aroniakeha Elijah.
Stick Maker: Delby Powless Sr.
Wardrobe: Elaine Redding
Photo Credits: Nadya Kwandibens
Music Credits:
Derek Miller – Vocals, Synth, Guitar, Bass & Percussion
George Buck – Vocals, Water Drum & Horn Shaker
Crystal MacDonald – Vocal
Matthew Miller – Guitar
2oolman – Synth and Beat
Bill Wood – Drums
Engineered by Jonny Wine
Mohawk Language Consultant – Jeremy Green
Music Recorded at Jukasa Studios, Six Nations


Spoken Word & Electric Pow Wow

Kubo Lounge
413 George Street N

Fee: By Donation

A spoken word performance by Vancouver’s two time word slam champion, Zaccheus Jackson. Dance to the beats of Bear Witness, DJ NDN, DJ Frame and DJ Shub (two-time Canadian DMC Champ), known to the world as A Tribe Called Red.

full descriptions here

Friday June 17th


Experiential Education

Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

(the Art of Living in a Good Way)

Educators and their students have been invited to celebrate the cultural richness and contributions of First Nations peoples. Bimaadiziwin (the Art of Living in a Good Way) is our name for this experience as the youth will be supported in mental, physical, emotional and spiritual learning opportunities through active participation and interaction with leading lights in Indigenous education and artistry.

Click for a detailed schedule of Bimaadiziwin.


Performance Art

212 Hunter Street W
behind the Benevolent Stranger


Robin Brass: ‘mi ima ehkosit’ (there it hangs…).
A video/audio/performance in nahkewewin (plains anishinaabemowin), expressing the interconnectivity of story, language, love and transcendence. As stated in the performance, “There is no end / We do not stop”.



Market Hall Theatre
140 Charlotte Street

Tix: $10
available at Market Hall
or call 705 749-1148

Theatre Sports: Herbie Barnes +Sid Bobb+ Micheala Washburn+ Craig Lauzon equal Tonto’s Nephews, an all Native improve troupe.Be prepared to bust a gut as Tonto’s Nephews belly up against top notch, made to order, Twoshees And ahee with Millbrook’s own Paul O’Sullivan, with Jan Caruana and Lisa Merchant.The evening will be hosted by Neal McLeod.

full descriptions here


Music: The Red Revue
In partnership with The Association of the Native Development of the Performing and Visual Arts monthly music series.

Historic Red Dog Tavern
189 Hunter St. W

Tix: $10 at the door only

Featuring Samantha Crain and a Peterborough Showcase: Missy Knott, Sean Conway, Rob Foreman, Sarah DeCarlo, Charlie Chickenhawk and the Anishnaabe Babes.
“Ms. Crain — with turquoise tights screaming out from between a beige print dress and red cowboy boots — was captivating. Her pleading, slightly distant intonation recalled early-1990s Britpop, an accent atop a voice that traverses the space between Gillian Welch and Regina Spektor.”
– New York Times

Saturday June 18th

Sunrise Ceremony

By the Tipi
Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Everyone is welcome to this early morning gathering to celebrate the first days of summer, to honour the ode’min (heartberry/strawberry) and our water. It is customary for women to wear longish skirts.


Community Procession

Confederation Park
500 George Street N

Community Procession participants meet in front of Peterborough City Hall and at 11am will travel along George Street (car-free) to the grand entry of our Traditional Gathering at Del Crary Park. All are welcome to participate.

Click for detailed information on the Community Procession.


Traditional Gathering

Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Tix: By Donation

This beautiful day long celebration features Drumming & Dancing from Indigenous nations, fine arts and craft people, regional food specialties, canoeing, family art-making activities, contemporary performance, gallery tours, storytellers and culturally-grounded workshops. The Ode’min Giizis Traditional Gathering is a platform for social exchanges, cultural sharing, and ceremonious rituals. Indeed, this special day is a time of teaching, learning, singing, dancing, feasting, sharing, and healing.

Click for detailed information on the Traditional Gathering.

5-7 PM

Panel Discussion
Supported by the department of Indigenous Studies Pine Tree Lecture Series, Trent University

Market Hall, 140 Charlotte St.


Robert Houle’s Paris / Ojibwa. With Barry Ace, Deb Chansonneuve, David McIntosh, moderated by Wanda Nanibush In conjunction with the Art Gallery of Peterborough’s presentation of Robert Houle’s Paris/Ojibwa. Moderated by Wanda Nanibush, the Paris/Ojibwa Panel includes the artist, Robert Houle, and theorists David McIntosh, Barry Ace and Deb Chansonneauve, who discuss Houle’s AGP exhibition, which acts as witness to the period when Ojibwa and Parisian cultures first make contact in France. More at


Outdoor Music Concert

Hunter Street Stage
(between Aylmer and Chambers)

Tix: By donation

IndieGenius: Featuringa musical collaboration with David Maracle (flute and percussion), Chaka Chikodzi (marimba), Gabriel Ayala (classical guitar). And The Imbayakunas, music and songs from the Andes; Old Mush Singers; the Resolutionaries and the Country Boys.

full descriptions here

Sunday June 19th

Iroquois Lacrosse Program Dewa:ao gajihgwa;e
(The Creator’s Game)
Place: Thomas A. Stewart School, 1009 Armour Rd., in the gym and on the field.
Ages: Boys and girls, ages 6-16
Fee: $10
To register: Call 705-745-1788 or email//”>

Thomas A Stewart High School
1009 Armour Road

Taught by members of the Iroquois National Team and members of the Peterborough Lakers

The Iroquois Lacrosse Program is a day-long interactive program for youth to learn lacrosse skills and the cultural origins of the game, taught by some of the best players in Canada. It teaches boys and girls to
• understand the true origins of lacrosse;
• participate in skills, drills and interactive games;
• hear about the opportunities available in the fastest growing team sport in North America

Lunch: Participants must bring their own lunch.
Sticks: Do you need a stick? Sticks will be provided at no cost if you let us know upon registration.

Full Event Descriptions
Wednesday June 15th
Honouring our Anishinaabe Garden
The Garden brings together art, the land and a variety of local indigenous plants. This Garden can be used as medicine and for ceremonies. The Elders who provided guidance asked that strawberry, pennyroyal, tobacco, and wild rice be planted in the Garden. The other plants were chosen not only because they were local, but for their medicinal properties and as a food source for birds and butterflies. This Garden gives us the opportunity to think about how we come to dwell in a landscape and our relationship to all on the land and the water.

Catalogue Launch
ayaandagon: outdoor art installations in an anishinaabe garden, curated by William Kingfisher.
descriptor coming soon.

Book Launch
Dancing on our Turtles Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-creation, Resurgence and a New Emergence by activist, educator and editor Leanne Simpson.
Many promote Reconciliation as a “new” way for Canada to relate to Indigenous Peoples. In Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence, and a New Emergence activist, editor, and educator Leanne Simpson asserts reconciliation must be grounded in political resurgence and must support the regeneration of Indigenous languages, oral cultures, and traditions of governance.
Simpson explores philosophies and pathways of regeneration,resurgence, and a new emergence through the Nishnaabeg language, Creation Stories, walks with Elders and children, celebrations and protests, and meditations on these experiences. She stresses theimportance of illuminating Indigenous intellectual traditions to transform their relationship to the Canadian state. Challenging and original, Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back provides a valuable new perspective on the struggles of Indigenous Peoples.

Ongoing Exhibition from MAY 14 TO SEPT 4, 2011
Robert Houle’s art installation, Paris/Ojibwa re-imagines a grand 1845 Parisian room in which two different cultures, Ojibwa and Parisian, make contact, evoking the lingering memory of the historical Maungwudaus and his (Mississauga) dance troupe performing for the Parisian court.

The artist first became aware of this enduring connection between cultures during a trip to Paris. He noted that exotic encounters with Native Americans impressed the 19th century Parisian imaginations of poets and painters, notably George Sand, Charles Baudelaire and Eugène Delacroix.

Robert writes that, “seeing the Delacroix sketch, Cinq etudes d’Indiens, (of the Ojibwa dancers) at the Louvre’s Pavillon de Flore, le department des arts graphiques was like traveling back in time to when Delacroix first drew it”.

The artist’s re-imagining of what may have happened in this encounter began in 2006 during his residency at La Cite des Arts in Paris. The resulting multi-media installation pays homage to the memory of the indigenous dance troupe, as well as a reflection on the crucial theme of the aesthetics of disappearance. The title of the work alludes to contact between Europeans and a group of Mississauga from Upper Canada guided by a remarkable man, George Henry, Maungwudaus (a Great Hero). Houle explains that his 16 foot square by 12 foot high set that installs replete with a sound component and futurist animation projection is “a cultural hybrid of theatricality and ethnicity”.

Robert Houle’s Paris/Ojibwa received support from the Canada Council and the Ontario Arts Council.

Thursday June 16th
Spoken Word and Electric Pow Wow

In 2008, DJ’s NDN, Frame and Bear Witness founded A Tribe Called Red. In 2010, they added 2 time Candian DMC champ, DJ Shub to the crew. Electric Pow Wow is a bi-monthly club night dedicated to showcasing Aboriginal DJ talent and Native urban culture and is aimed at creating a space for Aboriginal people. These three veterans of the Ottawa music scene come together to create an eclectic sound made up of a wide variety of musical styles ranging from Hip-Hop, Dance Hall, Electronica, and their own mash-up of club and Pow Wow music. You can catch Electric Pow Wow every other month on the second Saturday at Babylon nightclub in Ottawa, Canada.

Friday June 17th
Performance Art: Robin Brass. ‘mi ima ehkosit’ (there it hangs…)
A video/audio/performance in nahkewewin (plains anishinaabemowin), expressing the interconnectivity of story, language, love and transcendence. As stated in the performance, “There is no end/We do not stop”.

Theatre Sports:Tonto’s Nephews vs. Twoshees Andahee

Live Comedy with Impov Theatre Sport stars!
On Friday June 17th, at 8pm sharp, at the new and improved Market Hall Performing Arts Centre, the Ode’min Giizis Festival promises an evening of laugh out loud Theatre Sports. Two teams, Tonto’s Nephews, an all-Native improv troupe led by well known Canadian actor, Herbie Barnes, (appearing in 4th Line Theatre’s production of Drew Hayden Taylor’s, Berlin Blues this June), and comedian Craig Lauzon, (member of The Royal Canadian Air Farce), belly up to the lightning-fast reflexes of Twoshee’s Andahee, a made-to-order improv troupe led by Millbrook’s Paul O’Sullivan. O’Sullivan, (a close friend to comedy and theatre in Canada and the United States), with Lisa Merchant (winner of three Canadian Comedy Awards), and Jan Caruana (Mean Girls), are pitted against Tonto’s Nephews in competitive improv matches. Using the audience to fuel the laughs, the two teams must create totally improvised situations on the spot. Referee Neal McLeod (Trent U. professor, visual artist & comedian in his own right), will slap the improvisers with penalties and jabs – or reward them with bonuses, as he sees fit. Round after grueling round, the audience will be called on to vote for the best scenes and the sharpest improv.

The Red Revue: Cutting edge, contemporary Indigenous music headlining at the Red Dog
The Historic Red Dog Tavern will host a rollicking evening with a Peterborough Showcase featuring: Missy Knott, Sarah DeCarlo, Sean Conway, Rob Foreman and Charlie Chickenhawk (Charles Glasspool) and the Anishnaabe Babes. Headlining this concert is Shawnee Oklahoman Samantha Crain (recent chart topper on the National Aboriginal Music Countdown), who has added Peterborough to her “You (Understood)” cross-border tour of the US and Canada.

Saturday June 18th
IndieGenius Outdoor Music Concert

Indie-Genius! An outdoor concert in Peterborough’s Café District featuring a one-of- a-kind musical collaborations among a diversity of renowned artists. Not to be missed! Top notch musicians come together in a musical collaboration featuring a who’s who of contemporary and traditional Indigenous artists from near and far. There’ll be dancing in the streets Saturday night, in the heart of Peterborough’s Café District with this Indie-Genius outdoor concert featuring multiple awarding winner David Maracle on flute and percussion (Akwesasne Mohawk); internationally renowned classical guitarist Gabriel Ayala from Arizona; music and songs from the Andes by The Imbayakunas; traditional singing from the Six Nations with The Old Mush Singers; traditional hand-drumming with youth sensations The Country Boys from Edmonton; and a hot new blend of hybrid Zimbabwean Marimba music with local band The Resolutionaries led by Chaka Chikodzi.

Traditional Gathering: June 18th

Fire by the Tipi
Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Sunrise Ceremony: Everyone is welcome to this early morning gathering to celebrate the first days of summer, to honour the ode’min (heartberry/strawberry) and our water. It is customary for women to wear longish skirts.

Sacred Fire

Fire by the Tipi
Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

The sacred fire is a place and opportunity, for everyone who wishes so, to reflect and to pray. Please ask the Fire Keeper if you are unclear around protocol, they will be happy to inform you.

10:00 am

Confederation Park
500 George St.

Community Procession meets at Confederation Park, by City Hall.
You are heartily invited to join the Fun in the annual Ode’min Giizis Community Procession. We would be honoured to have you walk with us!
For more info please click here

11:00 am

Community Procession begins – car free- from City Hall to Del Crary Park


Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Grand Entry is a ceremony of participation. Flowing down the main street of downtown Peterborough Community Procession participants will join the artists and visitors who have come to share in the wonder of a Traditional Gathering. We will be supported by the Arena Director and Emcee to enter into the Dance Arena of this year’s Ode’Min Giizis Festival’s inclusive community celebration.
1:30 – 5:30 pm

In The Performance Tipi

Storytelling & Circles

1:30Paul Schilling The artist will host this circle and discuss his artwork and Festival exhibition: Bimaadiziwin and the Inner Child
2:00 Kerry Bebee Traditional Birth Practices & Experiences Circle
2:30 Doug Williams Stories of the Mississauga peoples
3:30 Leanne Simpson The Lacrosse Game that Changed Everything

1:00-6:00 pm

Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Ongoing Activities

Loon Game Story by Jimson Bowler (1:30pm)
Meet at the shoreline at the end of the rapids, as Jimson erects a contemporary sculpture based on the traditional story of the first lacrosse game. With Anishnaabe speaker Randy Knott.

Indigenous Drumming and Dancing
featuring Morningstar River; TaabikSingers: Old Mush Singers; The Country Boys and the Aztec Dancers.

Art Making: Family-friendly crafts with the professionals of Red Pepper Spectacle Arts

Family canoeing on Little Lake with the Canadian Canoe Museum and Nogojiwanong Friendship Centre.

Food & Craft Vendors

Art exhibits and Garden at The Art Gallery of Peterborough

1:00 pm

Jingle Dress Dance Special
Honouring Lilly Osawamick Bourgeois Ba

3:00 pm

The Creator’s Game: Dance meets sport in the world premiere of a short new work, inspired by the game of lacrosse, from Kaha:wi Dance Theatre. With choreography by Santee Smith and music by Derek Miller.
3:30 pm
4:00 pm

Activities which MEET at the Tipi

3:30 pm Sid Bobb: Expressive arts: exploring aboriginal values through comedic improvisation
Stories are often about what lies in the heart. How we feel about many things; about the experience of those many things. Stories invite us to share our experience and to listen to other people’s experiences. Story telling is when we do this together in a public way. Throw in some laughter and now we’re cooking. Laughing is good healthy medicine. Lets explore laughing and telling stories together in a good healthy way!

3:30 pm Iroquois Lacrosse Program: Dewa:ao Gajihgwa;e: The Creator’s Game: An Introduction
This team of world-class professional Lacrosse players & coaches will be giving a teaching on the origin of this popular and traditional game as well as an introduction to playing through interactive conditioning warmup, skills development exercises and cooperative games.

4:15 pm Joseph Naytowhow: workshop Nikamowina Mena Nemihtowina.
This is an interactive song and dance workshop from Woodland Cree territory. Participants will be introduced to a mix of drum songs and dances and will sing in Nehiyowewin pikiskwewin (Cree language) and dance mimicking animal/bird movements. If you have a drum bring it. If you have some feathers or some beads bring them. Time permitting a Metis fiddle dance will top off the workshop. Mocikihtatan (Let’s Celebrate Together).


Del Crary Park
100 George Street N

Zimbabwe Drum & Dance demonstration featuring Julia Tsitsi Chigamba and the students of her Intensive Workshop June 14-June18th at Sadleir House. To enroll or enquire :
Aaniin, She:kon, Hello, Tansi, Bonjour! The Ode’min Giizis Traditional Gathering is a platform for social exchanges, cultural sharing, and ceremonious rituals. Indeed, this special day is a time of teaching, learning, singing, dancing, feasting, sharing, and healing.

Location: Del Crary Park, Peterborough Ontario

Host Drums: Morningstar River and Taabik Singers
Invited Drums: The Country Boys, Hobbema, Alberta; Old Mush Singers, Six Nations of the Grand River Territory; Wshkiigamong Women’s Hand Drum, Curve Lake First Nation
Invited Dance Groups : Aztec Dancers; Jock Family; Zimbabwean Ensemble
Traditional Roles: Male Elder Doug Williams, , Grandmother Audrey Caskanette
Master of Ceremonies: Gerard Sagassige
Jingle Dress Special: Honouring the late Lilly Osawamick-Bourgeois Ba

With Special Guests…
Santee Smith and Kaha:wi Dance Theatre: The World Premiere of The Creator’s Game
Red Pepper Spectacle Arts- Family Craft Workshop
Story Telling with Joseph Naytowhow, Louis Profeit-LeBlanc, Leanne Simpson, Doug Williams and Circles with Kerry Bebee and Paul Shilling
Canoeing on Little Lake : The Canadian Canoe Museum, and Nogojiwanong Friendship Centre
Workshops include: Comedic Improvisation with Sid Bobb and the Iroquois Lacrosse Program

This is a drug and alcohol free event. Please, no pets.
There is a no smoking by-law in Del Crary Park. Please puff in designated smoking areas.
Admission is free, donations are welcome.

Traditional Gathering Committee
Our dynamic committee has come together to carefully plan this exciting undertaking in effort to bring our community together in celebration of the heartbeat, unity, and the sweetness of the strawberry.

2011 Ode’min Giizis Traditional Gathering Committee members include:
Cara Cowie
Noelle Ewing
Georgina Horton-Baptiste
Liz Osawamick
Wendy Phillips
Karyn Drane-Recollet
Patti Shaughnessy
Heather Stewart
Liz Stone
Karen Watts
Hilary Wear
Shirley Williams

Traditional Gathering Etiquette
Pow Wows are fun events! Here are a few gentle reminders for those who are unfamiliar with Pow Wow protocol:

Those who are able to stand are requested to during all ceremonial songs and dances. These include the Grand Entry, Flag songs, Veteran Songs, Honour Songs, and any other songs that the M.C. designates as ceremonial songs.
Please feel free to take any photos, video or sound recording, but be sure to listen for announcements from the M.C. to withhold from documenting certain ceremonial songs and dances.

If you wish someone to pose for a picture, please ask permission.
Be sure listen to the M.C. as he will announce the different songs and will also let visitors know when they may dance and when there are songs for specific dance categories or specials. He will also announce other information and news.

Please respect the Elders, singers, dancers, drummers, and the Traditional Gathering staff and Committee.

The dancers wear regalia while they are dancing, not “costumes”. People should not touch the regalia or take photos unless they receive permission from the dancer.
The sacred fire is a place to examine your thoughts and to pray. Please ask the Fire Keeper if you are not informed on proper protocol, they will be happy to inform you.

Parents should take good care of their children at the Festival. Those who have young children are asked not to carry their child within the dance arena. Anishinaabe teachings are that if a child is held within the arena it may be suggested that the child is being offered back to the Creator.

Drugs or alcohol are not permitted on the Traditional Gathering grounds.
Please do not bring your dogs to the dancing and drumming area. Remember that Del Crary Park is smoke free, so puff in designated smoking areas.

Have fun, ask questions, and meet people!

Greening the Festival and Traditional Gathering Dishware Policy
We are requesting the help of all attendees to contribute to reducing emissions, waste, water use, and energy consumption. To do so, we are requesting that everyone:

Bring a Feasting Bundle of a reusable plate, bowl, and utensil, which will reduce landfill waste. Alternately we will provide a safe and sanitized Feasting Bundle for a $1 deposit, refunded upon return of dishware.

Ride a bike, walk, take the bus or canoe to Del Crary Park to reduce carbon emissions.

Bring a reusable water bottle – water filling stations will be provided free of charge. This significantly reduces production of non-biodegradable plastic.

Do Not Litter or Waste – please place all compostables and recyclables in the bins provided and ensure that ALL Cigarette BUTTS are placed in the garbage cans. This will ensure that the toxic chemicals do not seep into our lake, river, and underground aquifers from which our communities drink.

OKW and Public Energy would like to thank-you in advance for being environmentally responsible during this Festival as we all contribute to keeping our land, water, and air clean and safe for the next seven generations (and beyond). Miigwech.

Barry Ace

Anishinaabe (Odawa), b. 1958

Barry Ace is a band member of the M’Chigeeng First Nation, Manitoulin Island, Ontario. He is a practicing visual artist, curator, writer, educator, dancer and federal bureaucrat who has dedicated his life’s work in support of the Aboriginal arts community for more than 30 years. He is a former Lecturer, Department of Native Studies, University of Sudbury; Chief Curator and Acting Chief, Indian and Inuit Art Centers, Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development; Co-Founder and former Director of the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective; and currently, Senior Policy Analyst, Social and Cultural Sector, Treasury Board Secretariat in Ottawa, Canada.

As a practicing visual artist, his multi-disciplinary work has been included in numerous group and solo exhibitions, including the Canadian Museum of Civilization; Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba, Brandon; American Indian Community House Gallery, New York City; and the Nordamerika Native Museum, Zurich, Switzerland. Most recently, his work was included in N’nisidwaamdis: “I Recognize Myself”, a touring exhibition organized by Crystal Migwans for the Ojibwe Cultural Foundation, in his home community of M’Chigeeng, Manitoulin Island. His work is included in numerous public and private collections, including the Canada Council Art Bank, Royal Ontario Museum, Ottawa Art Gallery, and the Nordamerika Native Museum, Zurich, Switzerland.

Ace has organized numerous domestic and international traveling exhibitions and continues to write and publish extensively on Aboriginal contemporary art.

Every weekend throughout the summer, Ace can be found traveling throughout Canada and the USA with his extended powwow family dancing on the powwow trail.

Kuntor~Quezal~kuautli : Aztec Dancers
Aztec dance is a traditional dance: a sacred dance ceremony, a way of prayer that uses the body movements to honour the sacred elements of the universe. This dance has been kept alive since 1300s.
Coyotl~Xiuhpainalli comes from a traditional cultural family, the people of Aztec/Nauhtl of Mexico. He has been dancing his traditional dance since he was 13 yrs old and since danced in many Aztec dance ceremonies in Mexico and United States. Coyotl has been teaching, and sharing his traditional dance in Toronto Ontario since 2005, and has formed a group called Kuntor~Quezal~kuautli alongside his wife and children, fellow dancers that have been meeting regularly promoting cultural awareness, preservation and unity. This dance ceremony has been well received, particularly with Indigenous nations as the teachings are universal. I respect and honour of the sacred elements of our Mother Earth, Water, Wind and Fire. Our goals as a family and group Kuntor~Quetzal~ kuauhtli, are to continue to keep our traditions and cultures alive, as this is a way of life, which is both healing and fun, Ometeotl.
Gabriel Ayala

A member of the Yaqui people of southern Arizona, Gabriel Ayala is at the forefront of a new generation of Native Americans making a career performing classical music. He earned a Master’s Degree in Music Performance from the University of Arizona in 1997, has taught at all educational levels from elementary through college, and serves as a competition adjudicator. Although Gabriel truly enjoys being a teacher his busy touring schedule allows him to only teach in masterclass settings.

Ayala performs regularly throughout the United States and has appeared at the Poway Center for Performing Arts, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Museum for the American Indian, and Oscar Meyer Theater in Madison, Wisconsin. In 2010, Gabriel was honored to perform at the Musical Instrument Museum in a series called “Guitar Masters”.. Not only is Gabriel recognized locally and in the United States but has had the opportunity to be the featured performer at the “Festival Internacional de la Guitarra Academica” in Venezuela with Performances in Caracas, Guarenas, Guatire and on National Public Television throughout Venezuela.

Ayala has released three self-distributed albums: “Self Titled” in 2003, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” in 2007 and “Tango!” in 2008. He is an award winning artist in several music award shows including the Native American Music Awards “Best Instrumental CD” and the Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards “Best World Music”. Gabriel received many accolades in his career among them is the honor of sharing the stage with Motown living legends The Four Tops, The Temptations, Richie Havens, Dr. John and many others.

As Ayala continues to travel throughout the United States and other countries he serves as an advocate for education for all youth while instilling his values of living a traditional lifestyle while abstaining from Alcohol, Drug and Tobacco. Gabriel believes in leading our children in the right direction through his philosophy, “Love your children, Honor your elders, and respect your women”. Gabriel wants to share the gift of music with as many people and show children that they can become whatever they dream. Gabriel currently resides in Tucson, Arizona.

Kerry Bebee
Kerry Bebee is a Missisaugan Anishnaabekwe with family background from Hiawatha First Nation, raised in Peterborough, ON. She is a graduate of Trent University and Ryerson University, finishing the midwifery programme in 1999. She has also undertaken training with various traditional Elders, midwives, and helpers towards growing in traditional knowledge around pregnancy, birth, and plant medicines. She has worked as an Aboriginal registered midwife since January 2000 both in Ontario and Northern Manitoba. She has also worked with the Indigenous Performance programme through Trent University’s Indigenous Studies program and Nozhem theatre. She is interim Vice President on the National Aboriginal Midwives Council and works as a midwife in Lindsay, Ontario. She is also working part-time (slowly!) on her MA at Trent University and is the mother to busy toddler Quinn Aptoo-Gizhik.

Sid Bobb

Whether he’s repelling down a waterfall or bringing indigenous stories to children across Canada on Canadian Geographic Kids, Sid Bobb puts his heart into whatever he does. Born in British Columbia, a member of the Sto:lo First Nations and a University of Toronto drama grad, Sid is now based in North Bay, Ontario, and a proud father of two. Children and their parents will recognize Sid as beloved Kids’ CBC co-host whose aim is to connect with families in a warm and interactive style that promotes healthy friendships and self-esteem.

Jimmson Bowler
Jimson’s inspiration comes from the Peterborough Petroglyphs, using the story of the /anishinaabe/ trickster /nanaaboozhoo/ as a teacher lessons and stories. Jimson creates one of a kind jewelry using recycled silver in the form of forks, spoons, knives; and cuts stones
from his own unique collection acquired over the years. His sculptural work combines traditional mediums such as bone and turquoise with discarded modern materials. Jimson takes inspiration from the traditional ways that respectfully uses all materials from mother earth and seeks to create objects that keep the stories alive, motivate us to learn the culture and realize that Aboriginal people are not relics of an ancient past.

Iroquois Lacrosse Program

Iroquois Lacrosse Program : Sharing the Gifts of the Creator’s Game
Dewa:ao gajihgwa;e is a medicine game given to the Ogwe:ho;weh (all nations) to assist with healing individuals and nations. In its purest form the game teaches young men and women abou tthe importance of teamwork, promotes active and healthy living, builds self-confidence and increases self-esteem. Kevin Sandy & Cam Bomberry from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory are coming to share their exciting program. Their teaching objectives and learning strategies includ: illustrating how Dewa:ao gajihgwa;e can assist young men and women in living and promoting healthy active lifestyles through participating in our traditional games; highlighting the educational opportunities available and stay-in-school messages; facilitating interactive skills, drills and cooperative games; showing how Lacrosse can be used by First Nations as a game to promote positive social interaction and show that everyone has the right to play; demonstrating the origins of Dewa:ao gajihgwa;e and how it came from the Creation Story; illustrating how to teach young children and youth and showing how youth can control their anger by running and playing a game.

Robin Brass

Robin Brass is a member of Peepeekisis First Nation, Treaty IV Territory, and is of Anishinaabe, Scottish, & Metis descent. She is a co-founder of Sakewewak Artists’ Collective and Sakewewak’s Storytellers’ Festival (now in it’s 10th year) as well as a frequent co-artistic director of the festival. Robin is also a recipient of the Victor Martin Lynch Staunton Award in Performance Art. She is happy to be able to travel to Anishinaabe territory and share with others at the Ode’min Giizis Festival.

Deborah Chansonneuve

Deborah Chansonneuve is an independent writer, trainer, cultural educator and active member of Ottawa’s Aboriginal community. She first worked with Robert Houle and the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective (ACC) in 2008 facilitating a two-day session on governance and strategic planning within a framework of Indigenous Knowledge. This encounter revealed a shared sense of humour, values and creative interests, and in 2010 she was invited to join the company of artists, curators, art-lovers and friends of Robert Houle who traveled to France for the opening of Paris/Ojibwa. The art of Robert Houle, the work of the ACC, and this extraordinary exhibit affirm the central role of artists in re-awakening our spirits and healing our history from the relentless ‘disappearance’ and dominance of colonialism.

Deborah’s publications include, ‘Reclaiming Connections: Understanding Residential School Trauma Among Aboriginal People ‘ and ‘Addictive Behaviours Among Aboriginal People in Canada ’. Distributed through the Aboriginal Healing Foundation, her work is used at colleges and universities in Canada and the US. Her violence prevention work with Inuit, Metis and First Nations youth through Minwaashin Lodge resulted in two widely acclaimed music videos, Love You Give and Time to Shine fusing the contemporary art of rap and hip hop with traditional teachings, pow wow dancing and throat singing.

Julia Tsitsi Chigamba

Julia Tsitsi Chigamba, master dancer, singer, and instrumentalist from Zimbabwe, grew up in the rich cultural traditions of Shona music and dance. Since 1999, Julia has performed and taught widely in the USA and Canada; she presently works and lives in Oakland. Julia is the founder of The Chinyakare Ensemble and Tawanda MuChinyakare. The organization is a bridge between cultures, tribal elders, youths and ancestors which seeks to introduce new cultural perspectives, strengthen positive aspects of heritage and expand cultural imagination.

Chaka Chikodzi

Chaka Chikodzi has lived in Peterborough for the past eight years, but was born and grew up in Zimbabwe, where his love for the arts began. Surrounded by creative people, Chaka began sculpting toys out of wire at the age of seven, a practice common in Zimbabwe where most families can’t afford to buy toys for their children. By the age of thirteen, Chaka was being mentored by his older brother in the Shona stone sculpting tradition. Shona stone sculptors carve rock from the Great Dyke, one of the world’s largest un-erupted volcanic ridges, and use only hand tools in a process that is similar to carvers from Canada’s north. Chaka came to Canada through his work as a sculptor, and has exhibited internationally in several countries. He has since settled and started a family in Peterborough, where he founded Africville Productions, an organization that creates arts and community education events, including Peterborough’s annual Black History Month celebration, and stone sculpting workshops for youth from at-risk backgrounds. He also formed The Resolutionaries in 2009, a five-piece band that plays traditional Zimbabwe Marimba music with a Canadian hybrid twist. His music and arts events have become a unique and well-loved part of Peterborough’s diverse arts community.

Sean Conway

Lead by obscure guitar picker and general troublemaker, Sean Conway, and his band are a shining example of the who’s who in the roots scene in the Kawarthas, playing an eclectic mix of honky tonk, swing, rockabilly and country. Known for his wild, hilarious and entertaining performances, Sean Conway is pure entertainment and a must see for true roots revival music.

The Country Boys

The Country Boys are some the hardest working boys on the Pow Wow Trail! Comprised of Chance White, Ferren Blair Rattlesnake, and Wilbert Roan, these boys were organized by Chance in 2009 when they placed second (to World Championship singers Northern Cree!) in a hand drumming competition at Paul Band Pow Wow in Alberta. Chance is 10 years old and is a well known Chicken dancer, Pow Wow singer and Round Dance singer. Ferren is 12 years and is from Mountain Cree (Smallboy) Camp. He has been singing and drumming since the age of 6. Wilbert Roan is a third generation apprentice helper in ceremonial teachings and is an avid pow wow participant. The Country Boys have become very well known and have many fans and supporters and continue to inspire other young boys to pick up hand drumming, powwow singing and dancing.

Samantha Crain
“I will give in to the dark clouds, and I will sing with the fog in my throat,” Crain, a Choctaw Indian, declares, her voice a mix of vulnerability and resolve, to the cantering rhythms of “Rising Sun,” the gorgeous folk-rock number that opens the album. The title track offers more of the same, except with more muscular guitars and a surging chorus.”
-The Washington Post
“Her voice is gorgeously odd — all fulsome, shape-shifting vowels that do indeed billow like fog. But while her moody country rock is full of dark themes, she rarely gives in to them: Her band plays with jaunty sweetness, shuffling and bouncing through sorghum-sticky melodies.”
-Rolling Stone
“Ms. Crain — with turquoise tights screaming out from between a beige print dress and red cowboy boots — was captivating. Her pleading, slightly distant intonation recalled early-1990s Britpop, an accent atop a voice that traverses the space between Gillian Welch and Regina Spektor.”
– New York Times
“With her whisper-soft voice, Samantha Crain has definitely made herself stand out with her EP, The Confiscation. The young singer has a voice that sounds as though Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst were crossed with Cat Power. She’s almost so quiet that the music seems to overpower her at moments, but she holds her place against the background of acoustic guitars and Dylan-esque harmonica riffs.”
-Keke Mullins, Playback

Robert Houle

Robert Houle is a member of Sandy Bay First Nation, Manitoba and currently lives and works in Toronto. Houle is a contemporary Anishnabe artist who has played a significant role in retaining and defining First Nations identity and has drawn on Western art conventions to tackle lingering aspects of colonization and its postcolonial aftermath. Relying on the objectivity of modernity and the subjectivity of post-modernity, he brings Aboriginal history into his work through the interrogation of text and photographic documents from the dominant society. He studied art history at the University of Manitoba, art education at McGill University and painting and drawing at the International Summer Academy of Fine Arts in Salzburg, Austria. Houle has been exhibiting since the early 1970’s. His most recent exhibition, the multi-media installation Paris/Ojibwa, was recently on view at the Canadian Cultural Centre in Paris and will make its North American debut at the Art Gallery of Peterborough in May 2011.

Among his many solo exhibitions are Lost Tribes, at Hood College, Maryland; Sovereignty over Subjectivity, at the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Palisade, at the Carleton University Art Gallery, Ottawa; and Anishnabe Walker Court, an intervention at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto. He has also participated in several important international group exhibitions, including Recent Generations: Native American Art from 1950 to 1987, at the Heard Museum, Phoenix; Traveling Theory, at the Jordan National Gallery, Amman, Jordan; Notions of Conflict, at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Real Fictions: Four Canadian Artists, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Australia; Tout le temps/Every Time, at the Montreal Biennale 2000 and We Come in Peace…: Histories of the Americas, at the Musée d’art Contemporain de Montréal.

Houle was curator of contemporary aboriginal art at the Canadian Museum of Civilization from 1977 to 1981 and has curated or co-curated groundbreaking exhibitions such as New Work by a New Generation, in connection with the World Assembly of First Nations at the Norman Mackenzie Art Gallery in Regina in 1982, and Land Spirit Power: First Nations at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa during the Columbus Quincentennial.

As a writer, Houle has written many essays and monographs on major contemporary First Nations and Native American artists. He also taught native studies at the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto for fifteen years mentoring a new generation of artists and curators. Houle’s considerable influence as an artist, curator, writer, educator and cultural theorist has led to his being awarded the Janet Braide Memorial Award for Excellence in Canadian Art History in 1993; the 2001 Toronto Arts Award for the Visual Arts; the Eiteljorg Fellowship in 2003; membership in the Royal Canadian Academy; distinguished Alumnus, University of Manitoba and the Canada Council International Residency Program for the Visual Arts in Paris. Additionally, Houle has served on various boards and advisory committees including those of The Art Gallery of Ontario, The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, The Aboriginal Curatorial Collective, A Space, The Power Plant and the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto.

Currently, he has returned to OCAD to lecture on indigenous abstraction in the faculty of art and is working on a group of portraits based on research done over the last three years in Paris. He has recently contributed an essay to the catalogue, The Colour of My Dreams: the Surrealist Revolution in Art, the largest exhibition of this movement ever to be presented in Canada at the Vancouver Art Gallery and plans to publish a book based on his collected writings and thoughts on contemporary Aboriginal art.

The Imbayakunas

The Imbayakunas’ music allows the listener to escape on an exotic voyage to a South American traditional Native community. Our musical intention is to share the rich sounds of the Andean regions. In Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia traditional music is the privileged expression of 20 million Quechua and 4 million Aymaras.
Our music ranges from the traditional sounds of Yarabi, San Juan, Albasos, Tinkus, Huaynos, Tobas, Taquiraris and Sayas to the more contemporary sounds of Cumbias, Bombas, Rumbas and Ballads. We play traditional Andean Native music with an infusion of Latin and European sounds. Our traditional instruments are the pan flutes, rondador, charango, drum, ronrroco and cajas. We also use newer instruments like the guitar, violin, bandolin, and bass. The mixing of these sounds allows us to expand our art.
We have been told by our audiences that our distinctive melodies speak to the heart and soul. Some of our rhythms are pensive and incorporate sounds of the natural world while others are upbeat and very danceable. The songs are sung in Spanish and also Quechua (pronounced “kee – chew – ahh”). Themes of the songs are of respect for “Pacha Mama” (mother earth in Quechua), annual Andean festivals, working overseas, love and new romance.
Our musical expression creates an environment that unites us all. The songs are interpretations of our past and the evolution of our culture into the future.

Zaccheus Jackson

As a teenager Zaccheus Jackson spent a lotta time hitching around Western Canada, falling in and out of love with all kindsa Nouns. He spent the first half of this decade battling the demons of his addiction, and accredits East Vancouver’s Spoken Word scene (and Commercial Drive itself) for giving him something worthwhile to dream about.

3-time member of the Vancouver Poetry Slam team and two-time Individual Champion who for 4 years has been working with WordPlay (a Vancouver organization dedicated to putting Spoken Word artists in high school classrooms), Zaccheus has had the opportunity to share his work and words with strangers, Friends and students from all over North America. Zaccheus is also the host of SLAM CENTRAL, New Westminster’s bi-weekly open mic/poetry slam. Currently recording his first album for East Van’s ‘Stoop Family’ record label, expect to see Zaccheus Jackson at many of Canada’s Spoken Word events and summer festivals, either as a registered performer or Guerilla Poet on a soap-box…..

Audrey Kewaquom- Caskanette
manido binashikwe comes from Saugeen Anishinabek Territory.
A Grandmother, mother and auntie who understands the role of women from an Anishinabek perspective. And educator in original worldview, a helper to those who ask and an Anishinabekwe who knows that the “old people” are the reason we live on.

Kaha:wi Dance Theatre

Under Santee Smith’s Artistic Direction, KDT has created and produced: Here On Earth at Harbourfront Centre Theatre; The Threshing Floor at Nozhem Theatre; A Constellation of Bones at the Enwave Theatre; Woman In White solo; Sacred Spring; Here On Earth tours national and international; A Story Before Time co-production with The Banff Centre for the Arts premiere production and tours; A Soldier’s Tale at The Great Hall, Hamilton Place; Fragmented Heart: Mixed Program including Tripped Up Blues (Aboriginal youth commission) at the Canada Dance Festival, National Arts Centre.

Kaha:wi Reviews:
The women’s movements were graceful and rhythmic: they moved as if they were channeling an elemental current. As they danced, their costumes flowed and waved to accentuate their synchronized movements. The soundscape was superb: it created a sonic environment that made me feel as if I was immersed in the sound of the dance. Kaha:wi was choreographed by Santee Smith, a Mohawk artist who founded Kaha:wi Dance Company to increase awareness and understanding of Aboriginal culture. Judging from the contemporary Aboriginal dance work she created and danced in for Dusk Dances, Smith is a choreographer to watch out for. Vancouver Sun, July 2009

Smith’s evening-length celebration of Mother Earth, finds emotional resonance in its evocation of traditional Iroquois cultural symbols, including the archetypal ancestor spirit, acknowledgment of the powerful four directions, honoring of elders and celebration of the continuity of life as a cycle from birth to death to afterlife and rebirth…Smith and her dancers carry their upper torsos responsive to breath and gravity, connecting them deeply, spiritually, to Mother Earth. Washington Post, 2005

Ravishing mix of styles and spirits. Her ambitious, full-length Kaha:wi was awarded a standing ovation by an enthusiastic audience, while focusing on a dance artist who can mount classy productions with substance…In short, Kaha:wi succeeds because it walks the fine line between a genuine spiritual experience that is also ravishing in its visual components. Globe and Mail, 2004

Important concepts in work include:

Continuity – The continuity of Aboriginal culture over time. As contemporary artists we are carrying forth culture in our own communities and in the mainstream. Therefore, acknowledging that Native culture is alive, thriving and evolving. My role as an artist is to place continuity over preservation.

Creativity – We live in a creative living universe so there exists the limitless potential to create.

Complexity – Celebrating and acknowledging the diversity that exists from Nation to Nation, from artist to artist and the complexity of expressing the complex nature of our own humanity including emotionality, spirituality, individuality and community.

Communication: There exist many levels of communication within my work. I attempt to communicate with audiences in the case of concert dance, with the natural world and with Spirit of both dancers and audiences.

Santee Smith

Santee Smith: B.P.E, BA Psychology, MA: Dance is from the Mohawk Nation, Turtle Clan and lives on Six Nations Reserve, Ontario. She is the founding Artistic Director and Choreographer for Kaha:wi Dance Theatre. She holds a Masters Degree in Dance from York University and has spent most of her life committed to dance and creative expression. Santee attended the National Ballet School (1982-88). She expanded her knowledge of movement with a Kinesiology degree from McMaster University. In 1996 she began creating her own choreography and developing a movement style that reflects who she is as an artist. Santee creates, produces and presents her choreographic work nationally and internationally.
Santee is the recipient of several awards including the Chalmers Award, K.M. Hunter Award for Dance, Canada Council’s Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for the most outstanding mid-career artist in the field of Dance and the first-ever John Hobday Award for Arts Management.

She was a featured choreographer for the CanDance Network’s: Indigenous Dancelands I and II with performances at New Dance Horizons (Regina), University of Lethbridge, Peterborough New Dance, Tangente (Montreal) and Dancing on the Edge Festival (Vancouver) and the Vancouver International Dance Festival.
Santee is currently in production for TransMigration based on the murals of shaman artist Norval Morrisseau to be premiered at The Fleck Theatre, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto in April 2011.

My work is a response and a reflection of the world in which I live. Through dance I am able to express my dreams, visions and stories historical and contemporary.

Important concepts include:

Continuity – The continuity of Aboriginal culture over time. As contemporary artists we are carrying forth culture in our own communities and in the mainstream. Therefore, acknowledging that Native culture is alive, thriving and evolving. My role as an artist is to place continuity over preservation.

Creativity – We live in a creative living universe so there exists the limitless potential to create.

Complexity – Celebrating and acknowledging the diversity that exists from Nation to Nation, from artist to artist and the complexity of expressing the complex nature of our own humanity including emotionality, spirituality, individuality and community.

Communication: There exist many levels of communication within my work. I attempt to communicate with audiences in the case of concert dance, with the natural world and with Spirit of both dancers and audiences.

William Kingfisher

William Kingfisher is a member of the Chippewas of Rama First Nation at Rama/Mnjikaning, Ontario. He is a Ph.D. candidate in the Indigenous Studies Department at Trent University. His dissertation explores the connection between landscapes, being-in-the-world, and contemporary Native art. He has curated two exhibitions for the Ode’min Giizis art festival in collaboration with the Art Gallery of Peterborough. In 2009 he curated nogajiwanong: land stories community: ten native artists from the Peterborough region. In 2010 he curated ayaandagon: outdoor art installations in an Anishinaabe garden which explored the relationship between the land, art and stories.

Missy Knott

David Maracle

David R Maracle (Tehenneia’kwe:tarons) was born the seventh son for Andrew C. Maracle (Mohawk, Turtle Clan) and Lillian J. Maracle (Scottish, Bruce Clan) and lived his first 12 years of life on the Akwesasne Mohawk Reserve.

During his music career, David’s accolades include such credits as: five time Canadian Aboriginal Music Award winner; two gold records globally for his album “Spirit Flutes; five global record deals; Best Instrumental Album from the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Awards; and, playing with Tim Rice (Phantom of the Opera, Lion Kin) at the Opening of the Sydney Olympic Games.

Not only a talented singer and song-writer, David has also mastered many other instruments, including the Iroquoian and Celtic flutes, native hand drums and many other percussion instruments. With no formal training in the Arts or in Music, David believes his talents are a gift from the Creator, which he gives thanks for daily and never takes them for granted.

Melanie McCall

Melanie McCall is a local Peterborough resident who is a practicing artist over the last 10 years in and around the Peterborough Area and has recently returned from a three month internship in Rajasthan. This is her third year working with the Ode’min Giizis Festival and is overjoyed at the opportunity to spend another summer with such talented people and express gratitude to all those involved. Her work is influenced by her textile background and extends from mixed media to fabric, clay, plastics and wood. She has had the pleasure of designing for many local artists and theatre works. With two large sculptures under her belt, embarking on a third in collaboration with Douglas Witt is sure to be an achievement not to be missed, literally, as the work should rise to 12 feet tall.

David McIntosh

David McIntosh is Toronto-based writer, curator, educator, and visual artist who has lived and worked extensively in Canada, Cuba, Mexico, Argentina and Peru. He has curated film, video and new media programs for the Toronto International Film Festival, Cinematheque Ontario, the Hot Docs Documentary Festival, Nuit Blanche Toronto, the National Gallery of Cuba, the National Gallery of Argentina, and the Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires (MALBA). He is an award winning documentary film producer (Tina in Mexico, 2002) and dramatic screenwriter (Stryker, 2004). His critical writing on film, video and new media has been published widely in books and periodicals. His recent critical texts have focused on a range of art, design and technology subjects.

He holds a PhD in Communications and Culture Studies and is a Professor of Media Studies at the Ontario College of Art & Design in Toronto where his primary research fields are: globalization and the political-economies of audiovisual spaces; network theories and practices; new media narrativity; mobile locative media; digital documents; Latin American media studies; and queer media. In 2008, McIntosh was the recipient of the prestigious Ontario College of Art & Design Award for a Career of Distinguished Research and Creation. He was artist in residence at the Amauta New Media Centre in Cuzco, Peru in 2007, where he researched a new media project based in mobile media uses in the informal economy of Cuzco, Peru, which developed into his most recent artwork, QOSQO LLIKA (2010), a mobile locative distributed documentary to intervene in the perception and function of public urban space.

Morning Star River

MorningStar River was established in 1998. The group’s roots go back to the neighborhoods of Toronto, which in no way prevented them from learning their Culture. MorningStar River believes in their culture dearly and tries to live that life to the fullest of their potential.

MorningStar River has been through a lot of struggles individually and collectively. Yet they still remain focused on their life’s ambition, singing & helping their communities. Northern style or more popularly referred to as; original or old-style has been the preferred singing style of MorningStar River. Getting back to the heart of singing is an aspiration of the group.

Learning to sing in the urban setting has been a struggle in itself but MorningStar River has been resilient and drawn inspiration from the available resources in the city of Toronto. Listening to Traditional Pow wow songs on tapes from the library, selected CD’s bought at celebrations and
learning from the very few teachers that were accessible amongst the Native Community of Toronto, MorningStar River has accomplished the responsibility of passing down and preserving their heritage.

Joseph Naytowhow

Joseph Naytowhow is an Aboriginal storyteller and musician from Sturgeon Lake First Nation. In his performances, he incorporates gentle humour, Aboriginal song and the wonderful stories of his people. He has recorded numerous CDs including one with Metis artist, Cheryl L’Hirondelle Waynotêw. As a child, Joseph heard the early morning drumming of his grandfather (Big) John Naytowhow as he greeted the sun with prayer and song. The drumming created Joseph’s sensitivity towards ritual music, the foundation for the ‘kayas nikamowin’ (long ago songs) he composes and sings in Cree and English. Joseph was storyteller-in-residence with the Meadow Lake Tribal Council for many years. In addition, he has acted on television and with various theatre groups. Joseph is a gifted storyteller and musician with more than twenty years of performance experience. For the past decade, Naytowhow has been giving presentations to students and adults. He travels to schools, libraries, organizations and cultural gatherings to share legends and trickster tales.

Old Mush Singers

Our name is Ojihgwagayoh (pronounced OH Jee Gwa Ga Yo in Cayuga). Literal translation is “Old Mush”. We also go by the “Old Mush” Singers. We are based out of the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. What the name signifies is a cultural tool we use in our ceremonies and sports. Sometimes a ceremony calls for men to be on opposite but responding sides of the ceremony or a game being played like lacrosse, ding-ball, tug-of-war, soccer, or snow-snake (some of which can be both ceremony and game). Old Mush refers to men who have children while Young Mush refers to men who do not have children. Most of our original roster of singers all had children. We’re told that men didn’t really start to learn how to sing until they started their family.

We are mostly referred to as a singing group, but we are actually a Singing Society, with rules, traditions, leadership, and responsibilities. We are part of a National Singing Society that includes Singing Societies from Hodinosio:ni (you might know that as Iroquois) communities on both sides of the American/Canadian border. These Societies are benevolent in nature and work for the benefit of their communities. Old Mush was started nearly 20 years ago and have had over 75 men come through the group.
The Old Mush Singers have produced one CD of Hodinosio:ni Social Songs and are about to release their second compilation as a double disk.

Thomas Olszewski
I am from Rama First Nations. I am currently residing and working as both caterer and artist in Peterborough Ont. My latest work is a series of paintings that range from 12″x16″ to 36`x48″, in which I call “Tribal Death”. My hopes with these, multi-media works on board, are to bring about awareness and discussion of the continued systematic destruction of a race of people. I attempt to use traditional and historical elements within a western post-modern aesthetics.

Louise Profeit-LeBlanc
Louise is from the Nacho Nyak Dun First Nation in northeastern Yukon. She has come from a long line of storytellers and is now the keeper of many of these stories of the ancient and not so distant past. For 15 years she worked with her people all over the Yukon to ensure that the oral histories and stories of the First Nations people were recorded and transcribed for posterity. Cofounder of the Yukon International Storytelling festival, Yukon and the Society of Yukon Artists of Native Ancestry, Louise has attempted to ensure the voice of her people is heard and will be protected for the future generations. This voice and information is a gift that her people must share for the betterment of the world. She presently works at the Canada Council for the Arts in Ottawa, where she has migrated to with her husband and her grandson to serve the needs of many Aboriginal artists of Canada and abroad.

As well as being a storyteller and a writer, she is a painter, a birch bark basket maker and beader.

Red Pepper Spectacle

Hundreds of artists and thousands of community members have worked with Red Pepper toward individual expression, collaborative endeavors and community celebrations. Numerous individuals and organizations have learned and implemented methods and ideologies with the guidance and ongoing support of experienced Red Pepper practitioners. Our current staff consists entirely of First Nations youth who have trained and worked with Red Pepper and/or its partners over the years.

These talented artists have facilitated large-scale engagements in a wide variety of media including story creation, mask making, movement, mosaic, sculpture, pottery, printmaking, painting and drawing, magazine creation and publishing, puppetry, digital media design and technology, photography, recording and music creation, video creation and production, textiles, theatre design and community-wide festivals.

Red Pepper programming enables a sense of belonging, creates new productive uses of underutilized spaces, encourages creative problem solving, develops leadership and decision-making skills, provides space for cross-cultural dialogue, encourages collaboration in a democratic creative processes and provides a safe haven to learn new skills and express oneself.
For more info about Ode’min Giizis’ Puppet partners please visit

The Resolutionaries

This Marimba band is a hot new blend of hybrid Zimbabwean music sets dance floors ablaze and is hailed for bringing people together. Marimba is a traditional Zimbabwean instrument that combines sweet melodies with African rhythms. The Resolutionaries Marimba Music is a mix of age-old African tunes, Modern innovations and TransAtlantic “livasporic” inspiration.

The Resolutionaries are:

Chaka Chikodzi is new to playing music, but brings to the band his extensive love of African music and knowledge of marimba. Chaka is indigenous to Zimbabwe and came to Canada in 2001, since then he has started a family and developed his stone sculpting and arts promotion company, Africville Productions.
Anna is becoming known as the “marimba queen” in Peterborough, and is also the big sister of King Julian. She is a
multi-talented musician who grew up in Peterborough and is a recent graduate of Trent University, looking forward to starting her teaching degree this fall.
King Julian is a 20 year-old who started playing marimba with the Resolutionaries spontaneously when his sister brought home a marimba to his living room. He is entering his second year at Trent University and is passionate about environmental issues and outdoor activity.
Howard Gibbs was born-and-raised in the fine country of England and moved to Canada at an early age, and loves the feel of African drum beats. Howard is a proud father, and is also co-owner of local beloved video store, Have You Seen.

Gerard Sagassige
Ahnii N Boozhoo! Since I was young I’ve wandered around Turtle Island and beyond. I am Ojibwe of the great Mississauga Nation and registered member of Curve Lake #35 First Nation. I am a proud dad, step dad and grand dad. I have facilitated workshops and seeded cultural language camps through out Indigenous territories and have been a spiritual advocate for well over 30 yrs. Currently I am employed as NNADAP worker on Curve Lake #35 First Nation

Paul Shilling

Paul Shilling lives and works on his home reserve of Chippewas of Rama First Nation at Rama/Mnjikaning, Ontario. He studied art at Georgian College in the early 1990’s, but is primarily self-taught and informed through life experience. He has had numerous exhibitions throughout Ontario including the Indian and Inuit Art Center in Ottawa in 2005, the Blue Mountain Foundation for the Arts in Collingwood in 2010, and The Wellington Gallery in Aurora in 2010. For Paul, painting is a medium for healing, for celebrating the spirit, and it is a gift. It is an opportunity to explore and understand my place and relationship within the circle of creation. He writes that, “there are bundles that we talk about: the pipe, the drum, the rattle, certain medicines, and our children. These are all sacred, but I believe that the most sacred bundle of all is the little girl and the little boy that lives inside of us. So the healing begins, the brushes begin to move, eyes begin to open, the fire is rekindled, the old self dies, and the new one arises. Heal the child within and life becomes sacred. Living begins to mean something again”

Leanne Simpson

Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a writer, activist, and scholar of Michi Saagiik Nishnaabeg ancestry with family roots in Alderville First Nation. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of Manitoba, is an Adjunct Professor in Indigenous Studies at Trent University and an instructor at the Centre for World Indigenous Knowledge, Athabasca University. She has recently published two edited books, Lighting the Eighth Fire: The Liberation, Resurgence and Protection of Indigenous Nations (2008, Arbeiter Ring), and This is An Honour Song: Twenty Years Since the Barricades (with Kiera Ladner, 2010, Arbeiter Ring). Her third book, Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back: Stories of Nishnaabeg Re-Creation, Resurgence and a New Emergence will be launched at Ode’min Giizis 2011. Leanne lives in Nogojiwanong with her partner where she homeschools her two children, Nishna and Minowewebeneshiinh. She is currently a co-director of Wii-Kendimiing Nishinaabemowin Saswaansing, a language nest for Nishnaabeg families.

Tonto’s Nephews

Tonto’s Nephews is an improv troupe made up of Herbie Barnes, Sid Bobb, Craig Lauzon and Michaela Washburn. They are committed to providing light comedy from a Native perspective.

Performing nationally and internationally, Tonto’s Nephews has taken part in such festivals as: The Del Close Marathon in New York, Chicago’s Improv Festival, Toronto’s International Improv Festival and Rapid Fire’s Improvaganza in Edmonton. Tonto’s Nephews has also placed second, two years in a row, at Toronto’s Globehead Competition.

In October of 2004, they collectively wrote their first 2 act play entitled “Ever Sick”, which was featured in Native Earth’s Weesageechak Begins to Dance Festival; and have been guests on the television shows Buffalo Tracks and Bingo and a Movie.

Beyond performing, Tonto’s Nephews have also traveled to various communities including: North Bay, Fort Frances and Ohsweken, Ontario, providing professional instruction in the development of leadership skills, communication, theatre skills, improvisation and empowerment.

Twoshees Andahee

Paul O’Sullivan, Lisa Merchant & Jan Caruana
Paul O’Sullivan is an actor, comedian, director and writer. Selected theatre credits include “Steven Harper, The Musical”, for The Second City, “Harvest”, for New Stages Theatre, “Yichud /Seclusion” as part of the “Next Stage” theatre festival, and as Franz Liebkind in “The Producers, The New Mel Brooks Musical”. Paul was an early writer and collaborator on “The Drowsy Chaperone” a show that went on to win several Tony awards, including “Best Musical”. A veteran of the legendary comedy club “The Second City”, Paul collaborated on 4 original shows at Toronto’s Old Firehall, and directed the hit shows “Old Wine, New Bottles” and “Pinata Full of Bees”, for which he received a Canadian Comedy Award. His second Canadian Comedy Award he shares with fellow members of the popular sketch comedy group “Skippy’s Rangers”. He starred in “The Joe Blow Show” a Gemini nominated Comedy Network special he created and produced with Linda Kash.

Lisa Merchant is a three time Canadian Comedy Award winner. For 10 years she created and produced Toronto’s longest running comedy festival, March of Dames. Some of Lisa’s television credits include: Train 48, Listen Missy, Go Girl!, Just For Laughs Improv Championships, to name a few. Lisa was a founding member of the comedy troupe, The Chumps, who improvised a weekly radio show on the CBC. She performed in Monkey Toast, the live improvised talk show for 7 years and various improvised shows at Bad Dog Theatre. Lisa currently performs in TheatreSports and in the monthly improvised show Impros vs. Joes at the Gordon Best Theatre in Peterborough.

Jan Caruana is a Canadian Comedy Award winning improviser, who has performed across North America. Her favorite improv credits include About an Hour (Best of Fringe), the critically acclaimed Sass and the City and the Canadian Comedy Award Winning shows Monkey Toast and Show Stopping Number (which she also directed). She does shows regularly around Toronto and has performed all over Canada and the U.S. Jan is also a part of the Gemini Award nominated writing team on YTV’s That’s So Weird and is a contributing writer to the internet sensation But her best work is done on Twitter.

A Tribe Called Red

In 2008, DJ’s NDN, Frame and Bear Witness founded A Tribe Called Red. In 2010, they added 2 time Candian DMC champ, DJ Shub to the crew. Electric Pow Wow is a bi-monthly club night dedicated to showcasing Aboriginal DJ talent and Native urban culture and is aimed at creating a space for Aboriginal people. These three veterans of the Ottawa music scene come together to create an eclectic sound made up of a wide variety of musical styles ranging from Hip-Hop, Dance Hall, Electronica, and their own mash-up of club and Pow Wow music. You can catch Electric Pow Wow every other month on the second Saturday at Babylon nightclub in Ottawa, Canada.!/atribecalledred

Douglas Witt

Born in Peterborough Ontario, Douglas now lives in Yellowknife, NWT. Since 1993, his masks have been collected by Canadian arts enthusiasts and he has produced many masks for both stage and film productions. Mythology, story, the land, dreams and spiritual aspects to life often inspire Doug’s work. As a Métis artist, he has found cultural influences and story from Indigenous peoples to be meaningful in the creation of his masks.

Douglas is the found of the School of Witt Mask Studio and was a co-creator of the Calgary based project entitled “This is My City”” that garnered critical acclaim. He has worked as an independent contractor in Toronto for 7 years working in the movie, theatre and TV industry as a FX make-up/fine artist. Some of the places his mask work has been used are the world famous Stratford Theatre Ontario, Dragonfly Prop Studio, Cuppa Coffee Animation Studio, The Montreal Circus School, and the Pantages Theatre. He as also conducted play shops at the ROM, AGO, and for the Second City in Toronto. His work can be seen in such Canadian show as Relic Hunter, Earth Final Contact, Mutant X, on the Daily Planet, Discovery Channel, and Sin City.

Alice Williams

Doug Williams

Among other responsibilities, Doug oversees the cultural component of the PhD program in Indigenous Studies at Trent University. A member of the Mississaugas of Curve Lake First Nation, Doug was one of the first graduates of Indigenous Studies at Trent in 1972. He is very much interested in the ongoing study of Indigenous Knowledge in the academy and how that knowledge is applied at the community level. He is also concerned with the loss of language. Doug is a Pipe carrier, a Sweat Lodge keeper and a ceremony leader. He considers himself a trapper, a hunter, a fisher and a warrior. Doug is a powerful storyteller who loves to share a joke and a lesson.

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