Shaman's Journey (Chinook Winds 1997)

Banff Centre for the Arts - Indigenous Arts Program

1997, 23:09 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 2031.06

Shaman's Journey, choreographed by Guest Choreographer Raoul Trujillo, is a work originally commissioned by the Asia Society in New York City in 1988. It was subsequently performed by Alejandro Ronceria in Toronto. In 1997, the choreography was adapted to accommodate six dancers from the Chinook Winds Aboriginal Dance Program. The re-creation of this work is to recognize and bring into prominence works existing in the contemporary Aboriginal Dance repertoire, bringing previous works of significance to a new generation of Aboriginal dancers.

"Shaman's Journey... is about seeing into other worlds besides our own. As Aboriginal people we have always centred around the concept of taking journeys, or risks, that help us to find ways to connect the earth and the universe." This dance piece, based on the Traditional Grass Dance, is a ceremonial tribute to Inuit/Siberian/Oriental and Native traditions using regalia, chants, and contemporary movements to stylize this shamanic journey.

Chinook Winds is perhaps the most active and creative dance study and performance program for Natives in the hemisphere. The Aboriginal Arts Program and the intention of the Chinook Winds Aboriginal Dance program was to create a safe working space, build community and respect for the individual and their process of learning.

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