9th Annual Talking Stick Festival

Dates and Venue 21-28 Feb | Roundhouse Community Centre, Vancouver

Reviewer Ed Farolan

I was touched by the oratory of one of the First Nations elders from Squamish who explained the symbolism of the Talking Stick. He said that when one holds the Talking Stick, he talks from the heart. He also explained how all of us are aboriginal in our roots, because indeed, we all come from the same Creator.

Aboriginal artists, established and emerging, national and international, performed live music, dance, theatre, multi-media storytelling, and performance art in the gala night presentation last Feb 21st.. Co-presented by the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad, the Festival continues till the 28th with all kinds of shows. I was impressed by the Polynesian and Maori trio, Pacific Curls, who entertained us with their Polynesian and Maori music.

Another exciting group to watch is Red Sky under Artistic Director Sandra Laronde whose show Tono was presented at the Vancouvr Playhouse last week and received a warm reception for its creativity.

I'm happy that today, aboriginal peoples of the world are highly respected. I still remember the 1950s and 60s when it was normal to insult aboriginals and blacks. The 21st century is a breakthrough of all racial barriers, and it is not only political incorrectness that is at stake, but more so, cultural awareness and respect for all races and peoples of the world.

And witnessing the dances and rituals of the aboriginal peoples of Canada, one gets the feeling that this is indeed the beginning of an understanding of what we as human beings are all about.

For more info on remaining performances of the Festival, click on Full Circle Performance.

. © 2010 Ed Farolan