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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


November 2, 2002 - Issue 73


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Canadian Aboriginal Festival and Music Awards


Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards Stage

If a culture is defined by its music then the North American Aboriginal community is both rich and proud. On Thursday November 28, the aboriginal community pays tribute to a diverse collection of talent that runs the gamut from traditional drum songs to rap and hip hop.

Both traditional and contemporary aboriginal artists are celebrated during the awards ceremony in which dozens of unique musical categories are recognized. From Best Artist to Best Video to Best Spoken Word, the Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards honors the best of the best from across North America.

Celebrate the rich cultural heritage of the Aboriginal people and discover the exciting new talent and musical styles that will define native culture for future generations. Get your tickets now for this gala night of entertainment and accolades.

Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards PerformersThe Canadian Aboriginal Festival is a multi-faceted event. It is Canada's largest Aboriginal festival and one of Toronto's most successful festivals. It is an exciting and welcoming event for everyone!!

A Cross Cultural Family Event: The Canadian Aboriginal Festival is a unique opportunity for everyone to share and learn about North America's Aboriginal peoples. The festival is designed to offer something for everyone. All ages will enjoy the many activities of the festival.

All events will be held at the SkyDome Stadium, Toronto

The order of events listed is according to the schedule:

Thursday, November 28th:
Economic Development Conference:
The two-day Economic Development Conference gets underway on Thursday morning of the 28th in the Renaissance Toronto Hotel at SkyDome, Northern Lights Ballroom. The conference title is "Building the Aboriginal Cultural Industries".

Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards:
This year marks the fourth annual Music Awards show as part of the festival. The gala presentation show, honouring the finalists and winners, will be held at the SkyDome on the Thursday evening.

VIP Gathering:
Immediately following the Awards show, a VIP gathering will be held back stage. The gathering will include all of the musicians, representatives from the various funding agencies, representatives from the major record companies and others.

Friday, November 29th:
Little Traditional DancerEconomic Development Conference:
Day Two of the Conference

Education Day:
Up to 7,000 elementary school children will be in attendance on Friday to learn about Aboriginal heritage and culture as taught by Aboriginal instructors. This year the number of students will be capped at 7,000. Schedule time is 9:30am to 2:00pm.

Education Day (Adult sessions):
In response to requests an afternoon Teaching Circle will be held to accommodate high schools and adults. This session will deal with topics around various issues and will be more in depth than the earlier session. Schedule time is 3:00pm to 6:00pm.

Fund Raising Dinner and Concert:
An evening concert featuring the Canadian Aboriginal Music Award orchestra, some finalists, winners and others will be held on the Friday evening to entertain those attending the Fund Raising dinner. Funds raised will be used to further expand and improve the festival.

Saturday, November 30th:
Market Area:
The large market area with more than 200 booths opens to the public on Saturday and Sunday morning at 10:00 am and will remain open until 10:00 p.m. Saturday and 6:00 p.m. on Sunday. Authentic Aboriginal arts and crafts, traditional foods and information booths make up the market area.

Lacrosse Skills Competition:
Saturday morning will be the skills competition for Ontario Lacrosse Association players. Young amateur players will compete for the Ontario title in various skills such as shooting, agility, passing, etc. Schedule time is 8:30am to 11:30am.

Fashion Shows:
Fashion Shows will start Saturday morning at 11:00 a.m. with shows scheduled throughout Saturday and Sunday. Fashions, from some of Canada's leading Aboriginal designers, will show both contemporary and traditional designs.

Traditional Teachings:
A special and intimate area will again be set up to afford visitors the opportunity to hear from some of the most respected Elders, Spiritual Teachers and Healers. Traditional Teachings will be scheduled throughout Saturday and Sunday.

Main Stage Concert:
Visitors to the festival on Saturday will be entertained with a free concert starting at 12 noon.

Grand Entry:
1:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. is the start of the "Star" Pow Wow. Up to 1,000 dancers are expected to participate again this year. In addition to the dancers, veterans, Eagle Staff carriers, Flag carriers from various Aboriginal nations, and foreign countries are expected to participate.
We expect participation in the Grand Entry will exceed 1,500. (please see special note)

Immediately following the Grand Entry, which is the official start of the Pow Wow, inter-tribal and competitive dances will run all day until 10:00 p.m.

Performing Arts:
The music tent and performance tent will start with their first programs at about 11:00 a.m. and run all day Saturday and Sunday.

The music tent will feature selected musicians from across Canada. The performance tent will house presentations and skits by various artists from across Canada; they will include skits on legends, contemporary dance, literary readings and more.

Visual Arts:
A special art exhibit highlighting emerging Aboriginal artists will be open to the public all day Saturday and Sunday. A number of Canada's leading established artists will also be a part of the exhibit.

Little Traditional DancerSunday, December 1st:
Main Stage Concert:
A free main stage concert will be held at 11:00 a.m. The format will be very similar to the concert on Saturday but will feature other Aboriginal entertainers. The Music Awards orchestra will be part of the Sunday concert.

Two series of workshops will be held; one for the general public on various traditional performing arts and the other for those interested in the staging and presentation of Aboriginal events.

Grand Entry:
The Sunday Grand Entry will start at 12:00 noon. In addition to the Grand Entry participants on the Saturday Grand Entry, we will be honouring the Ontario Aboriginal team who competing in the Indigenous games. We expect well over 100 of the 700 athletes in full uniform. Total number in the Grand Entry is expected to exceed 1,500.

Awarding of Pow Wow prizes:
The prizes for the "Star" Pow Wow along with trophies for the winners of the various categories will start at 4:30 p.m. The event wraps up at 6:00 p.m.

Special Note:

This year's Pow Wow will be dedicated to "Peace Keepers" including all Aboriginal Peace Keepers, the Canadian Peace Keeping Unit and Peace Keeping units of other United Nations countries. We expect ten to fifteen foreign countries will participate with colour parties.

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