LARGEST GATHERING OF ARCTIC PERFORMING ARTISTS
MARCH 14-19 IN IQALUIT, NUNAVUT
March 9, 2016– IQALUIT (Nunavut, Canada) –The Qaggiq Performing Arts Summit March 14-19 in Iqaluit will bring together over 50 performers from across Canada’s Arctic to consult and learn new skills, culminating in a public theatre performance. The Summit is part of Qaggiq, a strategy to support Arctic performing artists and winner of the prestigious Arctic Inspiration Prize this year. The project is led by the Nunavut non-profit society Qaggiavuut. “Arctic performing artists are isolated from one another,” said Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, the Chairperson of the Qaggiavuut Society and a popular storyteller and dancer. “It’s difficult to collaborate and to learn new skills.” Nunavut, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2019, is the only province or territory in Canada that does not have a performing arts centre.
Qaggiavuut has been holding performing arts Summits since 2013. This will be its first Summit to bring together artists from regions outside of Nunavut including the NWT, Nunavik (Northern Quebec) and Nunatsiavut (Northern Labrador) “Arctic culture is rich with emotion and stories. This year we’ll focus on theatre and learn ways to create engaging and exciting spectacles,” said Ellen Hamilton, one of the Summit organizers. A public performance of the theatre workshop will be held Saturday, March 19th at 8 p.m. at Iqaluit’s Frobisher Inn. The performance, entitled Kiviuq Returned, is loosely based on a wellknown Inuit legend. “The workshop will be an allegory of trauma and loss, light and darkness and the struggles when we lose touch with our culture, our language and our stories”, said Qaggiavuut Vice-Chairperson and Nunavut actor and producer, Vinnie Karetak. The performing artists attending the Summit will work together all week, experimenting with stories, lighting, makeup, choreography, music and acting.
Some of the country’s foremost northern actors and musicians will participate in the Summit including Igloolik’s Susan Avinga, Madeline Ivalu, Natar Ungalaq, Pakak Innuksuk, Carol Kunnuk and Zacharius Kunnuk, Iqaluit’s Miali Buscemi, Pond Inlet’s Lamech Kadloo and Sheena Akoomalik, Arviat’s Lois Suluk, Nunavik spoken word artist Taqralik Partridge, throat singers Evie Mark and Pauyungie Nutaraaluk, Nain’s Jennie Williams. Kugluktuk fiddler Gustin Adjun, Iqaluit’s Inuksuk Drum Dancers and many others!