Spirit of the Drum concert unites performers from four nations
Posted by Kim Wheeler, SCENE Producer | Wednesday March 20, 2013
Shy-Anne Hovorka performs March 20 at Spirit of the Drum Unity Fest. (Cat Larson-Zechner)
The indigenous people of Turtle Island have a unique relationship with their drum that is connected to the land.
—Brandi Dueck, organizer
The Idle No More Movement saw a lot of activity during December with round dances in very public places around Winnipeg. Recently, the movement has been less visible in the public eye but that doesn't mean it has died.
At the opening of the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards, drummers from the four directions opened the show. On March 20, Spirit of the Drum, a Unity Fest event in collaboration with Idle No More takes that one step further inviting Taiko drums, African Drums, Celtic Drums and the First Nation host drum group Red Shadow Singers for a night of live performances that includes APCMA female entertainer of the year Shy-Anne Hovorka and Winnipeg's Indian City.
"The beat of the drum is a sound that can be recognized by most, if not all cultures. The indigenous people of Turtle Island have a unique relationship with their drum that is connected to the land," said Brandi Dueck, the organizer of Spirit of the Drum.
"Our people recognize [the drum] as Mother Earth's heart beat. When we unify the sounds of these drums on March 20th, the first day of spring, we are sharing a powerful message of peace and unity," said Dueck.
"I think it is important that we show our unity for each other, and grow as a unit with all cultures here in Canada," said Shy-Anne Hovorka, who will be travelling in from her home in Thunder Bay, Ontario
Hovorka is also a music teacher and will be bringing three of her vocal students with her. But teaching her students to sing is not what it is all about for her.
"This is my way of showing my students that music is not just about singing. We have an opportunity and obligation to share positive messages," she said. Hovorka is currently a finalist for the CBC Music Searchlight, a contest looking for Canada's next big musical act.
Dueck says the public is encouraged to bring their drums and participate. "People bringing their own drums can expect to hear the uniqueness of each distinct traditional drum. The most powerful part of the event will be when we unite by the Spirit of the Drum."
The Idle No More movement was started to protest Bill C-45 which includes changes to the Indian Act without the promised consultations with the Aboriginal community. And to the Navigation Protection Act that left 97 lakes, 62 rivers and the three coastal ocean areas in Canada protected.
Spirit of the Drum is on at the Marlborough Hotel on March 20 from 7-10 pm.