Native American Theatre
Headquartered in Bozeman, Montana, The American Indian Institute and Traditional Circle of Indian Elders and Youth continues along a wisdom-guided journey into mutual respect; following the Elders counsel that above all else, respect for self, respect for others and respect for Mother Earth must guide our lives.
Contemporary Contexts Forum at the Kanatsiohareke Mohawk Community
This past fall I received the singular privilege of being invited to attend the Ancient Voices-Contemporary Contexts Forum sponsored by the American Indian Institute at the Kanatsiohareke Mohawk Community in upstate New York
We have gifts and knowledge to share with the world, but we can’t do this if we have not been healed of our anger from the stories of grief told to us by our ancestors. That healing will be the purpose of the gathering of condolence.” - Tekaronianeken (Jake Swamp), Wolf Clan of the Mohawk Nation, October 2010.
The Elder Tekaroniaken Jake Swamp passed on to the spirit world on October 2010. He left us behind to fulfill the instructions of our ancestors. To honor his dream, a gathering of Indigenous leaders, women, youth, and elders from Abya Yala, the Americas, took place on the banks of the Mississippi River between June 18th–24th, 2012, so people can receive condolence, strength, and inner peace to reaffirm their right to walk the same way as our ancestors once did..
This article begins with a quote by Hanay Geiogamah, (Kiowa/Delaware), Director of Project HOOP: “Let me try to stimulate your imagination. There are 512 or so Indian tribes in the United States today. If each one were to establish and sponsor its own theater company, and produce just one new work based on its history, culture, and heritage, we would have 512 new works for the theater. And if only half of them were to do this – in some fantastical dream-come-true – then there would be 256 new Indian plays. The theater can help us in so many good ways. Theater is one of the most accessible of the performing arts, and we should begin immediately to create new Indian theaters.”