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Singing and Dancing - First Nations Culture at Highland Creek Library

Yesterday, Dad and I went to Highland Creek Library to see the presentation on "Singing and Dancing - First Nations Culture. The Native Canadian Centre of Toronto performed dances, songs and drums.  They also told us a bit about the history about the dances and about the Grandfather Drum.

I'm so sorry that I can't remember the names of the people who did the presentation.

We learnt about the Jingle Dress dance and the Women's Traditional Dance.

This lady is dressed in a "Jingle Dress" which has a lot of metal cones which make a 'jingle' sound when she dances.

This lady showed us the Traditional Women's Dance.
The women form a circle of love around the men who are inside the circle. Some women do a side step without their heels even touching the ground.

There is a story behind the Grandfather Drum. There was a war between the Lakota and the Ojibway and it was going on so long that no one remembered why it started. There was a little girl who heard the fighting close to her camp and she ran until she reached a river which was too wide for her to cross. She hollowed out a reed and placed it in her mouth and went under the water so she couldn't hear anything. She had a vision of this drum. Spirits told her the materials that she needed to make the drum. She slowly got out of the water and she went back to her camp and she told her family. When they made the drum, she gathered everyone around the drum and told them what it was for. They sent a messenger to the Ojibway camp and he told them about this story and gave them the drum and it brought an end to the fighting.

They invited the audience to try dancing with them. I was the only one who joined in.
Here is a short clip.

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