This video supports the Grade 4 focus "Saskatchewan Voices."
This intimate look at the Big River Cree powwow in northern Saskatchewan features behind-the-scenes visits with performers and Elders, as well as mesmerizing footage of many different types of dances, drumming and singing. Alvin Manitopyes explains the powwow's evolution from the age of the buffalo hunt and warrior societies to the more social event it is today. Thomas Christian discusses the discipline dancers must bring to the art form and the storytelling that goes along with it. Sheldon "Laughing Horse" Sutherland points out the subtle and countless ways performers express their personal style. Linda Standing, Cecile Nepoose and Charles Rabbitskin explain the spiritual significance of the exquisite handcrafted regalia. Intercut with the powwow's hypnotic whir of movement, colour and sound, these individuals and others share their personal reasons for taking part in this ancient tradition and its enormous impact on their identity.