MIIGIS by Red Sky Performance – Photo credit: David Hou
Published May 26, 2018
VENICE – Red Sky Performance, Canada’s leading company of contemporary Indigenous performance, founded by executive and artistic director Sandra Laronde announced that they were the first-ever Indigenous performance company from Canada to perform at the prestigious Venice Biennale on Thursday, May 24, 2018 at the Arsenale Isolotto in Venice, Italy.
Fusing contemporary Indigenous dance with powerful music, MIIGIS reveals the power of nature and Indigenous prophecy. Inspired by Anishinaabe culture, MIIGIS is a symbol of ‘the perfect breath of life’, water trade routes, and a catalyst for a new direction on a journey from the Atlantic Coast to the Great Lakes.
Red Sky was part of Canada Council for the Arts’ first Indigenous-led Exhibition at 16th Biennale in Architecture in Italy, UNCEDED: Voices of the Land, led by eminent Canadian architect Douglas Cardinal.
“As the first Indigenous performing arts company from Canada to perform at the Venice Biennale, we’re thrilled to join forces with one of Canada’s foremost architects, Douglas Cardinal, and his design team, during the inauguration of UNCEDED. Our project, MIIGIS, reveals architecture in motion and it is reflective of the interdisciplinary heart that beats within Indigenous creative expression,” says Red Sky Performance Executive & Artistic Director Sandra Laronde.
MIIGIS by Red Sky Performance_photo credit David Hou
Curated by Gerald McMaster and David Fortin, the exhibition UNCEDED: Voices of the Land showcases the work of 18 Indigenous architects and designers from across Turtle Island. UNCEDED explores four key themes: indigeneity, resilience, sovereignty and colonization.
MIIGIS is conceived and directed by Sandra Laronde with choreography byJera Wolfe, featuring dancers Cody Berry, Lonii Garnons-Williams, Julie Pham, and Jera Wolfe, with music co-created by Julian Cote, Pura Fe, Marie Gaudet, Mark Merilainen, Pierre Monegon and Rick Sacks.
Co-commissioned by The Bentway, City of Toronto, and the Fort York Historic Site, with the support of Canadian Heritage, MIIGIS had its World Premiere on September 15, 2017, and its preview at Jacob’s Pillow on August 26, 2017.
In May, MIIGIS was nominated by the Indigenous Music Awards for the 2018 Best Instrumental Album of Year, and in February 2018, MIIGIS received a Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation.
Watch Red Sky performance from last year here:
Red Sky Performance is a leading company of contemporary Indigenous performance in Canada and worldwide. Indigenous-led by Executive and Artistic Director Sandra Laronde (Teme-Augama Anishinaabe), Red Sky is currently in it’s18th year of dance, theatre, music, and media. Their mission is to create inspiring experiences of contemporary Indigenous arts and culture that transform society.
Red Sky gratefully acknowledges the generous support of Canada Council for the Arts for supporting their historic participation at the Venice Biennale.