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Lead Male Dancer

Arena director

Victor Tabobandung

Greg Meekis

Aanii. My name is Victor Tabobandung.
I am Anishinaabe, Beaver Clan from the Wasauksing First Nation.
I have been dancing as a Fancy Feather Dancer since I was younger. A dream that I had of being a Fancy Dancer set me on my path to create my regalia and begin Fancy Dancing.
I feel that it helps me maintain the connection to my culture.
I have a great career as an AirCanada Boeing 777 Pilot and I continue to dance to inspire indigenous youth to maintain our traditions even while pursuing an education and a career.
I also aspire to show that we do not have to give up one to do the other.
It is how I find balance.
To see more of my work follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/francisco_riquelme_

My name is Greg Meekis and I am Oji-Cree

From the isolated Northwestern Ontario community of Sandy Lake First Nation, I relocated to Ottawa in 1995 where I have been serving indigenous communities as an Outreach Worker, Indigenous Courtworker and currently, with the Odawa Native Friendship Center as Indigenous Bail Supervisor.

Heavily involved with the First Nation culture as a drummer and drum keeper.

First Nation art was something every child grew up with in Sandy Lake. It was the norm.

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Lead Female TeenDancer

Chelsea Neepin

Spiritwolf Singers

She:kon, Tansi, Hello My name is Chelsea Neepin, I am Mohawk from Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, as well as, Cree from Fox Lake Cree Nation. My roots run deep in this land, and I carry the teachings and traditions of my ancestors with me. My role as the lead female teen  dancer is to lead, welcome, and support all of the other dancers. I will dance every intertribal, and each dance I can participate in. I have been dancing in powwow since I was a young girl. I started as a fancy shawl dancer when I was about 4 years old, when I was 8 I decided to become a jingle dress dancer. Today, I am still dancing as an 18 year old entering my second year of university. I attend the University of British Columbia for a Bachelors of Arts degree, planning to major in political science and minor in First Nations & Indigenous Studies. I began dancing because of my Nohoom (grandmother), and she brought me up in a traditional way. I followed the footsteps of my late aunt Joanne Neepin who was also a powwow dancer. I dance for them, but also you. I dance for the people, for our community, for healing. I want to thank everyone who has helped me onto this path, especially all of the organizers, my communities, and the audience. I Invite everyone to enjoy the powwow and participate in our celebration. Nya:wen, Ekosi, Thank you.

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SpiritWolf Singers is comprised of local artists who’ve known each other for over 25 years and have sung together on and off for the same amount of time. They all share the love of the drum and singing. SpiritWolf Singers share the passion of learning songs from all over powwow nation. The singers are family and extended family. Brothers and cousins of survivors of the residential school system who show their resilience by keeping the tradition of song alive. SpiritWolf has singers who have traveled across Canada and into the States as well as overseas to do what they love. The group's name originated out of Pikwakanagan FN in Ontario with two of the original members who sit at the drum. They believe in the drums healing medicine and share the teachings and will do so into the future.

Host Drummers

Guest Dancers

Leah & Leo Andrades

Since Leah was a toddler she begged for “bells” to be sewn on to  all of her skirts and dresses. Her Mother (born Mi'kmaq), pictured  her daughter doing fancy dancing but Leah had already been drawn to bells. 

Leah’s  first “jingles”  were sewn to a belt made for her by a close family friend who insisted Leah learn the meaning and traditions behind the ceremony before she would be gifted a dress.

When the pandemic hit, Leah was introduced to a community member who  gave her the knowledge and techniques to dance and later  gifted her with her first Jingle Dress. 


 

Leo also received  his regalia from the same auntie that was held for over a decade until its destination was made clear and given to him.

Leo has been given offerings by Elders who insist he earned them along with his promise tto  never stop dancing and blessing the grounds.

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