Iqaluit’s 2013 Alianait festival promises music for every taste

New Inuit artists to perform at free June 21 concert.


Alianait events take place in the purple and yellow big-top tent and in Nakasuk Elementary School, to the right. (FILE PHOTO)

Alianait events take place in the purple and yellow big-top tent and in Nakasuk Elementary School, to the right. (FILE PHOTO)

Organizers of the Alianait arts festival in Iqaluit say this year’s line-up promises a “mix of world-class music and a long weekend filled with fun, families and friends and creativity.”

The festival kicks off with a free concert June 21, National Aboriginal Day concert at Nakasuk Elementary School, starting at 7:30 p.m.

That concert features emerging Inuit artists Agaaqtoq, Calvin Pameolik, MO/Counterfeit Nobles, Qatagiit and the Kingait Band.

The other festival events, June 27 to July 1, include a line-up of local, national and international artists in workshops, concerts and exhibitions.

“We will be celebrating with cultural performances of music, film, storytelling, dance and visual arts,” said Franco Buscemi, the chair of Alianait’s board.

Tickets and passes for events requiring paid admission go on sale June 19 at Arctic Ventures Marketplace in Iqaluit.

During Alianait you will hear Nunavut artists include Kelly Fraser, Koel & the Twin Otters, Jamal Shirley, Michael Doyle, Terrie Kusugak, Billy Kuksuk, Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory and The Jerry Cans.

Greenlandic folk legend, singer, songwriter and actor Rasmus Lyberth, one of the most popular artists on the Greenlandic music scene since the 1970s, will perform.

Australian world indigenous performer, Adrian Fabila Tjupurrula aka Tjupurru, a descendant of the Djabera Djabera tribe of the West Australia Kimberleys, will also bring the didjeridu, the traditional instrument of Australia’s indigenous people, to Iqaluit.

And British Columbia’s cultural icon, Kinnie Starr, and from Halifax, the “quintessential Maritime musician,” J.P. Cormier, will also perform.

Toronto acapella group Eh440, Alberta fiddler Wesley Hardisty and Nova Scotia’s jazz band Gypsophilia are also on the line-up.

“We are thrilled to feature two performances of ‘A Circumpolar Soundscape’ that brings together the dynamic talents of northern Aboriginal singer-songwriters Diyet, Sylvia Cloutier, and Nive Nielsen,” Alianait said.

A Circumpolar Soundscape was shown at the Arctic Winter Games in Whitehorse last year, toured Greenland and opened the National Arts Centre’s Northern Scene Festival.

The theme of the Alianait 2013 festival, “Enchanted Owl,” celebrates the life and achievements of late Cape Dorset artist Kenojuak Ashevak, with Lise Desrosiers from Chesterfield Inlet creating the winning design in the 2013 Alianait and Nunavut Arts festivals’ logo contest.

Alianait festival activities will take place inside the big top tent and at Nakasuk elementary school.

Other highlights include a Canada Day Concert featuring the Gjoa Band, a kid’s festival with aboriginal puppeteer Rabbit and Bear Paws, as well as a battle of the bands where local and visiting groups compete for cash prizes.

Tickets go on sale June 19 at Arctic Ventures Marketplace.

Festival passes, which include admission to shows, a t-shirt and a 2010/11 Alianait CD, are $75 for adults, $40 for youth 13 to 18. Tickets for individual events are $13 for adults, $5 for youth 13 to 18. Kids under 12 and elders over 65 don’t have to pay for any of the events.

Alianait 2013 Pocket Schedule

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