Members of Answer, an all-female drumming group, rehearse for this weekend’s production of Pendulum: An Indigenous Showcase, running Feb. 23 and 24 at the Belfry Theatre. Michelle Munki photo

‘Pendulum’ swings Indigenous arts onto the Belfry Theatre stage

From contemporary to traditional, ‘it’s a magic show’ says Indigenous Artist in Residence

Pendulum: a weight suspended from a pivot so that it may swing freely.

For the City of Victoria’s Indigenous Artist in Residence, Lindsay Delaronde, the concept also represents a starting point. On Friday (Feb. 23), the Iroquois Mohawk woman will open Pendulum: An Indigenous Showcase, at the Belfry Theatre – the first of its kind in the city.

“It’s a magic show,” Delaronde says. “Each piece weaves something very special. You cannot think your way through, you have to sit and experience and feel.”

Pendulum brings together 40 local Indigenous people from all territories for a performance that swings from the contemporary to the traditional. It brings new life into the context of theatre and decolonizes the art form, which Indigenous peoples are so often left out of, Delaronde notes.

In January, her Artist in Residence position was extended for a second year, despite some criticisms voiced by city councillors.

“People need to meet us where we’re at, instead of doing this in a western context,” she says, explaining how theatre has long perpetuated colonialism.

RELATED: Merits of performance art debated on review of Victoria’s Indigenous Artist in Residence position

“We need to be visible, especially in the arts – that’s where we carry a lot of our knowledge,” she adds. Delaronde credits the Belfry as an engaged partner interested in recognizing colonial damage and not creating spaces out of guilt.

“This sense of Pendulum is about transformation and unity and decolonizing spaces.”

Dance, spoken word, storytelling, the power of the drum – it will all be there when the show takes centre stage. Ohen:ton Kariwentehkhwa will present an Iroquois giving of thanks followed by Breath in the Land, a local acknowledgement of welcome and holding of space.

ANSWER, an all-female drum group, will perform as well as Rage Flowers, a contemporary duet exploring decolonizing of the body through rage. Ahousat, a Bear Song composed by Guy Louis Jr., will be performed by members of the Nuuchanulth community.

Delaronde considers her role as that of a mediator, preparing artists who have not been performers in the technical western sense, but who “have been singing and dancing since they were babies.”

This is about developing ongoing relationships for Indigenous people in Victoria’s arts community, she explains, noting they are often asked to be part of events, but never before have they been the event.

It really is important in Victoria to push into the mainstream and have shows like these annually, she adds.

“We have a lot of beauty, we have a lot of story that is relatable. It’s about relating to people and breaking stereotypes.”

Pendulum will stage three performances Feb. 23 and 24 at the Belfry Theatre (1291 Gladstone Ave.). Tickets are available through the Belfry box office, by calling 250-385-6815 or visiting Belfry.bc.ca.

Watch Lindsay tell you in her own words about Pendulum: An Indigenous Showcase below:

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

Arts and cultureindigenous artist in residenceIndigenous Arts

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Greater Victoria thrift shop quietly closes two locations indefinitely

Society of St. Vincent de Paul shut down Sooke and Central Saanich storefronts

Sooke councillor pitches another way to improve transit

Coun. Jeff Bateman wants free passes for youth on local routes

Sooke couple that owned Sooke Harbour House given $4 million after lengthy court case

B.C. Supreme Court rules in favour of Frederique and Sinclair Philip

Local MP Elizabeth May likes aspects of throne speech, but questions execution

According to May nobody is as ‘reckless’ as BC’s John Horgan in dismissing snap election

‘It’s a boy’: Southern Resident killer whale calf born to J Pod is healthy, researchers say

J35 had previously done a ‘Tour of Grief,’ carrying her dead calf for 17 days

B.C. reports 91 new cases as officials remain worried over ‘clusters of COVID-19

There have now been a total of 8,395 cases in B.C. since the pandemic began

Canada’s active COVID-19 cases top 10,000 as daily new cases triple over the past month

Dr. Tam repeated her warning to young people, who have made up the majority of recent cases

First 8 months of fatal overdoses in B.C. have now exceeded 2019 death toll

Nine people died every two days in August, BC Coroners Service data shows

Liberal effort to reset policy agenda panned by rivals as too much talk, not action

Trudeau said it’s ‘all too likely’ families won’t be able to gather for Thanksgiving next month

‘Show us the money’ for cannabis, local governments tell B.C.

Municipal tax, transit revenues falling as costs rise

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cops for Cancer: COVID-19 can’t stop Tour de Rock

‘having the chance to come back and ride this year means everything to me’

People ‘disgusted’ by COVID-19 election call, B.C. Liberal leader says

Andrew Wilkinson speaks to municipal leaders from Victoria

Horgan blasts B.C. Greens for refusing youth overdose detention

Lack of support key to B.C. election call, NDP leader says

Most Read