Ainu Performance

Kanako Uzawa demonstrating a traditional mouth harp

Local residents and members of the Indigenous community in Vernon enjoyed an introduction to the culture of the Ainu, the Indigenous people of Japan, in an outdoor event sponsored by FCCS on July 31. The event was entitled, Reframing Ainu Indigeneity.

Ainu scholar, artist and activist, Kanako Uzawa, discussed traditional and contemporary cultural and political issues, then demonstrated a traditional mouth harp and presented an original dance composition.

The audience also participated enthusiastically in singing an Upopo, a traditional song in the round, followed by a question-and-answer session. Dr. Uzawa was in transit between Banff, where she participated in a 3-week Indigenous choreographers and dancers lab at the Banff Centre, and Vancouver, where she spoke and performed at Haida House at the UBC Vancouver Museum of Anthropology.

More information about Dr. Uzawa and contemporary Ainu culture can be found on the Ainu Today website that she administers.

Photo credit: Wayne Emde Photography

FCCS prof, Nina Langton introducing Kanako Uzawa at the event

Kanako Uzawa presenting an original dance composition

Kanako Uzawa