Registration still available for Native American dance workshop

Registration continues for “The Beat of Tribal Drums and the Dance of the Comanche People,” a one-day workshop focusing on Native American dance scheduled for Saturday, November 16 at Cameron University’s Shepler Ballroom. The workshop will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be led by Eleanor McDaniel, Comanche artist and instructor in Native American arts and crafts. It is appropriate for ages 12 years and up. Registration fees are $10 for adults and $5.00 for students to cover cost of supplies. Students must present their ID for special rate. To register, call 581-3470/3471.

The workshop will begin at 10 a.m. with “A Personal Perspective of the Native American Church” presented by McDaniel, who will share her family’s long history with the Native American Church. McDaniel’s ancestors include three known Medicine Women (Sanapia, Chappy and Mary Poafbypitty) and three prominent chiefs (White Wolf, Iron Mountain and Little Raven) who were leaders in the Native American Church. She will provide an overview of traditional practices and spiritual philosophies as well as the drum and songs of the Native American Church. Traditional Native American Church songs and drumming will be performed by Gordon Tahquechi.

At 11 a.m., McDaniel will provide an overview of the Gourd Dance and how this ceremonial dance honors warriors. Tahquechi will also provide drums and song during the dance demonstration.

Following a lunch break, workshop attendees will have the opportunity to participate in a Gourd Dance. Shawls will be available for the women and a ceremonial rattle for the men. Original Gourd Dance songs and drumming will be performed by Tahquechi. The Gourd Dance will be led by Head Lady Dancer Carlene Collins and Head Man Dancer Jared Wahkinney, who will both be dressed in Gourd Dance regalia and will discuss the artistry in their fully handmade apparel.

After the Gourd Dance, McDaniel will provide an overview of general powwow etiquette and the styles of social dances that can be seen at powwows.  A powwow drum and songs will provide authenticity in the demonstration of social dancing. Wahkinney and Collins will change into Social Dancing regalia, complete with intricate bead and feather work.

 "The Beat of Tribal Drums and the Dance of the Comanche People" is part of Sharing The Spirit 2013-2014, a series of events celebrating Native American heritage in Southwest Oklahoma. The series is made possible by the Lawton Arts and Humanities Council, City of Lawton, Cameron University, Oklahoma Arts Council, and National Endowment for the Arts.

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November 16, 2013

PR# 13-187