Friday, May 22, 2009

Festival Finale

Origins came to an end last Sunday, and I'm only now emerging into the daylight to acknowledge the fact! It was an amazing couple of weeks. Of course, some things worked better than others, and some things drew bigger crowds than others - but that's to be expected, especially with the first Festival. Two standing ovations: one for the last performance of Almighty Voice and His Wife, and one for Alanis Obomsawin's incredibly moving Lecture.

At the Closing Ceremony on Sunday, Robert Greygrass and Jean Bruce-Scott presented me with a beautiful blanket, which is a great honour amongst the Native Americans. Considering that their show had (for some reason) drawn the smallest crowds, it was especially moving. I got a very powerful sense that everybody involved was seeing the bigger picture, and looking to future Festivals and wider possibilities.

I had dinner with David Milroy that evening. Great to talk to him at length, two years after we first discussed bringing over Windmill Baby. We go to the Festival hotel, and find the bar full of First Nations people. Patrick is playing his guitar, and Ant his flute. They are surrounded by Elders, performers, crew, and by the ever-increasing crowd of Origins fans we have assembled. An image of community.

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