Giizhig

March 18 - 19 - 20, 2021

"A moment of calm, a meeting, an exchange, a smile... it's a journey through and into community, a brief encounter for connection and reflection.  It's a conversation between our urban landscape and the natural environment.

Throughout this movement-based, traveling performance, GIIZHIG brings community together while physically apart, uplifting our spirits through our shared senses and with our collective imaginations."

 

“Giizhig” is the Anishinaabemowin - Ojibway word for “cedar”, and pronounced “gee zhig”

 

CREDITS:
Director: Michael Caldwell

Artistic advisor: Isorine Marc

Created with and performed by: Aria Evans, Irma Villafuerte, Jane-Alison McKinney, Jim 'Many Hats' Adams and Michael Caldwell

Poem by: Mahlikah Awe:ri

Produced and presented by: Jamii

In partnership with: Canadian Stage

Funded by:

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Onen’takwenhténhtshera (Cedar)

Aromatic sensations of ethereal

Stability Somatic Sovereignty

Silence is our Sanctuary

With every sip my spirit drifts

To ancestral woodlands

Where her tender protective bows

Inwardly sway me back

To Lodge Prayer Ceremony

Releasing the toxicity

Which threatens reciprocity

Grandmother Cedar’s Roots

Trust where our ancestors planted us

Embrace the constant growing

While invoking ancient ways of knowing

Medicinal pathways of healing and flowing

Grandmother Cedar’s Branches

Expand our capacity, tenacity

To hold space for self-love

Granting peace of mind

To rise above, clouds of incertitude & hopelessness

Presence is our gift

Grandmother Cedar’s Leaves

Grieve, and let go, of inter-generational suffering & sorrow

Movement is our medicine

Soothing cavernous, wounded marrow

So, we inaugurate a promising tomorrow

Grandmother Cedar’s BarkTake’s shame off the table

Fear has no place in a warrior’s heart

We are not societies labels

We will exhale, smoke signals

Declaring “I AM ENOUGH!”

Grandmother Cedar’s Trunk

Stands in our highest truth

Embodying the beautiful proof

That with every act of surrender

We call into existence the splendour

Of reclaiming versions, versions of ourselves

Longing to fill our restorative brew

Swallowing fermented fragments

Steeped in lineages not to be forgotten

Rest is Resiliency, Energy is our Currency

Infused with everything we need, to be whole

 

By Mahlikah Awe:ri Enml’ga’t Saqama’sgw ©2021

Photos: Ali Javeed