University of Saskatchewan

September 02, 2014   

U of S Hosts Unique Conference and Festival of Oral Performance

June 10, 2008

Saskatoon, SK—The University of Saskatchewan will host a storytelling and oral performance conference and festival June 19th to 21st. The event is the first of its kind and is international, interdisciplinary, and cross-cultural.

The Oral, the Written, and Other Verbal Media: Interfaces and Audiences conference and eVOCative Festival will focus on storytelling, oral communication, and performance in various media, and will emphasize work by Indigenous people in Canada.

“We aim to represent a wide range of academic disciplines, cultures, and historical periods and to foster opportunities for collaboration among performers, scholars and audiences,” said conference chair Susan Gingell. “The public is invited to participate in this unique opportunity to experience the rich diversity of communication and performance.”

The conference, which will be centred at the U of S’s Georgia Goodspeed Theatre (Edwards School of Business, Room 18), will pair scholars with practitioners and artists working in a wide range of media.

The conference will feature artistic performance events, discussions by artists, a balladeer from Britain, a theologian discussing the Gospels as storytelling, a leading Margaret Atwood scholar, and a local Cree story-keeper sharing his experience of bringing Cree stories into schools. The keynote speaker for the event is University of Wisconsin Anishinabe poet and scholar Kimberly Blaeser.

The eVOCative Festival will present a variety of oral performance arts, including the genres of spoken-word, computer-mediated performance, sound art, Aboriginal hip-hop, dub, and sound poetry. Spoken-word performance and video poem-making workshops for artists will also be offered.

The eVOCative Festival will have two main events:

  • A Performance Cabaret with sound poets and spoken-word and dub artists in the Oak Room of Saskatoon’s Park Town Hotel on June 20th at 7:30 p.m.
  • A Crow Hop Café, a showcase of Aboriginal oral art, at the Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company, 228 – 20th Street West, Saskatoon, on June 21st at 7:30 p.m.

Passes and individual event tickets are available at McNally Robinson, Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company, and The Refinery in Saskatoon, and at the Book and Brier Patch in Regina.

McNally Robinson will host two festival performances:

  • On June 18th, a pre-festival book launch of d’bi.young.anitafrika’s dub love poetry book, rivers...and other blackness...between us at 7:00 p.m.
  • On June 19th, performances by sound artist Paul Dutton and spoken-word artist Cat Kidd at 8:00 p.m.

For information on the conference see https://ocs.usask.ca/theoral, and on the festival see https://ocs.usask.ca/evocative.

To schedule interviews, contact Susan Gingell at 966-5510 or susan.gingell@usask.ca.

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