I Lost My Talk



Directed by Barbara Willis Sweete for the National Arts Centre
Starring Monique Mojica, Kennedy Bomberry
Choreographer Santee Smith
Year 2015
Creative Producer Donna Feore
Produced by Willis Sweete Productions
and The National Arts Centre Orchestra, Ottawa
Format: HD, 5k Multi-screen projection, Live performance




Remarkable Mi’kmaw poet and elder Rita Joe C.M. penned her poem I Lost My Talk to convey her experience at the Schubenacadie Residential School in Nova Scotia. I Lost My Talk is an expression of, not only Rita Joe’s pain and frustration, but also her hope and conviction that the poem guide First Nations communities across Canada to a place of strength and pride.

Inspired by Rita Joe’s poem, is a multi-screen dance film set in Killbear Provincial Park on Georgian Bay. The film features a cast of 15 First Nations dancers and movement artists ranging in age from 14 to 70. It will be projected on an innovative set of large-format screens that wrap around the onstage performers. The National Arts Centre Orchestra, conducted by its new Music Director, Alexander Shelley, will perform the score live to the images on screen. The dance on film is choreographed by Santee Smith, Founding Artistic Director of Kaha:wi Dance Theatre and set to John Estacio’s especially commissioned score. Donna Feore, is the Creative Producer.

All images by Milan Podsedly. Copyright 2015.