Today is a big day of celebrating because we give Kamloopa to the community. There's something very remarkable happening here and the Matriarchs of Kamloopa would like to thank the Secwepemc people for allowing us to spend some time on their territory to create new ceremony. Once again the generosity of Indigenous peoples truly humbles me. Limelet.
We spent some time today sharing what we're personally proud of, what have we accomplished here that we wanted to celebrate. For me when I distil it, it is the power of belief. This process was very much like creating in the dark and we had to trust in our inherent Indigenous knowing, we had to believe it and refuse the bullshit, decolonize the process and reclaim Indigenous sovereign art creation.
That took a lot of belief from myself that I didn't know was there. That's not to say there weren't moments I asked myself what are we doing? Cause I did...many times like when I ask the team to turn tuna can lids into a jingle dress, or shoot fire extinguishers at one another, or create Indigenous protocol.
But it is my opinion that belief in oneself and in others is the most powerful thing that we can give ourselves and others. When someone truly believes in you, I'm not sure that there is anything more driving, assuring and loving. And I believe in Kamloopa and I firmly believe in the Matriarchs creating and holding Kamloopa.
I shared with the Fire Company that I'm not sure I've ever felt this joyous. Tears were jumping out of my eyes and I think that's the closest to jumping for joy I've ever been. Learning to let joy, happiness and love in continues to be a journey for me and I have to thank the Matriarchs for gifting me with that.
There are a number of people that I need to limelet for embracing Kamloopa and teaching me the value and importance of love, so I will list them and miss people but please forgive me in advance.
My Grandma's and Grandpa's for teaching me the value and pride of being Indigenous.
Mom for teaching me strength and emapthy
Dad for teaching me the power of questions and hard critical reflective work
Kristen and Karlene for being the loves of my life
Brendon for your constant generosity in the partnership
My Aunty's and Uncles for taking me for ice cream and horse back riding in the Mountains
My cuzzins for always making me laugh
The Matrairch's of Indigenous Theatre - for your love and continued labour - Quelemia and Lindsay - your teachings and love this past year - I can't even think where I would be without the both of you
Kevin for always pushing and supporting me and setting the example for excellence
Lori for believing in Kamloopa and me from the beginning
Colleen Murphy for reminding me to be brave and to dance on a razor blade
Daryl Cloran for always answering my ridiculous texts with intuitive and generous teachings
Drove for keeping me on my toes and rigorous
Jeremy for teaching me the power of seeing someone
And of course to The Fire Company
Cris Derksen for your incredible spirit creating artistry
Yolanda Bonnell for being a gift from the Ancestors to us in the here and now
Daniella Masellis for your illumination and kindness
Lindsay Lachance for your curiosity
Jessica Schacht for your beautifully powerful point of view
Michelle Chabassol for working your damn ovaries off!
Samantha Brown for your beautiful strength and power
Maddy Henry for your leadership and grace
Emily Soussana for your hilarity and intution
Kaitlyn Yott for your fucking courage you rock star!
Sam McCue for your powerful humility and strength
To the peeps paying our bills - WE THANK YOU!!!!
WCT, Persephone, Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre, The Cultch and the NAC Indigenous Theatre.
Kamloopa is now yours. I hope it allowed you to find courage in laughter, find more questions than answers and that it activates and fuels the power that exists inside of you right now.
With more joy than a girl can keep in, from my Ancestors to yours,
Love, love, love
p.s Kimi Clark made a fantastic accompaniment to experiencing Kamloopa and its the most amazingly perfect Study Buddy Zine eva!!!!! Take a look here and thank you Kimi soooooo much!