November 20, 2009

Multimedia Chickasaw cultural production

‘Lowak Shoppala’ brings history, culture of Chickasaws to life

By Dana HudspethThree renowned Chickasaw artists, Jerod Tate, Linda Hogan and Margaret Roach Wheeler, will help bring Chickasaw culture to life at the Nov. 21 premiere, and Nov. 22 performance, of "Lowak Shoppala' (Fire and Light).

"These are three exceptionally talented individuals who have accomplished great things in the fields of music, literature and visual arts," said Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anaotubby. "There is no doubt that they will create an incredibly moving production as they combine their talents with all the other talented individuals and groups involved in this project."
The three artists and their roles:Chickasaw classical composer Jerod Tate was commissioned by the American Composers Forum Continental Harmony Project to create the music for the production.

"The title of the work comes directly out of the poetry of Linda Hogan," said Mr. Tate. "She composed a poem called fire and light for the tribe back in 2004. I was so moved by the poetry and the idea that I realized I wanted to use her poetry in the work as well."

"It's a multimedia work in that it's for theater, so it involves acting and staging and costumes and there's dance and soloists, singers, and the children's chorus and traditional dancers from the tribe as well," said Mr. Tate.

Textile artist Margaret Roach Wheeler created the costumes and set designs for the production.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Native Plays and Other Stage Shows.

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