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Arts & Culture

Stories about the art and culture.

Andrew Gonzales holds up a tray of his vegan enchiladas, paired with rice and beans.
Christine Trudeau / KYUK

Six to seven hundred Bethelites decided to participate in the Taste of Bethel Ethnic Food Festival this past weekend at the Cultural Center. KYUK’s Christine Trudeau brings us this tableside report.

 


Bethel Native Works To Program A "Yup'ik Siri"

Jul 11, 2017
Courtesy of Christopher Liu.

YK Delta communities are keeping Yup'ik alive through immersion schools, bilingual media, teacher training programs, and speaking the language at home. And now, Bethel native Christopher Liu is doing his part to bring his language into the 21st century.


Cecelia Martz (left) and Len Kameraling discuss the film The Drums of Winter after a screening of the digitally restored documentary at the Bethel Cultural Center on May 12, 2017. Cecelia Martz is a retired UAF Kuskokwim University Campus professor of Ant
Dean Swope / KYUK Public Media

One of the most significant films about Yup’ik culture has been digitally restored. The Drums of Winter is an award-winning documentary shot in Emmonak 40 years ago that tells the story of Yup’ik dancing and potlatching between Emmonak and Alakanuk. After three years of restoration work, it's now being shown around the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta.


Filmed in Emmonak 40 years ago, The Drums of Winter tells the story of dancing and potlatching between Emmonak and Alakanuk. Filmed in collaboration with the communities, the story remains relevant and authentic today. The documentary has received some of film's highest honors, including being added to the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry in recognition of its value to American culture. Now, the film has been digitally restored and is touring the Delta. KYUK sits down with some of the people behind the screenings to discuss the significance of the film and what we can learn from it today.


Carrying On The Legacy Of Yuyaraq, The Way Of Life

May 8, 2017
Katie Basile / KYUK

After this year's Yup'ik Heritage Week at Bethel Regional High School, a three-day Yuraq Yup’ik Dance Festival took place in the school gymnasium.

Dancers have come from villages across the Yukon Kuskokwim Delta for this year’s Dance Festival. This is the first year Yuraq has been held in Bethel, as it has traveled in the past from village to village. It’s one of the few times of year when groups can come together, listen to songs from other villages —some they may have never heard before—, and even join in with other dance groups.

Katie Basile / KYUK

Families from across the Y-K Delta reunited both on and off stage at the 2017 Cama'i Dance Festival over the weekend of April 1. 

KYUK

"The original meaning (of dance) is to entertain people. You have to make your teasing cousins laugh," says Ayaprun Loddie Jones.

Jones is the daughter of the late Maryann Sundown of Scammon Bay. In her lifetime, Sundown may have been the most famous dancer in Alaska, and a true celebrity at the annual Cama'i Dance Festival. 

Dean Swope / KYUK

The 2017 Cama-i Dance Festival begins Friday at the Bethel Regional High School. The weekend-long cultural celebration marks the largest annual gathering of Alaska Native dance in the world.


KYUK

In this video we take another look at the 1984 documentary "Eyes of the Spirit" to share dance performances that incorporate the seal and owl masks. 

Sue Charles and John Active, who took part in both performances in the film, discuss the significance of dancing with masks.

KYUK

To celebrate the 28th annual Cama'i Festival, KYUK is sharing clips of dance footage from our video archives.

The 1984 film "Eyes of the Spirit," produced by KYUK, documents the revitalization of dancing with masks in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

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