We are kept in their mindset as “vanished peoples.” Or as workers, not creators…And what does this erasing of individual identity do to us? Can you believe you exist if you look in a mirror and see no reflection? And what happens when one group controls the mirror market? As Native people, we have known that in order to survive we had to create, re-create, produce, re-produce… The effect of the denial of our existence is that many of us have become invisible…the systematic disruption of our families by the removal of our children was effective for silencing our voices…. however, not (everyone) can still that desire, that up-welling inside that says sing, write, draw, move, be… we can sing our hearts out, tell our stories, paint our visions…we are in a position to create a more human reality…in order to live we have to make our own mirrors….
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Marcie Rendon, enrolled member of the White Earth Nation, is a playwright, poet, and freelance writer. She has published four nonfiction children’s books; two are Pow Wow Summer (MN Historical Press) and Farmer’s Market: Families Working Together (CarolRhoda). Rendon’s debut novel, Murder on the Red River (Cinco Puntos Press) will be available March 2017. Rendon is a community arts activist who supports other native artists/writers/creators to pursue their art. With four published plays she is the producer and creative mind behind Raving Native Theater, which produced Bring the Children Home at the MN Fringe 2015 and 3 community-based venues in 2015-16. She also co-curated 6 Raving Native Date Nights in Minneapolis, 2016. In 2016-17 she is a recipient of the Loft’s Spoken Word Immersion Fellowship with poet Diego Vazquez. Her poem Wiigwaasabak will be featured in the St. Paul Almanac’s Impressions Project Summer 2017.
Utilizing my tried and true method I will engage all ages of students to create characters, write dialogue and perform a script at a site-specific venue all within the time-frame of the residency; whether that is one day or two weeks. I have done this residency with 5th graders, at tribal colleges and at state colleges, and for grass roots community groups. Students will learn how to create a character based on a back story they develop themselves, they will write the characters dialogue from prompts that I provide and they will use available space to stage their production at the end of the residency.
Understanding Other Cultures Through Writing, with a focus on Ojibwe peoples & culture
Through group conversation, readings and exploration of art participants will engage in writing exercises that explore their relationship to the Ojibwe people of Minnesota. I will provide age-appropriate prompts for writing and guide the discussions for utmost respect and inclusion.
Understanding Other Cultures Through Performance or Script writing, with a focus on Ojibwe peoples and culture
Through group conversation, readings and exploration of art participants will engage in writing exercises that explore their relationship to the Ojibwe people of Minnesota. I will provide age-appropriate prompts for writing and guide the discussions and creation of collaborative performance with an ear for utmost respect and inclusion.
Students will write poetry, I will provide the prompts and encouragement. They will also read their work to the group.
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