Ingenious! Curiosity would trigger an urge to know whose brainchild it was to come up with a brilliant showcase that links a couple of tribes from two distant dots on the global map. Estrella Alamar (Founder of FAHSCI), Ruben Salazar (P2P principal mover), Michelle Quijano-Delson of Hawak-Kamay, an in-residence artist from the Trickster Gallery like Joe Yazzie or an output of a brainstorming group session are a few guesses that will be left unanswered.
Big Sky is the name of the drum used by four men representing various tribes who sing inter-tribal dance songs to exhort a gathering of Indian nations into a dance ritual. The chanting drummers are Warren P., Macky D., Dan Laprairie and leftmost, Joe Padlasek, Executive Director of the American Indian Center, Inc. (Photo by Chicago Ethnic Music Examiner)
The big picture does not compel one to identify that individual for credit’s sake as much as the need to detail the elements of a rare show that begs a repeat. The applause and focused interest that this writer saw from his 3-year-old half-American-half-Filipino grandson who made his very first trip to an inter-ethnic exhibition with Lolo and Lola (grandparents) revealed something interesting. From the trained eyes of a child and an enthusiasm to watch a gallery of fine Indian and Igorot exhibits and artifacts, an awakening to the diverse roots from which he or she descended has begun to take form. How profound and lasting these early impressions are on Colin, one cannot know for certain. If anything, it was high time he started learning about his dual lineage and meet young friends whose bloodlines originate from native American Indians and young Filipinos with ancestral link to tribal groups in the mountains of Cordillera, or elsewhere. He got both in one day at the American Indian Center. This center’s mission is to “promote the fellowship among Indian people of all Tribes living in Metropolitan Chicago and to create bonds of understanding and communication between Indians and non-Indians in this city.” In this show, the mission expanded to include the Igorot tribes from Southeast Asia, many oceans away.
A little boy from Bourbonnais, Illinois poses quite comfortably with Rex Delson and his IGOROT clan with roots from the Benguet province, Philippines, some of whom travelled the distance to perform with pride for Singgalot and pay tribute to their native heritage as a birthright. Photo by Arlene Sadcopen
A photoslide that is adequately captioned to be a useful reference to viewers who were in attendance and those who missed this July 17th event at Schaumburg is worth a thousand words, a luxury that is not available to this examiner.
For more info: Rex Delson from the Igorot group may be reached on his email address at [email protected] ; for the native American-Indian group, contact the American Indian Centre’s Joe Padlasek at (847) 301-2090