Monday, August 15, 2016

Chilcotin Holidays

Pow Wow - The Significance of the Big Drum


We had the opportunity to go to a Pow Wow in Mount Currie near to Pemberton. When we arrived it was just starting: the Chief was doing the opening of the celebration. The Community Hall was divided in different parts: all around were small stands where we could buy hand made clothes or jewels, in the center was an open place for the dances and between, around the dance area, there were several groups with big drums or pow wow drums. There were 3 groups from different tribes and they were playing those pow wow drums each after the other. They could play each time two or three songs per tribe, or to be more precise per family, and per category of dancers: teenage girls or boys, traditionals or animals, women or men... Each group had between five and ten members as well as young or old. Two or three were leading the songs and others were repeating. They were all playing perfectly coordinated to a unique rythm. The drums were so powerful I could feel the beats in my chest. It makes you want to stand up and go to dance with them. The pow wow drum is definitely the main musical instrument for the dances of a Pow Wow.

"The beat of the drums helps the people dance. The big drums are more than just musical instruments. They are special objects. They must be treated with respect. First Nations people have pounded their drums for thousands of years. They still do so today. They come together for powwows. Drummers play and sing. The people dance to the beat of the big drums."

(Evan-Moor Corp)

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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