Exploring Cross-Cultural Communication, Diversity and Unity via Lakota Heritage

During May of 2019, Artists Building Capacity as World Citizens sponsored visits to two New Hampshire schools by National Heritage Fellow, master flute artist, and traditional storyteller Kevin Locke.

Kevin uses his Lakota heritage to encourage the welcoming of diversity, communicating across cultures and uniting in peaceful co-existence. Through his workshops and interactive presentations, Kevin works with teachers and curriculum to enhance students’ understanding of these challenges through the use of a variety of artistic media, and the unique historical and cultural contributions of indigenous peoples.

Storytelling with Lakota hoop dances at Seacoast Charter School

About 300 students and their teachers welcomed Kevin to the Seacoast Charter School in Dover, where his performance addressed concepts of unity and oneness. In a session with third- and fourth-graders, he shared indigenous music, sign language, prayer songs in the Lakota language, stories, history, and a traditional visionary hoop dance, which represents the roles and responsibilities that all human beings have within the hoops (circles) of life.

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Actor’s Performance Honors UN Decade for People of African Descent

Artists Building Capacity as World Citizens hosted New Hampshire actor Kevin Wade Mitchell, with the help of Sandi Clark Kaddy, in a dramatic performance, “Black My Story, Not His’Story” December 8 at the Portsmouth Public Library in Portsmouth, NH. This was ABC-WC’s second annual program in honor of the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent.

Sandi Clark Kaddy and Kevin Wade Mitchell in “Black My Story, Not His’Story”.

The performance’s format of story and music explored the life of Captain Paul Cuffee, an African-American shipping merchant who spoke out against taxation without representation and established a racially integrated school for the children in his eighteenth-century New England community.

The program also explored the courage and determination displayed by those who sought to escape slavery, and featured a segment about the life and death of Emmett Louis Till.

During the question-and-answer session that followed the performance, artist and audience discussed themes of civil and human rights, inclusion and exclusion, spiritual strengths and the contributions that people of African descent have made and are making in the United States.
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