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Inuktitut tribute concert kicks off Alianait season

Alianait kicks off its 2018 concert series with an Inuktitut music tribute.

The event was Alianait festival coordinator Alannah Johnston's idea.

"I wanted an Inuktitut-songs concert," said Johnston.

"I had seen the Aqpik Jam (in Kuujjuaq). They do a similar thing every year, and it was very well received. I was talking to my mom and she said, 'Why don't you just do it.' So, I did."

image by Pascale Arpin Art
The upcoming all-Inuktitut concert organized by Alianait as its 2018 opener, will feature favourites made famous by the likes of Joey Ammaq, Charlie Adams, Charlie Panigoniak, Etulu Aningmiuq, performed by Iglulik musicians Lazarus (Mister) Qattalik and Allan Kangok who will join Iqaluit's own Daniel Kolola, Charlie Panipak and Mason Angnakak.

Lazarus (Mister) Qattalik and Allan Kangok are scheduled to arrive to the capital from Iglulik Wednesday, joining Iqaluit's own Daniel Kolola, Charlie Panipak and Mason Angnakak.

"Starting Thursday, we've set up times to rehearse as a band. We're creating a new band," said executive director Heather Daley.

"But they are musicians who have frequently played Inuktitut favourites. Particularly the Daniel Kolola Band."

The evening will feature favourites from Joey Ammaq, Charlie Adams, Charlie Panigoniak, Etulu Aningmiuq, and band Uvagut.

Johnston says Qattalik and Kangok are happy to be coming to the city.

"We wanted them to play back in October, but we weren't able to make it happen. They wanted to come to play at the festival, as well," she said. "They like to play live and I know they want to get their names out there more. And we want to help."

Daley said Kolola, Panipak and Angnakak were also eager to get involved.

"They're really excited to play with each other. I don't think they have in the past, but they know each other's music," said Johnston.

"We've asked Lazarus and Allan to do an opening set. Lazarus has a brand new CD, so hopefully he'll do some of his original songs from his new CD. Then we'll have an intermission, and then lots of Inuktitut favourites," said Daley.

Daley lists future 2018 concerts:

  • March 17 and 18 – two performances of Terje Isungset’s magical Ice Music back by popular demand
  • May 5 – Juno Award winning alternative-country singer Justin Rutledge
  • Sept. 8 – singer, seamstress and advocate for healthy living, Beatrice Deer
  • Oct. 13 – Iqaluit Arctic soul band The Tradeoffs
  • Nov. 24 – musical tour de force Cara Luft and JD Edwards who make up The Small Glories

Each of these concerts will feature young Inuit musicians as opening acts.

"It's part of what we do. It's a mix. At most of the concerts, the up-and-comer opens for a visiting artist," said Daley. "Putting our top performers on the same stage as Joel Plaskett and Ice Music and whoever else that we bring."

The tribute concert takes place at Inuksuk High School Saturday Jan. 20. Tickets are available at Arctic Ventures and at the Alianait website, though the evening is free for elders and children 12 and under accompanied by an adult.