On March 16, Qaggiavuut!, in partnership with the Alianait Arts Festival and Tukisigiarvik, announced Qaggiq 2021. This arts and culture festival will take place inside a 700-square foot iglu being built in Sylvia Grinnel Territorial Park by a team of “master iglu builders” led by Solomon Awa and Jacopoosie Tiglik.

Early in the week the builders started out on the land cutting out ice blocks.

Dozens of Inuit artists ranging from dancers, singers, storytellers and playwrights from across Nunavut will be gathering together to celebrate Inuit culture.

Qaggiavuut! hopes this will help bring attention to the need of a dedicated performing arts centre in the territory.

“Qaggiavuut’s ultimate goal is to build a permanent performing arts centre, under the principles of a traditional qaggiq: a magnificent space where people gather to celebrate life in song and story,” said Pitseolak Pfeifer, Qaggiavuut!’s executive director.

The schedule for Qaggiq 2021 includes the premiere of Tuninuq Theatre’s play Akia, as well as musical performances and children’s workshops.

“Qaggiq 2021 will be a taste of the performing arts centre Qaggiavuut has been pursuing,” said Looee Arreak, the artistic director of Qaggiq 2021.

In early 2020, a feasibility study was commissioned by Qaggiavuut!, regarding a proposed performing arts centre in Iqaluit.

It shows that a centre in Iqaluit would support up to 408 full-time jobs and help inject an estimated $1 million into Nunavut’s economy over its first five years.

“I am looking forward to this festival to relive the amazing, ancient, unique culture performances that have been passed down to many generations by our ancestors,” said Arreak.

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