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The Sacred Sundance: The Transfer of a Ceremony

The Sacred Sundance: The Transfer of a Ceremony

| 1 h 9 min

This feature-length documentary chronicles the Sundance ceremony brought to Eastern Canada by William Nevin of the Elsipogtog First Nation of the Mi'kmaq. Nevin learned from Elder Keith Chiefmoon of the Blackfoot Confederacy in Alberta. Under the July sky, participants in the Sundance ceremony go four days without food or water. Then they will pierce the flesh of their chests in an offering to the Creator. This event marks a transmission of culture and a link to the warrior traditions of the past.

  • participant
    Kani Malsom
    William Nevin
    Bernard Jerome
    Keith Chiefmoon
    Nathan Chasing Horse
    Pamela Red Cloud
    Melvin, Jr. Brewer
    Hubert Francis
    Eugene Sock
    Stephanie Simon
    Cynthia Davidson
  • writer
    Brian J. Francis
  • director
    Brian J. Francis
  • producer
    Kent Martin
  • cinematography
    Nigel Markham
  • sound
    Alex Salter
  • editor
    Rohan Fernando
  • production supervisor
    Patricia Coughran
  • additional sound
    Rohan Fernando
    Kent Martin
  • original music composer
    Ronaldo Richard
    Hubert Francis
  • additional music
    David R. Maracle
  • research
    Brian J. Francis
  • sound editor
    Alex Salter
  • re-recording
    Allan Scarth
  • video mastering
    Steve Cook
  • on-line
    Steve Cook
  • production co-ordinator
    Stephanie Coolen
    Vanessa Larsen
  • marketing manager
    Amy Stewart Gallant
    Philip Moscovitch
  • centre administrator
    John William Lutz


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Ages 14 to 17

Health/Personal Development - Substance Use and Abuse/Addiction
History and Citizenship Education - Culture and Currents of Thought (1500-present)
History and Citizenship Education - Imperialism and Colonization (1800s-1900s)
Indigenous Studies - Identity/Society

Rituals and rites of passage are common through all cultures. For Indigenous peoples they are especially important, given the near eradication of their people and culture in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Have students discuss rituals in their family, culture or society that help them grow or belong. How might this be particularly important for young men? How do these rituals help instill a sense of belonging?

The Sacred Sundance: The Transfer of a Ceremony
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