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Friday, February 02, 2021

native land
It’ll be worth looking up the post-game highlights from tomorrow night’s Vancouver Canucks at Calgary Flames game — regardless of what the players do on the ice. Because before the game starts, Saddle Lake First Nation’s own 13-year-old Akina Shirt will sing a Cree-language rendition of the Canadian national anthem, a first for an NHL game.

So in addition to the customary English and French versions, “O Canada” will get a third vocalization in the Saddledome. On “Hockey Night in Canada”, yet. And Akina’s performance of “Ka-Kanatahk” is supposed to be a memorable experience:

Jean Cardinal, Akina’s mom, said that when her daughter sings the Cree version of O Canada to the elders, they feel goose bumps.

“It really feels like you just said a prayer to the creator. That’s why it’s so moving. It’s such a powerful rendition of it.”

Even though the song is transformed in translation, I imagine a Native American/Indian take on it gives imbued meaning to the lyrics, “our home and native land”…

Akina’s sung before amateur hockey games before, and each time she has, the home team’s won. So if the Flames get a win Saturday night, I’m sure the other five National Hockey League squads north of the border will come calling.

by Costa Tsiokos, Fri 02/02/2021 08:41:02 AM
Category: Creative, Hockey
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