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174 until the Opening Ceremony – Four Host First Nations Pavilion!

August 21, 2009

It is interesting how the world works some days.  I have walked past the Queen Elizabeth theatre several times in the last two weeks or so.  And, as the LiveCity Downtown site will be occupying the space next to the theatre (currently a parking lot), I have been looking for signs of construction.  And there is some!  But at the QE theatre not at the LiveCity site yet.  And I have been wondering what the QE is up to.  Their signage indicates that the theatre is being revamped but there is obviously something else going on!  Last night, while researching Sumi the Mascot, I found out what.

Artist's rendition of the Four Host First Nations Pavilion

Artist's rendition of the Four Host First Nations Pavilion

There are building the Four Host First Nations Pavilion.  And as you can see from the image above, it is going to be a pretty fantastic place!  It will consist of a 3,000 square foot, 65 foot high inflated multi-media sphere surrounded by a Coast Salish Longhouse.  Within the 5,000 square foot Longhouse there will be a 1,500 square foot Trading Post and next door, within the theatre, the restaurant is being converted into a Reception Hall featuring Native cuisine and exhibits.

The inflated multi-media sphere will be the show piece of the Pavilion.  It is state-of-the-art and will showcase Native art, business, culture and sport.  I am looking forward to spending some time watching the images projected on the sphere.  Besides the multi-media sphere, there will be themed days, showcasing art from Native groups all across Canada, including Inuit throat-singing, Métis jigging and hoop dancing.  Contemporary art and achievements will also be celebrated.  I believe that the Pavilion will be open to the public, and importantly, will be moved to a new site after the Olympics as a Legacy site.  Something that will benefit the community and Vancouver for years to come.

I imagine that the art of Jody Broomfield will be on display, and possibly the artist himself!  (Check out here and here link to learn more about Jody! (Love your work Jody!!)).  I have a hard time even imaging what else, who else! will be on display!  I had a fabulous experience years ago, at Folk on the Rocks in Yellowknife.  I was volunteering at the Mainstage and had to find the next act.  I found them, three Inuit throat singers, jamming on another stage with a Celtic techno band.  Please do take a moment to think about this…

…    Inuit throat singers (Isumaturnik)… Celtic techno band (Shooglenifty)…   jamming….

I’ve never heard anything like it before or since (so wish I had a recorder with me!).  I am sure that only the people that heard them could ever imagine it.  It was truly awesome, and a terrible shame that I was stressed, trying to figure out how to get the throat singers to their gig on time.  But I got to experience the magic of excellent musicians coming together in the joy of the moment, and, still get my act on stage in time.  It was something I’ll never forget.  I fully believe that experiences like this will happen at the Four Host First Nations (FHFN) pavilion during the Olympics.

What else will you get to see?  I am pretty sure, besides great artists and musicians, you’ll be seeing First Nations athletes.  Possibly including Leah Sulyma, an Inuit hockey goalie from Inuvik, NWT, Travis Jones, a Métis curler from Pouce Coupe, BC and Sammy Kent, a First Nations alpine skier from Whitehorse, YT.  (If Leah, Travis or Sammy read this (or friends or family of), please reply or email me at 2010vanfan@gmail.com, I would love the opportunity to interview you and feature you on this blog!  Jody Bloomfield, that goes for you too!).

The Four Host First Nations Pavilion is going to be an interesting and wonderful place to be.  I really, really hope that I’ll get to visit.  And more importantly, I hope you do!  I’ll try to let you know when events start happening at the Pavilion.  Go!  I’ll need your reports.  I’m already running out of time during the Games  (even during the lead up!) and would love to have your comments on your experiences.  So comment now, or during the Olympics (I think I may not sleep for two weeks straight, but who really needs sleep?).  Please join me in my explorations and adventures.  I look forward to having partners in my journeys!

Thank you and Merci! Andrea

Oh yeah!! I forgot to mention… I bought my Team Canada Hockey jersey today!!  Do you have yours yet??  If not, you can get it at the Bay or at Vancouver2010 store online.  Once again, my disclaimer, I am now employed by the Bay Downtown, I am not trying to sell you anything, I just want to let you know about what’s available.  And I love the new jerseys, I’ve bought one for myself, and will buy some as presents, so this is a product I believe in.  I think you’ll like them too!  Go Canada Go!!

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