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Film Screening: It starts with a Whisper & These Are My People

Time and Date: Thursday, November 17th, 2022, 6pm – 7pm
Location: 2nd floor, Education Studio

This event is part of AWE at Night. AWE at Night is a free event that requires gallery admission to attend.  Admission to the gallery is $10.  Members always have free admission.

Photography and videography will be present throughout the event. By entering this event site you agree to be filmed or photographed which may be used for marketing or promotional purposes.

To commemorate Treaties Recognition Week, AWE and Turtle Island Aboriginal Education Centre will host a screening of the films It starts with a Whisper by Shelley Niro (30 mins) and These Are My People (1969) by Roy Daniels, Willie Dunn, Michael Kanentakeron Mitchell and Barbara Wilson—members of the Indian Film Crew (IFC) (13 mins). The films will be followed by a community discussion. Soup and fry bread will be served before the screening.

This program is organized in partnership with Turtle Island Aboriginal Education Centre at the University of Windsor and curator Czarina Mendoza. Below the 6 is curated by TD Curatorial Fellow Czarina Mendoza and is generously supported by TD Bank Group. This program is supported by Canada Steamship Lines. The films are distributed by the National Film Board and the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre.



6:00pm – Corn soup and frybread will be served before the screening.

6:00pm – 6:45: It Starts With a Whisper (1993, 29 mins)

6:45pm – 7pm: These Are My People (1969, 13 mins)

It Starts With a Whisper (1993)

Directed by Anna Gronau and Shelley Niro (29 mins), Distributed by the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre 

It Starts With a Whisper was produced in the Six Nations/Brantford area, with an all-Native cast, and features locations on the Grand River which runs through the Six Nations Reserve. The film blends traditional Iroquois imagery, music and themes with motifs from contemporary, secular life. Eighteen-year-old Shanna Sabbath, who has grown up on the Reserve, must now decide what path to follow in life. The choice between traditional and contemporary values seems impossible. She feels all alone, yet she is watched over by ancestral spirits—three ‘matriarchal clowns’ who sometimes appear in the form of her outrageous aunts: Emily, Molly and Pauline. The aunts take Shanna on a mythic journey to Niagara Falls.

These Are My People (1969)

A film by Roy Daniels, Willie Dunn, Michael Kanentakeron Mitchell and Barbara Wilson (13 mins), Distributed by the National Film Board of Canada 

Released in 1969, These Are My People… was the first NFB film made entirely by an Indigenous crew. It was co-directed by Roy Daniels, Willie Dunn, Michael Kanentakeron Mitchell and Barbara Wilson—members of the Indian Film Crew (IFC), an all-Indigenous unit established in 1968 as part of Challenge for Change, a broader organizational initiative to use media to effect social change. One of the first Canadian documentaries to foreground an Indigenous perspective on the history of Indigenous–settler relations, it features Standing Arrow and Tom Porter, from the Kanien’kéhaka (Mohawk) community of Akwesasne, who discuss longhouse religion, culture, government and the impacts of settler arrival on their way of life.

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