Kevin Locke, an internationally recognized Native American dancer and preeminent player of the indigenous flute, will perform Saturday, February 14, 2009 at the at the Northern Virginia Bahá’í Center. He is a visionary Hoop Dancer, the preeminent player of the indigenous Northern Plains flute, and a traditional storyteller, cultural ambassador, recording artist and educator. Originally from South Dakota, raised on the Standing Rock Reservation, he has performed and lectured in nearly 80 countries.
In rhythm with the beating of a drum, Kevin creates images of life emerging from the darkness of winter into the exuberance of spring. Seamlessly flowers, butterflies, eagles, stars, the sun & moon merge into each other. This traditional dance is a celebration of the annual rebirth of nature, but for Kevin it is even more: “The hoops represent Unity, while the four colors of the hoops black, red, yellow and white represent the four human races, the four directions, four seasons, four winds and more. As the Dance concludes, all 28 hoops are interlocked in a spherical union illustrating the interdependence we all share and cannot truly live without.”
Kevin Locke is acknowledged to have played an essential role in the revitalization of the indigenous flute tradition which teetered on the brink of extinction just twenty years ago. As Kevin stated on the National Endowment for the Arts website, “Lakota/Dakota courting songs were once an essential expression of our intricate social customs and were used in specific situations during the courting process. The social conditions which gave rise to this expression are no longer in force. However, the tradition is a distinct treasure of South Dakota, and the values which gave rise to the use of the flute are those which our current society would do well to heed.” Since 1982, Kevin has recorded twelve albums of music and stories, most recently First Flute, Open Circle, Keepers of the Dream, and Dream Catcher.
He has served as a cultural ambassador for the United States Information Service since 1980. Deeply committed to the conservation of Earth’s resources for future generations, Kevin was a delegate to the 1992 Earth Summit in Brazil and a featured performer and speaker at the 1996 United Nations Habitat II Conference in Turkey. In 1990, Kevin was awarded a National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) which recognized him as a “Master Traditional Artist who has contributed to the shaping of our artistic traditions and to preserving the cultural diversity of the United States.”
We invite you to come and be part of this very special performance. “All of the people have the same impulses, spirit and goals,” reflects Kevin. “Through my music and dance, I want to create a positive awareness of the Oneness of humanity.”
At 10:00 am there will be a special performance of hoop dancing and storytelling especially for parents and kids. It is offered without charge, although donations are accepted to cover expenses. Then from 7:00 – 9:00 pm Kevin will perform “Lakota Love Songs.” The evening event requires reservation and a ticket. Tickets are priced at 1 for $15 or 2 for $25. Tickets are available at the Northern Virginia Bahá’í Center Bookstore. Please call 703-444-0019 or email facilitymgr [at] novabc.org to reserve your tickets. For more information contact Ruth Allen703-620-4593, 703-209-5835, ruth.allen [at] gmail.com.