Native Performance Culture and the Rhythm of (Re)Conciliation: Remembering Ourselves in Deep Time is a multi-disciplinary working group at the University of Toronto that has dedicated itself to a process of relaxed, land-based research (informed by Indigenous research principles and protocols) to gently unearth, listen and respond to the buried histories of “discovery,” dehumanization, extraction, and eugenics that continue to exercise their influence on the research practices and pedagogical models of the Academy and hence on the hearts and minds of (often, well-intentioned) settler-Canadians.
In collaboration with the Digital Dramaturgy Lab2, “Deep Time” has embarked upon “Storying the 94,” an exercise in archeological dramaturgy that emerges from somatic encounters with specific sites and archival histories pertaining to these sites. “Storying the 94” will unfold in a series of site-specific performative interventions on the St. George campus of the University of Toronto. Through these interventions, we work to re-presence each seemingly neutral plot of “Terra Nullius” upon which an institutional edifice has been erected, marking it as a place where destructive power was exerted—a force that continues to reverberate through Indigenous blood, bone and memory today. This project will unfold over 4 movements corresponding to the solstices and equinoxes that signal seasonal and planetary shifts. While our hopes were that this project could be undertaken as a series of live events, current circumstances do not offer any surety pertaining to the scheduling of any live performance. Hence, we have decided to introduce this with a Prelude that combines digital technologies with live, site-specific, socially distanced performance.
The Prelude – Streaming Life: Storying the 94–will be livestreamed on 21 September at 8:30pm.