6 Events at the Rubaboo Arts Festival

Celebrate Aboriginal culture at this two-week multidisciplinary festival.


This year marks the 7th Annual Rubaboo Arts Festival. The Rubaboo Arts Festival takes its name from the Métis-Michif word for a type of stew made with what’s left in the food stores — a perfect name for a festival that sustains the spirit through culture. This year’s festival, which takes place from January 27 to February 6, showcases Aboriginal plays, music, dance, food, art and more — and we’ve gathered 6 events that you won’t want to miss.


REDx Talks: Art is the Medicine

REDx Talks, Canada’s first international Indigenous speaker series, makes its Edmonton premiere within the Rubaboo Arts Festival on February 3. The diverse group of speakers at this REDx Talk includes: award-winning chef Shane Chartrand, Cree and Metis artist Dawn Marie Marchand, Grand Chief Tony Alexis, leader of Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation and Grand Chief of Treaty 6, award-winning actor Cody Lightning, and Christine Sokaymoh Frederick, artistic director and co-founder of Alberta Aboriginal Performing Arts, CEO of the Dreamspeakers Film Festival Society, and producer of the Rubaboo Arts Festival. There will also be music by Moe Clark and Stephanie Harpe.

La Cité Francophone, 8627 91 St., redxtalks.org


HUFF by Cliff Cardinal

photography by akipari

Award-winning playwright Cliff Cardinal’s HUFF opens the Rubaboo Arts Festival, and you won’t want to miss this captivating Native Earth production. Cardinal’s work tells the story of Wind and his brothers as they are caught in tough situations and struggling to cope with the death of a loved one. The play runs from January 27 to 30, with a matinee performance followed by a Talk Back on January 29.

Stanley Milner Library, 7 Sir Winston Churchill Square, tixonthesquare.ca


Galerie Reception

photography by Marc J Chalifoux photography

Enjoy the work of several skilled artists at once with Galerie Reception on February 2. This evening of art includes visual art works by Terrance Houle, Dawn Marie Marchand, Lana Whiskeyjack, Arsan Buffin, MJ Belcourt Moses, Brandon Atkinson, Vanessa Brule, and the REdress Project.

La Cité Francophone, 8627 91 St.


Fire Song by Adam Garnet Jones

courtesy of Rubaboo Arts Festival

Adam Garnet Jones’ Fire Song holds the distinction of being one of the first films by an Aboriginal director to focus on wo-spirited people. The film explores the journey of a young Anishinaabe man forced to make a choice between his community and the world outside of it. Rubaboo offers a screening of the film on February 2.

La Cité Francophone, 8627 91 St., tixonthesquare.ca


Festival Fusion

photography by Marc J Chalifoux Photography

On February 4, Rubaboo wraps up a busy week of talks and productions with Festival Fusion, a multi-disciplinary art-filled celebration. Festival attendees will watch art unfold, as Aboriginal and French artists collaborate to create pieces live. The artists present will include Moe Clark, Yvonne Chartrand, Arik Pipestem, Logan Alexis Singers, Daniel Gervais, Darla Daniels, Corbin Poitras, Patrick Ares-Pilon, and Edmonton’s Poet Laureate Pierrette Requier.  

La Cité Francophone, 8627 91 St.


Bow Making Workshop

courtesy of Rubaboo Arts Festival

Learn more about a fascinating traditional art form under the tutelage of Master Bowman Jerry Saddleback. On February 6, Saddleback will take workshop participants through the process of creating a traditional bow.

La Cité Francophone, 8627 91 St.


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