The Mamidosewin Centre hosts a traditional drumming event every Wednesday, from 2 to 2:30 p.m. through the summer to help the Algonquin College community connect, learn, share and celebrate cultural diversity.
The event runs for roughly half-an-hour and is hosted by Nathaniel Parant, the Mamidosewin Centre’s activities and events representative, alongside Indigenous student Maggie Downer, or another community member, to facilitate the drumming.
Biindigan, a welcoming song, Cherokee Morning and the Travelling Song were some of the songs performed at one recent event.
Many Indigenous cultures around the world use drums and percussive instruments to represent beating hearts and the spirit of Mother Earth.
“Every song has a story of where it came from. Some songs are very old, some are newer, and some stem back to time immemorial. Traditionally, songs were a way of relationship building and sharing cultural knowledge between nations, connecting to the Creator and the Land, engaging in ceremony, and much more,” said Parant.
Algonquin College is located on the unceded non-treaty land of the Algonquin Anishnabek peoples. Events like this help celebrate the culture of First Nations people and the diverse Indigenous communities throughout Canada.
“If we think in terms of language families, Europe for example has four or five, including Romantic, Germanic, Slavic, Proto-Greek, and perhaps another,” said Parant. “If you look at a map of language families from Turtle Island (North America), there is 13 language families that each contain a huge diversity of cultures and dialects within each.”
Everyone is welcome at these weekly events.