Birdsinging to Open CalArts’ Wild Beast Concert Series

Posted By Toyacoyah Brown September 13th, 2016 Last Updated on: September 13th, 2016

An evening of Native American Birdsinging will launch the 2016-17 season of the Wild Beast Concert Series at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). Elders Wally Antone  (Quechan) and Walter Holmes, Jr. (Cahuilla) will perform traditional Birdsongs. Derek Duro (Cahuilla) and the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians will represent the renewed interest in this musical and cultural legacy among younger generations.

The open-air screening and concert take place on Saturday, October 1, 2016 at 7 p.m. at the Wild Beast music pavilion on the CalArts campus. Hosted by the Herb Alpert School of Music at CalArts, the Wild Beast Concert Series is free and open to the public. Reservations are suggested.

The Birdsinging traditions of the native tribes of Southern California are among the most significant expressions of Native American oral history and among the most important legacies of world music. Before the musicians take the stage to perform Cahuilla Birdsongs, there will be a screening of We Are Birds: A California Indian Story, a documentary that chronicles the resurgence of the tradition through the eyes of Birdsingers, dancers, elders, and cultural preservationists.

“It was a dream to participate in the culture my family left, educating the community about Birdsinging by utilizing perspectives from within the culture,” said the film producer and director Albert Chacon (Cupeno-Cahuilla- Apache), who will attend the screening and concert.

In a review of the film, composer Eyvind Kang said, “With big-hearted generosity towards its subjects and viewers, the film serves as an ideal introduction to Birdsinging. While conveying what Walter Holmes, Jr. calls the glory of the culture, the film situates itself as a part of the general resurgence of indigeneity, demonstrating the possibility of simultaneously following the strict protocols of tradition while gathering the courage to live this tradition in today’s technological era.”


A screening of We Are Birds: A California Indian Story and a performance by Native American Birdsingers, Wally Antone and Walter Holmes, Jr.


Saturday, October 1, 2016

We Are Birds: A California Indian Story screens at 7:00 pm

Concert performed by Wally Antone and Walter Holmes, Jr. at 8:00 pm


The Wild Beast Music Pavilion on the campus of California Institute of the Arts (CalArts)

24700 McBean Parkway, Valencia CA 91355

Free admission

Reservations suggested

Click here for directions and more information

For information call 661 253 7825

BirdSingingCalArts (16)

One of the first schools in the United States to offer degree programs in World Music performance, CalArts has a history of nurturing traditional and new forms of music from a variety of cultures. Students in the World Music Program closely study music and dance practices from around the globe, while simultaneously acquiring solid grounding in music theory, musicianship skills, and music history and literature.

Ranked as America’s top college for students in the arts by Newsweek/The Daily Beast, California Institute of the Arts has set the pace for educating professional artists since 1970. Offering rigorous undergraduate and graduate degree programs through six schools—Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater—CalArts has championed creative excellence, critical reflection, and the development of new forms and expressions. As successive generations of faculty and alumni have helped shape the landscape of contemporary arts, the Institute first envisioned by Walt Disney encompasses a vibrant, eclectic community with global reach, inviting experimentation, independent inquiry, and active collaboration and exchange among artists, artistic disciplines and cultural traditions.

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About Toyacoyah Brown

Toyacoyah Brown is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation, currently living in Chicago. She received her B.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and an M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. When she's not scouring the Internet for fun things to share with PowWows.com readers you can find her digging for vinyl in her local record store or curling up with a good book.

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mary lawrence

I would really want to see this….ever in SC???? Colorado??? Nya Weh!!

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