News / Edmonton

Stories on the Hills returns to Fort Edmonton

Event will showcase Indigenous artists and storytellers this weekend.

Todd Houseman, left, and Ben Gorodetsky make up improv duo Folk Lordz, performing at Capitol Theatre Saturday as part of Stories on the Hill.

Curtis Comeau

Todd Houseman, left, and Ben Gorodetsky make up improv duo Folk Lordz, performing at Capitol Theatre Saturday as part of Stories on the Hill.

Fort Edmonton Park will house a diverse lineup of Indigenous artists and storytellers this weekend as Stories on the Hills returns to Capitol Theatre.

The event launched in 2016 to a sold-out crowd with five performances in one night. This year, it’s grown to three days with 18 acts covering dancing, improv, poetry, film and music.

“It’s about Indigenizing the arts scene, which is sort of an act of decolonization,” said Todd Houseman, who makes up one half of the improv duo Folk Lordz with Ben Gorodetsky.

Folk Lordz produced Stories on the Hills and will also perform Saturday.

“When we think of decolonization, I think a lot of people’s assumption is that that means removing the colony – which is not really possible at this point, you cannot remove the colony, it’s fully integrated into this land. But Indigenizing means inserting in place of colonial narratives, the Indigenous narrative,” Houseman continued.

“So, reinserting it back into the mainstream media.”

Folk Lordz launched through Rapid Fire Theatre three years ago and has toured across North America with a brand of physical comedy that draws heavily on each member’s respective storytelling ancestors.

“It’s one part Russian Jewish narrative, one part a plains Cree narrative, and one part whatever the audience wants,” Houseman said.

Other performers this weekend will include Inuit storyteller Jenna Broomfield, filmmaker Coty Savard and blues-rock band Injun Josephine.

This year’s event also featured a new showcase of emerging youth talent on Thursday. 

Shows run Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in Capitol Theatre.

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