Alianait Arts Festival, Nunavut’s largest circumpolar arts event, will showcase an exciting lineup of performers, including many Inuit and Indigenous artists. e
Our 2018 line-up includes Greenland’s hottest rock band Nanook. Dazzling and soulful Juno-nominee Cris Derksen will also be on our stage, along with multiple award-winning indigenous artists Leela Gilday and Twin Flames. Australian powerhouse duo This Way North and Newfoundland’s own Séan McCann are joining Alianait this year. Banjo-picking singer-songwriter Old Man Luedecke, Igloolik’s rising star Lazarus Qattalik and Arviat's Agaaqtoq will make encore appearances this year as well.
The festival will once again include a collaboration featuring Indigenous artists from around the world, and this year’s theme Dreams, will be directed by Sylvia Cloutier.
Check out our stellar line-up:
NANOOK - Greenland’s most popular band, Nanook will release their fourth studio album in May, just in time for Alianait. More than 100 Iqaluit fans lined up for autographs and selfies when they were here in 2015. We are thrilled to bring them for their second Canadian gig.
LEELA GILDAY - A passionate singer/songwriter and soulful performer, Leela has a voice that comes straight from the heart. Confessing her stories to her audiences with a gutsy voice and open stage presence, Gilday weaves her experiences as a northerner, a member of the Dene nation, and a traveler in a beautiful world.
LAZARUS QATTALIK - Lazarus had hearts melting at his debut Alianait performance earlier this year. His first album Iqippagit is already becoming a household favourite among Inuktitut music lovers. On March 9th, Lazarus performed on the Yukon Arts Centre stage as part of the Yukon Arts Summit. He will be joined by his bandmates Allan Kangok, Billy Jay Ammaq and Jordan Ipkarnak at this year’s festival.
SÉAN McCANN - McCann's love for Newfoundland and Labrador folk songs shot him to international fame as a founding member of the renowned group Great Big Sea. After millions of albums sold, countless hit songs, and record-breaking tours around the world, Séan now tours as a solo artist in intimate venues where he can connect with his audience face-to-face with music bringing peace, love and happiness.
CRIS DERKSEN - Juno nominated Indigenous cellist / composer Cris Derksen is originally from Northern Alberta, which forms many of her musings, as a half Cree, half Mennonite 2 spirit human. Lately she's been traipsing around the globe with her 2 buds: Nimkii Osawamick - hoop dance and Jesse Baird - drums.
TWIN FLAMES - a captivating duo that combines two accomplished singer songwriters Chelsey June an Algonquin/Cree/Métis woman and Jaaji an Inuk/Mohawk man from Nunavik and Kahnawake. Twin Flames play both Inuttitut and English folk-pop-rock with an acoustic roots flavour and an Americana feel. This powerful duo won the 2016 Canadian Folk Music Award for Aboriginal Songwriters of the Year.
THIS WAY NORTH - Australian's Leisha Jungalwalla and Cat Leahy, a guitar/drum two-piece with a deceptive and powerful full band sound. The duo put on a colourful show featuring honest songs about everyday life. Their exciting show-WOMAN-ship is marked with tight guitar licks and lush slide guitar tones, live guitar looping and bombastic, mesmerizing drumming.
AGAAQTOQ - A Nunavut favourite, we are excited to bring Arviat’s prolific songwriter, Agaaqtoq back to Alianait!! He is considered one of Nunavut’s best rising talents, winning the hearts of his audience with his engaging performance and timeless Inuktitut songs. Agaaqtoq recorded his self-titled debut album in 2014 and we are looking forward to his next release!!
EVAN REDSKY - Evan James Redsky is a singer/songwriter from Blind River, ON by way of Toronto. Having spent five years with Juno-nominated rock group Single Mothers - he has since left to finish work on his debut effort. The Danny Wolfe EP is a return to Redsky's indigenous story telling roots.
HINNARIK - Popular Greenlandic children’s entertainer, Hinnarik released his first movie Hinnarik Sinnattunilu in 2009 and it broke all records in Greenland cinemas. His debut CD, released in 2011, sold out as he toured all of Greenland.
JANE’S PARTY - Toronto-based pop-rock quartet Jane’s Party is Devon Richardson, Tom Ionescu, Jeff Giles, and Zach Sutton. The band has supported and toured alongside the likes of the Arkells, Sam Roberts Band, LIGHTS, Blue Rodeo, Stars, Lord Huron, The Rural
Alberta Advantage, and many others. Their mission is to make everyone dance.
THE ARVIAT BAND - The Arviat Band has been together for over 20 years, playing at countless festivals all over Nunavut, and Northern Quebec. Their Inuktitut lyrics are unforgettable. During Simon Sigjariaq and Charlie Panigoniak early days in music, the Arviat Band were essential in developing the unique country sound Arviat is known for.
OLD MAN LUEDECKE - is none other than two-time Juno Award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter and banjo player Chris Luedecke of Chester, Nova Scotia. His latest release, Domestic Eccentric was recorded in a cabin in the snowy Nova Scotia woods. Not since Loudon Wainwright III has anyone written so honestly, so openly, or with such aching tenderness and good humour about family life.
HANS HENRIK POULSEN - Hans-Henrik Suersaq Poulsen is a multi-talented, multi-dimensional artist who has been entertaining people since the age of 11. An actor, throat singer, drum dancer and musician, Hans Henrik has been a favourite performer at Alianait for many years. He performed with Akukittuq in 2014, as part of Alianait’s Young Circumpolar Artists Collaboration in 2015, and was featured in the National Theatre of Greenland’s musical theatre production ‘Minik’ in 2016.
BROOKLYN DORAN - Brooklyn Doran is an indie folk singer-songwriter, originally from Kenora, Ontario now based in Toronto. Her live show weaves song and storytelling, from humorous anecdote to heartfelt ballad. Her music has snatched the hearts of fans from coast to coast.
AHI - Canadian alt-folk songwriter AHI (pronounced “eye”) has traveled 100,000 miles, armed with an acoustic guitar and a voice like “gravel on silk”. Winner of the 2017 Canadian Songwriting Competition and one of NPR's favourite discoveries of the year, this soulful troubadour is one of Canada's most promising new voices.
LEETIA KALLUK - First prize winner of the 2017 Qilaut Song Contest, Leetia Kalluk is a fresh face in the Nunavut music scene and we are delighted to include her in this year’s Festival line-up.
QIAJUK DANCERS - Miyuki Daorana & Maria Høegh Lyberth are dance students with the Qiajuk Dance Studio in Nuuk. Miyuki and Maria performed ‘Arctic Dreams’ in Nov. 2017 and are creating a new dance especially for the 2018 Alianait Arts Festival.