x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Native American dancers to kick off summer festival

The opening act for Summer in Abu Dhabi showcases traditions from half a world away: Native American dancers representing 12 tribes.

Delwin Fiddler, one of the Native Americans appearing at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.
Delwin Fiddler, one of the Native Americans appearing at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.

The opening act for Summer in Abu Dhabi showcases traditions from half a world away: Native American dancers representing 12 tribes. The festival, which begins this week, is expected to draw more than 150,000 to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. And the Native Nations Dance Theatre will kick things off with a whirl of colour and motion, officials say. "This troupe promises to be a fantastic cultural experience for young and old alike," said Faisal al Sheikh, the head of events at the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority.

He said they had "performed at some of the most prestigious institutions in the world, including the Smithsonian Discovery Theatre, the National Museum of the American Indian and on Broadway". The troupe will include Chief Elk Head, a descendant of Sitting Bull, the Sioux chief at the Battle of Little Big Horn. Based in Philadelphia and South Dakota, the dancers have performed in more than 500 schools across North America and Britain. The festival, which was created to provide air-conditioned entertainment during the traditionally slow summer, will open on July 1 and run until August 15.

jgerson@thenational.ae