The Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) and the Stratford Festival partnered to present Shawn A-in-chut Atleo, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, at the ICC’s
11th LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium.
Taking place August 9 and 10, the event was the main feature of the Stratford Festival’s inaugural Forum. Over three events we invited audiences to use the work they see onstage to spark new ideas and raise questions about Canada’s big picture.
The Main Event:
11th LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium lecture by Shawn A-in-chut Atleo:
First Nations & the Future of Canadian Citizenship
Avon Theatre, 99 Downie Street, Saturday, August 10, at 10 a.m.
The National Chief reopens Canada’s original conversation on inclusion. Influenced by the founding principles of peace, friendship and mutual respect between Canada’s First Nations and newcomers 400 years ago, his explores how these founding ideals must frame the national dialogue today. The National Chief sits at the very heart of the discussion on where our country has been, and where we all need to help it go. In addition to the National Chief, the lecture featured:
- Introductory remarks by Antoni Cimolino, Stratford’s Artistic Director, Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul;
- Ceremony blessing by Lee Claremont;
- Drumming by James Adams; and
- An audience Q&A led by John Ralston Saul.
Missed the lecture? We’ve got you covered!
Additional Symposium Events:
Adopting One’s Culture with Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul
The Church Restaurant, 70 Brunswick Street, Friday, August 9, at 5:30 p.m.
Over an exquisite dinner at one of Stratford’s finest restaurants, an intimate crowd listened to ICC Co-chairs, Adrienne and John, lead a candid conversation about whether one’s identity if fluid or fixed with special guests, award-winning playwright Tara Beagan, acclaimed actor Graham Greene and esteemed writer Thomas King.
Festival Theatre, 55 Queen Street, Saturday, August 10, at noon
Following the Symposium, National Chief Atleo, Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul gathered with more than 100 lecture attendees for a roundtable discussion on the National Chief's remarks while enjoying food from Stratford’s diverse local restaurants. Each table discussed the following questions and shared the highlights of the conversation with the full room:
1. It’s been 400 years since the Two Row Wampum Treaty, with the symbolic image of two boats traveling in parallel on the same river. Did the content of the National Chief’s speech align with your perceptions / understanding of Canada’s current situation?
2. Democracy isn’t about total agreement, but we all have to live here, and have an equal responsibility as citizens. How has what you heard today influenced your perspective on our ability to ensure that all Canadians are recognized and respected?
3. How do we include the founding principles of our history – Peace, Friendship and Mutual Respect – into our Canadianness?
4. What do you think this conversation will sound like 20 years from now?