Led by The 7 Fingers of Montreal, Artcirq of Igloolik, and Taqqut Productions of Iqaluit, Unikkaaqtuat is a major multidisciplinary production blending circus arts, music, theatre, and video projection.
Inspired by Inuit founding myths and illustrated by the world-renowned artist Germaine Arnaktauyok, this unprecedented creation will highlight the Inuit people, their traditions, and vision for the future, through a collaborative and mutually respectful process bringing Inuit and non-Inuit artists together. The creative process will explore and seek inspiration from Inuit artistic mediums such as throat-singing and drumming, as well as traditional Inuit aspects such as hunting techniques and structures, competitive games, and aesthetics including traditional dress and landscape. A cast of three Inuit musicians, four Inuit circus artists, and four Montreal-based circus artists will partner on stage, supported by a team of similarly diverse designers and technicians, all driven by this uniting goal.
7 artistic directors, 7 visions: The 7 Fingers is a collective that is at once unified and multi-faceted. In 2002, 7 circus artists came together and became The 7 Fingers. Over the course of 16 years, the collective has grown. Every year, projects have given way to new opportunities, as diverse as the very artists themselves: original productions, Broadway shows, artistic collaborations, project direction, custom designed events, performances for Olympic ceremonies, televised creations, immersive performance experiences and much more.
Ambassadors of diversity, the artists have consistently spread their horizons, mixing genres to better tell their stories. Fascinated by the human condition, the 7 Fingers create performances that speak about our world and our time.
Artcirq has grown into an Inuit performing arts collective with the mission to bridge traditional Inuit culture to modern artistic practices by creating meaningful and original work through the performing arts, music, and video. Artcirq members have created a rich body of work featured on a national and international scale, through which Inuit artists express and redefine themselves in their changing world.
Taqqut Productions is an Inuit-owned film production company located in Iqaluit, Nunavut. Taqqut is committed to bringing the stories of the North to the world. The company’s first three short films have screened at festivals in eighteen countries and have won more than twenty international awards. With its film and television projects, Taqqut has established itself as an innovative leader in Northern youth and children’s productions.
The National Creation Fund’s investment of $225,000 will make additional residency periods possible, including a longer residency in Montreal that provides the time required to respect cultural creation practices. The investment will also support the exceptional costs associated with travel from the north.
Canada Council for the Arts New Chapter, First Air, Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, Conseil des Arts de Montréal, Ilagiiktunut Fund - Qikiqtani Inuit Association, and Government of Nunavut’s Department of Economic Development and Transportation. Developed with support from the National Arts Centre’s National Creation Fund.
Premiering in Montreal in June 2019.