Appendix C: Voices Debate
Week.78 The program host Lori Regher was leading a round table discussion about visions of Riel in the arts in 1985. Maria Campbell, then the Artist in Residence at the Prince Albert Public Library, argued that there was no vision of Riel, because no major projects from Native artists received Heritage year funding. Campbell noted that the only grant money most native artists received was for working in small ways on larger projects by non-native artists. Campbell also tried to clarify her position on who has the right to produce art dealing with what she called “native stories.” Campbell said:
I'm not saying that I don't believe that non-native writers or non-native producers should leave our stuff alone. I've had writers that have come to me and said, 'Maria, you have no right to tell us what to write about.' All I'm saying is that if you're going to write it, make sure it's understood that it's from your point of view and use somebody else as your main character – somebody you understand and whom you can speak through.
Recent examples of the Native voice speaking, and singing, in Saskatchewan radio dramas can be found in plays such as The Velvet Devil by Andrea Menard and My Indian Brother by Mirelda Fiddler.79
78 79 Arts Week, hour two, CBC Saskatchewan, November 24, 1985. For more on Velvet Devil, see Annotated Bibiography and Bodyscape. For more on My Indian Brother, see the Annotated Bibiography.