Lytton’s River Festival-goers got an exceptional treat on Sunday when Kevin Loring and his Savage Society premiered Songs of the Land Phase 2, Battle of the Birds.
Based on a traditional Nlakap’amux story about a community confronting the issue of domestic violence, Battle of the Birds is set in the time when animals appeared like humans with animal attributes. When Bird nation finds out that Bald Eagle is abusive to his wife, they confront him and try to rescue her.
The story is beautifully told through narration, song and deed. When the community tries and fails to make Eagle see the error of his ways, it is the young Red Hawk who finally teaches him humility. Chastised, Eagle dons a white head and bows to his wife after the rest of the birds are restored by Red Hawk’s medicine.
The performance included an award winning cast as well as community members, and included Sam Bob, Renae Morriseau, Sandy Scofield, Ron Dean Harris and Loring, who is is an award winning actor, playwright and artistic director of the Savage Society.
Amy Charlie and Charon Spinks narrated.