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Adäka Cultural Festival Returns with Focus on Northern Connections

May 9, 2022

The Adäka Cultural Festival is delighted to return from June 29 to July 5, 2022 for its 10th anniversary with the theme, ‘Northern Connections’.

For the 2022 Festival, Adäka comes into the light again to include artists from across Canada’s North and guest artists from other Circumpolar countries including Alaska/USA, Greenland, Norway, Sweden and Finland. Over 200 visual and performing artists will gather to showcase their arts, music, and cultures and take part in a rich program full of collaborative opportunities for learning, sharing, presenting, and cultural exchange.

The 2022 Festival will include two stages, one in the KDCC Long house and the other in a tent situated along the Yukon River called Taga Shaw Stage. We will present 7 days | 60+ hours of performances and presentations on our two stages. 

“We are beyond excited to welcome circumpolar guests as we gather, after a challenging two years, to honour our artists and cultures,” says Katie Johnson, Adäka Cultural Festival Co-Producer. “Together we will deepen our northern relationships, celebrate our resiliency and spirit, and warm the hearts of our peoples.”

The Adäka Cultural Festival is a celebration of Indigenous arts and culture that brings us together, shining light on a stunning range of traditional and contemporary visual and performing artists.


Wednesday, June 29 - Opening Ceremony – “Hearts of our People”
Adäka returns! Join us for the opening of Adäka 2022, with throat singing, dance, and more, as we welcome Indigenous artists from across the Circumpolar North in partnership with the Artic Art Summit. this evening features guest artists from the Circumpolar North.

Thursday, June 30 - “Circumpolar Soundscape” Celebration with the New North Collective
Not to be missed, Circumpolar Soundscape is an exquisite collaboration with internationally recognized Indigenous women singer/songwriters from across the North, featuring Greenland’s Nive Nielsen, the Yukon’s Diyet, Sylvia Cloutier – whose roots are in Nunavik, and Leela Gilday from the Northwest Territories. This latest incarnation features original new music on the theme of North from these highly creative artists, backed by stellar northern musicians.

Friday, July 1 - Canada Day- Adäka Style – Community Dance
Get your moccasins ready for some jigging! Our exciting program will feature Gwich’in, Dene and Métis fiddlers plus the quick-footed Teechik Dancers from Old Crow! This upbeat community dance, featuring old style and contemporary fiddlers, is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

Saturday, July 2 - The Spirit of the Drums
Experience the power and heartbeat of diverse drum dancing traditions of First Nations and Inuit peoples from across the North, with over 60 traditional Northern drummers and dancers around the KDCC Fire Pit for an afternoon of drumming, dancing and song. Join us for this spectacular once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to feel the excitement and passion of Spirit of the Drums!

Sunday, July 3 - New Way Forward, New Generations
Where innovation meets tradition – a high-energy showcase of the next generation of performers in hip hop, electric and new media, hosted by Princess Melia. Be ready to dance, move and be inspired!

Monday, July 4 - Dâèakwèandèur Ghay Gháakwèadåindèur -- Our Story in Our Words
World-renowned storyteller Louise Profeit–Leblanc hosts an evening featuring Yukon storytellers. Come into the story circle to laugh, cry, and be mesmerized by stories from Elders and younger storytellers from across the territory.

Tuesday, July 5 - Grand Finale – Contemporary Indigenous Fashion from across the Arctic. 
Ooh-la-la, what better way to cap off Adäka than our styling feature fashion show? Cutting-edge Indigenous designers unveil their latest creations in this dazzling festival finale.


Visual Art Gallery & Exhibitions –Take in high-quality Indigenous visual arts and crafts created by over 70 Indigenous visual artists from across Canada and displayed in the professional 2,300 square foot gallery.  Learn more in artist-led gallery tours, and watch for the special exhibition, in partnership with the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre featuring master artists from across Yukon and beyond. 

Artist Studio Village – Connect with the cultural community as you observe and interact with visual artists transforming raw materials into beautiful works of art in the massive artist studio tent.  Mingle in this informal shared creation space, and learning first-hand about artists’ materials, techniques, and inspiration in both traditional and contemporary styles.

Cultural Presentations – Immerse yourself and gain deeper understanding in these presentations from circumpolar Indigenous artists, knowledge keepers, scholars. The range of topics includes reconciliation, traditional knowledge, climate change, language revitalization, cultural revitalization, land protection, and more.

Public Workshop Program – Sign up for some of the 50+ arts workshops tailored to beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. Some are open to the public, including free activities for youth and children. Other workshops center Indigenous artists as participants, as they network and learn advanced skills from each other.


Volunteer opportunities

The Adäka Cultural Festival is currently seeking volunteers for June 23 to July 7. Volunteers are needed for hospitality, set up and take down, transportation, logistics, front of house, security, gallery sales, COVID safety team, and more. For more information and to sign up, visit

Give with Intention

The Adäka Cultural Festival has taken new approach to our sponsorship program this year. This fresh and unique way to support the Festival allows partners to give with intention. Partners can decide which of the four intentional giving circles align with their support best: community, connect, life, or grow.

Support from the business community, organizations, and Yukon First Nations governments is crucial for the ongoing success of the Festival. If you’re interested in partnering, please contact Kelly Proudfoot at

To learn more about how to give with intention and what this new approach looks like for partners, visit

Adäka funding partners include the Government of Canada, Yukon Government, Canadian Heritage, Canadian Council for the Arts, Makeway Foundation, and Lotteries Yukon.


Launched in July 2011, the mission of the Adäka Cultural Festival is to develop and deliver a world-class, iconic event that showcases, celebrates, and fosters the development of Yukon’s diverse and distinctive Yukon Indigenous arts and culture. YFNCT proudly produces the festival, led by a strong board of Yukon First Nations leaders.