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Dancing to the beat of a drum

Dez Loreen
Northern News Services

Inuvik (Apr 28/06) - Scott Kasook knows the importance of tradition and passes it on to younger generations through drum dancing.

"I think it's important to work with the youth so they can have a sense of tradition," said Kasook.

NNSL Photo/graphic

Scott Kasook, right, dances with one of his pupils to one of the Inuvialuit songs during the heritage fair on Friday afternoon. Kasook has been with the Inuvik drummers and dancers group since 1982. He stays involved to pass on the traditions of the people before him. - Dez Loreen/NNSL photo

He grew up to the sound of the drum beating and remembers watching his grandparents Tommy and Sarah Kalinek perform the dances.

"They loved dancing. I can remember watching them when I was just a kid," said Kasook, who is now 40-years-old.

It was 1982 when Kasook joined up with the Inuvik drummers and dancers to share his knowledge of the dance.

"I've learned a lot of the songs over the years, hearing others sing and dance," said Kasook.

The group has been involved with Sir Alexander Mackenzie school, most recently with classes which taught young people how to dance traditionally.

"We were in the school from January to March and that was fun," said Kasook.

He said the group performs at every function they are invited to, and is sure they will stay busy throughout the spring and summer months.

A lot of his time is spent with the group of drummers and dancers, and Kasook said it keeps him busy while he's in town. "I haven't been on the land in a while. I've been turned into a city boy," said Kasook with a laugh.