Interview with Kevin Locke, Wakpala, South Dakota

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Kevin Locke
Kevin Locke (Wakpala, South Dakota) 

Kevin Locke (Tokaheya Inajin in Lakota, translated as “First to Rise”) is a world famous visionary Hoop Dancer, preeminent player of the Indigenous Northern Plains flute, traditional storyteller, cultural ambassador, recording artist, and educator. Kevin is Lakota and Anishinaabe. With nearly forty years of performing to hundreds of thousands of people in over ninety countries, Kevin’s concerts and presentations at performing art centers, festivals, schools, universities, conferences, state and national parks, monuments and historic sites, powwows, and reservations number in the hundreds annually. Eighty percent of Kevin’s presentations are performed through the educational system and shared with children of all ages in schools, community centers, and festivals internationally. As a folk artist, he uses his talents to teach others about his specific tribal background. His special joy is working with children on the reservations to ensure the survival and growth of indigenous culture. Kevin’s goal is to empower today’s youth in culture and “raise awareness of the Oneness we share as human beings.” His belief in the unity of humankind is expressed dramatically in the traditional Hoop Dance, which illustrates “the roles and responsibilities that all human beings have within the hoops (circles) of life.” Kevin Locke dedicates his life’s work to Baha’u’llah.

Interviewed by Raquel Paraíso, 09/18/2020
Raquel Paraíso
Music; United States; Covid-19 Pandemic
Wakpala, South Dakota
Musicians in America during the Covid-19 Pandemic
Society for Ethnomusicology

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