I take up the thread from where we left it; in spring 2016. We had very fun at the Artic Arts Festival in Harstad, Norway, despite the wintry weather with freezing wind, rain and even snowflakes. The shops in town got invaded by Sámi dressed people buying umbrellas, rain capes, gloves and woollen long johns. One should assume that Sámi know to dress up in warm clothes, but we got fooled by the name of the month June and the weather forecast (as usual😉). Nevertheless, we had great concerts in several venues in Harstad and our main concert at the Culture House was a wonderful experience. The accommodation was quite challenging, a sport hall at a local school with a broken fridge, but the chilly weather came to our rescue. We learned how to store food outside without getting robbed by seagulls, and that the Finnish earplugs in small, medium and large sizes are the best ones! One always learn something new with Sámi Jienat. 😊
The autumn 2016 we concentrated on rehearsals for the big event Tråante 2017, February 2017 and had rehearsals in Guovdageaidnu and Heahttá. Tråante 2017 was a once-in-a-lifetime event. All our concerts went well, outside and inside here and there in Trondheim, but the most memorable one is the participating in the religious service in the amazing cathedral Nidarosdomen. It was a historically moment for all the Sámi which will never be forgotten! I was lucky to get the honour of singing a verse solo on the hymn Giitu. Even though I was well prepared, it felt like I was going to faint, especially when all live cameras came running and took close-ups of a trembling me, and broadcasted it all over the universe. I was not prepared for that. But there must have been a very good and sacred power with me in that cathedral at that moment, because the song came by itself and filled the whole church with the beautiful Sámi words of Nils-Aslak Valkeapää, all alone. They wanted to be heard! It was a wonderful church to sing in and an experience one does not forget. The whole event with Sámi from all over the Sápmi, filling the streets and marketplaces of Trondheim with beautiful clothing, songs, yoiks, exhibitions, food, handicraft etc etc, was not only a remarkable happening in the Sámi history, but for the locals and Norwegian people as well. Never have so many Sámi been gathered together at one place before, been so visible and given such space at a Norwegian city. We are grateful.
After Tråante 2017 we had a low-activity spring. But now we have collected energy for the next season where we end our project Luođit Sámis. We will participate in the opening of the Sámi Parliament in October 11th, rehearsal and concerts in Ivalo in November and in Gällivarre in March 2018 and do the rest of the recording of our CD with yoiks from the project.
We keep in touch!