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Forum Home - Go Back > Pow Wow Arena > Head Staff First Time as Head Male! First Time as Head Male!

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Old 02-25-2013, 06:19 PM   #1
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First Time as Head Male!

Hey guys, I was asked to be head male at a pow wow coming up this April. What Should I expect? What do I need to know? Just desperate for some enlightenment on this position!! Thanks!
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Old 02-25-2013, 07:25 PM   #2
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Be respectful
Be prepared for whatever the committee may ask of you.
Start dancing first...every song. well , except the ones you don't dance to.
Try to introduce your self and shake everyone's hand....especially the other men dancers.
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Old 02-25-2013, 07:50 PM   #3
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Encourage people to dance in all the inter-tribals, pull them out of their seats LOL
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:02 PM   #4
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Old 02-25-2013, 08:08 PM   #5
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1. Don't be afraid. (Seriously.)
2. You are the Head Dancer.
3. You were chosen by people who respect your opinion.

The arena is YOURS, do things as your people do. For example, some tribes dance counter clockwise. If yours does, do it. :)

Also (just me), start the two-step as a two-step, not a rabbit dance. If you want to rabbit dance once started, feel free! :)
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:56 PM   #6
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Thanks guys! keep it coming! The only thing I know is what you guys have told me (knew some before).
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
The arena is YOURS, do things as your people do. For example, some tribes dance counter clockwise. If yours does, do it. :)
And be ready for some guff if you do this.

Several years ago I got a very upset phone call from a gentleman who was Shawnee, and his folks danced COUNTER clockwise. He attended a powwow in Indiana (at the site of an old NDN settlement), and asked the MC (who belonged to a western plains tribe) if they could dance COUNTER clockwise for one dance, in honor of the Shawnee who had lived in the area. The poor guy got reamed one side and down another, publically and loudly.

An old vet friend of his was invited to carry one of the Eagle staffs, and in his tribe, there is no dishonor in letting the end of the staff rest on Mother Earth. Other tribes, this is a disgrace. So the poor vet got chewed out publically and loudly, in the ring, in front of EVERYONE. He just took it with tears running down his cheeks.

This was several years back, so hopefully the hurt is mended now. But PLEASE be aware that other tribes have different traditions. And be kind.
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
1. Don't be afraid. (Seriously.)
2. You are the Head Dancer.
3. You were chosen by people who respect your opinion.

The arena is YOURS, do things as your people do. For example, some tribes dance counter clockwise. If yours does, do it. :)

Also (just me), start the two-step as a two-step, not a rabbit dance. If you want to rabbit dance once started, feel free! :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmigoKumeyaay View Post
Encourage people to dance in all the inter-tribals, pull them out of their seats LOL
Yup. Be encouraging.

We've just been attending powwows for several years, and there are still events where I go in Regalia, but won't go into the ring because I am afraid of offending someone (see my post above).

It's a bit scary out there, sometimes.
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:18 PM   #9
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Quite simply, if you're the Head Dancer, they acquiesce to YOU if they desire to dance. Disrespectful? No. You were given the honor to represent something. It would be a shame if you didn't.

That's why you're the HEAD DANCER.

You may explain what you're doing but you do NOT have to explain why you do it unless you desire to.

Yes, all tribes are different. When they're the Head Dancer they can do it as their tribe does. :)

Not starting a fight, I'm just saying that guff -- at me -- wouldn't last very long.
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:13 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeannB View Post
And be ready for some guff if you do this.

Several years ago I got a very upset phone call from a gentleman who was Shawnee, and his folks danced COUNTER clockwise. He attended a powwow in Indiana (at the site of an old NDN settlement), and asked the MC (who belonged to a western plains tribe) if they could dance COUNTER clockwise for one dance, in honor of the Shawnee who had lived in the area. The poor guy got reamed one side and down another, publically and loudly.

An old vet friend of his was invited to carry one of the Eagle staffs, and in his tribe, there is no dishonor in letting the end of the staff rest on Mother Earth. Other tribes, this is a disgrace. So the poor vet got chewed out publically and loudly, in the ring, in front of EVERYONE. He just took it with tears running down his cheeks.

This was several years back, so hopefully the hurt is mended now. But PLEASE be aware that other tribes have different traditions. And be kind.
Make sure you are running a double line in the dance area for dancer that are dancing COUNTER clockwise ortherwise its gonna be a train wreck out there.
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:40 PM   #11
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Make sure you are running a double line in the dance area for dancer that are dancing COUNTER clockwise ortherwise its gonna be a train wreck out there.
GOOD idea! LOL!
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Old 02-26-2013, 03:45 PM   #12
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GOOD idea! LOL!
Thank you LeannB I just smached into akid at a powwow i was at.
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