SEARHC hosts Gene Tagaban ‘Art of Storytelling’ workshops

November 23 2010

The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) will host noted Tlingít performer and artist, Gene Tagaban, for workshops in the “Art of Storytelling” in Haines, Klukwan and Skagway. Tagaban will lead two public workshops — a drum-making workshop at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 9, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood/Alaska Native Sisterhood Hall in Haines, and an “Art of Storytelling” workshop/performance at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 10, at the Skagway Traditional Council building in Skagway. Both of these are free and open to the community. Tagaban also will lead several workshops for school classes in Haines, Klukwan and Skagway that are for local students. Tagaban, who owns RavenDreaming Productions, shares his wisdom and talent through dance, Native flute and storytelling. He is of combined Tlingít, Cherokee and Filipino heritage. Tagaban, whose Tlingít name is Gaay Yaaw, is of the Tak’deintaan Raven Freshwater Sockeye clan of Hoonah and a child of the Wooshkeetaan Eagle Shark clan of Juneau. Tagaban started dancing when he was 5 years old, and he grew up listening to and learning the songs, dances and stories of Alaska’s Tlingít people. The workshops are funded by SEARHC grant programs that address chronic disease prevention with subsistence food harvesting and preparation alongside traditional arts and wellness. Tagaban will guide participants through the structure and art of storytelling as a celebration of wellness. His teaching blends commentary, comedy, story, laughter, insight, vision, spirit and honor. Tagaban’s programs emphasize the lessons one gains and how one learns to be a better person through stories. These lessons involve the role of humans in the natural world and the importance of family and lineage in one’s own identity. He also will introduce digital storytelling and discuss how it can be used to share stories. For more details about the shows, please call SEARHC WISEWOMAN Women’s and Colorectal Health Programs Health Systems Specialist Becky Koslovich at 966-8936. For more information about Gene Tagaban and his workshops, go to