Hoop Dancing

Awarded 1st prize at the 2012 Annual World Championship Hoop Dancing Competition in Phoenix, Arizona, USA, Dallas is World Champion Hoop Dancer for the third year. Dallas Arcand is a renowned international performer, and regardless of the size of the event, he always electrifies his audiences.

"The Flower"

Dallas' Aboriginal name is "Dancing Buffalo Man' (Nimihto Paskwa Mostôs Napew). Aboriginal names are chosen at birth, and for many years he had no idea that dancing would become a major influence in his life.

Dallas discovered the hoop dance as a teen. Now, the 2012 World Champion, he delights in sharing his culture through this athletic and creative art form.

He started dancing at the age of 14 with "White Braid Society Dance Group," an Edmonton based group, who were members of the Canadian Native Friendship Centre. Dallas sang with the Pow Wow drum and danced both the Men's Fancy Dance and the Hoop Dance.

He started dancing with 8 hoops and within a year he progressed to 10, 19, and finally 25 hoops. Dallas taught himself the intricate combinations that make up the hoop dance by watching other dancers. Several elements seen in his performances are uniquely his and are performed by no other hoop dancer in the world. He has danced at many Pow Wows in several provinces in Canada and has performed the Hoop Dance for audiences attending exhibitions, conferences, festivals, fashion shows, functions, and theatre productions. He was a featured performer in 2006 at the internationally renowned Calgary Exhibition and Stampede.

Dallas Arcand - World Champion Hoop Dancer

Dallas has won many prizes and competitions with his Hoop Dancing talent, including the2012, 2007 and 2006 World Championship Hoop Dance Competitions in Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

Annual World Championship Hoop Dance Competition

The chance to clinch the World Champion Hoop Dancer title draws together the very best Aboriginal hoop dancers from throughout the United States and Canada for one spectacular weekend of athleticism, speed and grace. And on February, 2012, at the Heard Museum, the world's top hoop dancers showcased their skills in a brilliant presentation of the intertribal hoop dance.

Over the years, the intertribal hoop dance has grown to incorporate creative designs, difficult manipulations of the hoops and intricate footwork. Each dancer presents a unique variation of the intertribal hoop dance, weaving in aspects of his or her distinct traditions and cultures. Individual routines are presented using as few as four to as many as 50 hoops, which are shaped to create a variety of designs including animals, butterflies and globes.

Winners are judged based on five criteria - precision, timing/rhythm, showmanship, creativeness and speed.

Competitors perform in five divisions including Tiny Tot (under 5 years), Youth (5 to 12), Teen (13 to 17), Adult (18 and older) and Senior (40 years and older). The World Championship Hoop Dance Contest is held in the Heard Museum's outdoor grass amphitheater and grounds and is sponsored by Casino Arizona.

The competition was fierce, the weekend was picturesque and contestants reached record numbers at the 22nd Annual World Championship Hoop Dance Contest at the world famous Heard Museum.

Dallas Arcand, Cree, from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, received the World Champion title, a trophy and a cash award. In both 2005 and 2004, Dallas received second place honors with an impressive 227 points. Dallas was the first Cree dancer to win this honor.

8,000 spectators attended the two-day event, despite many other events occurring across the Valley and the Super Bowl. The event, considered the most competitive hoop dance contest in the country, was generously sponsored by Casino Arizona for the fifth year.

"I feel awesome. I'm overwhelmed. I almost cried when they announced it, I was so excited," said Arcand, Cree, who lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. "I'm going to call all my friends. I remember what they said before I left – even if you don't win, you're still a winner. I'm going to go have a fiesta now," added Arcand.

 

In this video, Dallas speaks briefly on Aboriginal dancing:

Featured Video, Heritage Community Foundation - A number of videos showcasing Aboriginal content have been included in a DVD called "11,000 Years Celebrating Aboriginal Life in Alberta," produced to commemorate this province’s centenary. In his video, Dallas speaks on Hoop Dancing and it's cultural significance. VIEW VIDEO

 

 

"Everything in our culture comes in fours; that's why I have a representation of the four directions on my outfit. The four medicine wheel is also made up of the four directions – emotional, physical, mental and spiritual self. When we have all these elements in yourself and they're all equally balanced, we're centred, grounded."