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Grantee: Olivia Evans, James Pakootas & Devonte Pearson (T.S. The Solution)

Project Title: Root Experience Festival and Film Score
Year awarded: 2022, Round 3

The Root Experience will be a festival of art, film and performance designed to celebrate the diverse cultures of Spokane and engage audiences across Eastern Washington. A two-night festival featuring and celebrating BIPOC talent from various cultures, including regional filmmakers, artists, culture bearers, and musicians. Day 1 will start at A Place of Truths plaza by the City Hall, and continue at the Spokane Central Library, hosting vendors, art, music, dance, and two short films. Day 2 will be held at The Magic Lantern Theater, presenting vendors, a feature film, 2-3 short films, and a Filmmaker Q&A.

Participants will walk away enriched and fully immersed in a multicultural experience of art, music, film, and the stories that were told. Continuous BIPOC representation in Spokane is beyond important –it is a necessity. The intention of The Root Experience two-day festival is to bring the community together, inspire, uplift/ showcase the BIPOC peoples of Spokane in music and the arts, and to show Spokane the common threads of knowledge, creativity, family, storytelling, and other themes which connect various cultures. With SAGA support, Olivia Evans (an award-winning, multidisciplinary visual artist and producer) and Devonte Pearson (a Hip-Hop artist & award winning sound engineer with over a decade of experience) will plan and execute various facets of “The Root Experience.”

Additionally, with SAGA funding, James Pakootas and Devonte Pearson (T.S. The Solution) will host an artist’s residency at Panoramic Dreams to write and score the soundtrack album to ROOT, a film which explores traditional Colville stories, transforming them into contemporary musical expressions. Pakootas is an award-winning artist, producer, and filmmaker from The Colville Confederated Tribes, who cultivates change through the power of words.  Together, and with additional collaborators, this trio will build experiences where BIPOC artists, traditionally marginalized from mainstream opportunities, can feel supported and inspired to continue growing their creative careers here in Spokane.