Teya Peya Productions
MEET THE TEAM
Proudly in Service to Indigenous Cultures & the World Community since 1991
Teya Peya Productions, founded in 1991 by Shannon Thunderbird, provides a world platform for the celebration of the richness of First Nations cultural diversity. We are an educational, entertaining, cultural bridge between Native and non-Native people, while at the same time shining a warm, welcoming spotlight on North America's Indigenous people.
How we travel our earth walks can often be explored in unique and practical ways through time-honoured First Nations Medicine Wheel teachings. Our programmes bring people from different cultural, social and economic backgrounds together in a spirit of Hanta Ho (Clearing the Way). Our presentations are informative, inspiring, relaxing and often hilarious.
WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO
The beauty and wisdom of Medicine Wheel knowledge when combined with vocals and drum rhythms, bridges the cultural divide in positive ways; they raise our awareness of right action through Hope, Intelligence and thoughtful contemplation, fuelled by Inspiration and Imagination.
Choosing to live honourably in the world by making intelligent choices, counteracts racism with teamwork, jealousy with self-respect, general bias with acceptance, greed with fulfillment. Not only does the Medicine Wheel comfort us by making sense of the world, but it challenges us to do better. I've developed a unique approach based on my Indigenous Medicine Wheel knowledge and many years as a senior manager in a multi-cultural organization.
My interactive approach empowers all participants to build for themselves a strong sense of self-confidence and fearlessness by broadening personal goals. The Medicine Wheel is a tangible mechanism upon which the power of clear, positive communication among individuals, families, business associates, communities and nations can be focused. It is an opportunity for people to be connected in a positive, circular change of understanding.
Authentic and transparent interpersonal communication -- Knowing the difference between information and communication -- Building intercultural understanding -- Recognizing non-verbal signals -- Courageous communication -- Creating solid teamwork -- Promoting personal leadership -- Focusing on ideas and not just facts increases possibilities and open dialogue -- Alleviating stress -- Concentration -- Good Listening -- Environment (workplace, home) -- Perception -- Adapting to change -- Conflict resolution -- Enhance performance.
COMMENTS FROM THUNDERBIRD
The Covenant and Power of the Matriarchy Lies in Our Humanity & Resonant Connection to Mother Earth.
I carry the name Thunderbird for a reason (yes, it really is my last name). In my world, Thunderbird is a great communicator and protector, unafraid to bring changes to the world and to speak the truth when something needs to be said.
It took years for me to grow into the responsibility and sheer enormity of the many teachings that my name embodies. I have walked through many fires, and even 'died' a few times in my relatively long life. I found the courage to step away from the comfort of my 'western' job and return to my Indigenous roots. I was boosted along the way by six very persistent, female Ancestors and one male guardian. Seven souls that embraced the seven sacred directions, and who have been me since the beginning.
It was time, they said, to tell the truth about my people from a Native perspective. The Tsimshian call it Ama't'ilgoolsk, Ama'diduuls, or "Good thoughts, Good life". I also embraced the Lakhota spirit of Hanta Ho, Clearing the Way, and in so doing, my life's work is dedicated to helping heal fractured people, families, communities and nations.
To aid me in my quest, I created a company that celebrates the world's people through a synchronicity of Inspirit Speeches, Medicine Wheel knowledge, Meditations, Arts, Education and Dynamic Entertainment. I am fortunate to have two wonderful sisters, one by heart, Sandy Horne, my performance partner of fourteen years, and one by blood, Kate Dickson, who jumped on board with me, no questions asked. We laugh, we cry, we inspire, we imagine, we create and we believe.
Teya Peya means "Women Who Run With The North Wind." That is us. Thunderbird brings the wind that brings changes, we embrace all of them, they make us stronger and wiser for the experiences, and, in turn, we share it all with you.
Spiritual and emotional wellness crosses ALL cultural, social and professional boundaries. The responsibility of ALL humanity is to live lives of deep meaning, seeking always to be mindful and in service to others through a synchronization of energy, unity and common purpose.
Remember, Courage/Mindfulness + Hope + "Heart Speak" + Accountability = Physical, Spiritual, Emotional and Mental Resilience! It is the way of the Medicine Wheel and written in the stars.
SHANNON THUNDERBIRD, M.A., IS:
--An internationally celebrated First Nations Speaker, Artist/Educator. A captivating post-secondary lecturer.
-Artistic Director of Teya Peya Productions.
--Accomplished Speaker and Workshop Facilitator. From elementary schools to universities and corporations, she challenges people to connect the power of the human spirit with the issues in today's high tech & shattered world. "She is a voice of clarity in a cluttered world."
--Principal Performer and Artistic Director of all Teya Peya productions.
--Professional Singer, Songwriter, Recording Artist.
--Playwright, Published Author.
--First Nations Elder.
--Former Senior Director of a large, unionized, culturally-diverse post-secondary workforce.
--A staunch supporter of Women's Leadership roles (Business, Social and Political Forums).
--Extensive experience working with children, youth, at risk and incarcerated youth.
--Masters and Honours Degrees in Political Science, Fine Arts and Humanities.
--Main areas of interest: Medicine Wheel Indigenous Culture/Spirituality, Women, Leadership, Youth, Justice & Indigenous Rights, History, Research, Music, Theatre and Drums, Drums dDums.
--These aren't her words. "She's absolutely hilarious, we mean rolling in the aisles, hysterical. No audience member is safe when she's in the house!"
SANDY HORNE, IS:
--Principal performer and Thunderbird's Creative Performance partner.
--Associate Workshop Facilitator and Road/Touring Manager.
--Recording Artist, Songwriter.
--Co-producer of all Teya Peya's recordings.
--First rate musician and one of Canada's premier female bass players.
--Founding member of the iconic Canadian band, Spoons.
--Gold records and Juno nomination to the Spoons' credit.
--A staunch supporter of Women's leadership roles (business, social and political forums).
--Proudly "Second" nations.
--Her gentle humour balances Thunderbird.
--Named "Woman of the Year" for the City of Guelph, ON.
--Compelling Speaker/Educator, Writer (Native Studies, Justice issues, World Religions, Dramatic Arts, Philosophy).
--Retired Secondary School Teacher (twenty-seven years, teaching Native Studies, Dramatic Arts, English, World Religions and more).
--Teya Peya's Life Coach/Guidance Counsellor/Tutor for Youth.
--Chief Editor of Thunderbird's books.
--Theatrical Director for most of Teya Peya's major productions.
--A staunch supporter of Women's Leadership roles in (Business, Social and Political forums).
--Main areas of interest: Indigenous Rights, Justice, Law and Politics, Women.
--Occasionally performs with Thunderbird and Horne.
--Degrees in Humanities and Philosophy.
--Not her words: "She's really funny - we mean REALLY funny. She's Tsimshian, she has to be."
--Winner of an award for being a super parent/volunteer, City of Mississauga, ON
Teya Peya emphasizes that
'inspirit' team building is essential in helping
organizations develop their workforces and ensure they recognize the
strengths of the people they work with on a day-to-day basis.
We are busy, because what we do strikes a positive, connective cord in the minds, hearts, bodies and spirits of those who seek us out. We work hard to keep our presentations uplifting and entertaining.
are ideal for absolutely everyone in any business, educational and
SOME NICE THINGS HAVE BEEN SAID
"Thank you so much for the performance at our Canadian Symposium for Arts and Learning. The audience was just wowed by your performance, and we so appreciate it.!"
(S. Robertson, Canadian Network for Arts and Learning)
"Thank you for an outstanding luncheon keynote presentation at the Human Resources Conference....You engaged the hearts and minds of our delegates and opened them to embracing change and connectedness on a meaningful level."
(E. Lengyel, Conference Board of Canada)
"Shannon's workshop gave employees a sense of value and safety. Her years of experience have given her profound insight into the world of work and the human coping factor (or lack therefore) in a fast-paced world. Using her traditional teachings and extraordinary communication skills, she offered very inspiring messages and in such a relevant and entertaining way!"
(B.J.L., Motorola, Canada)
"Thank you for agreeing to be a speaker at Wilfrid Laurier's first Aboriginal Awareness Conference. Your voice is strong and reached many. Your participation and support meant so much."
(S. Rose, Wilfrid Laurier University, ON)
"I would like to extend our appreciation and thanks for your time as our "in-residency" Elder. Your wonderful teachings, one-on-one appointments, were so meaningful, and your time and effort was greatly appreciated."
(D.S. Dodem Kanonhsa', Department of Indian and Northern Affairs)
"Your sense of the spiritual and regard for our Ancestors was particularly moving. The young people I walked with following your presentation were very appreciative. They will benefit much from your messages as they go on to further life experiences."
(G. Hammond, Northwest Network for Youth, Seattle WA)
kept the audience mesmerized with her stories and the emotional
power of her singing voice. It was an enthralling evening."
(K. Makon, Aboriginal Education Summer Academy, Ontario Teacher's Federation)
SOME PREVIOUS EVENTS
--“Medicine Wheel & the Art of Storytelling”, Fanshawe College Annual Conference, London, ON
--“Sweet Thunder Medicine Wheel" - Faculty, Northern College, Timmins, ON, Staff/Management, Lambton College, Sarnia, ON, Brock University students and employees; Motorola Canada Workshop for employees; Northwest Network for Youth Conference, Seattle, WA, Canada Employment & Immigration Union of Ontario Regional Conference, Niagara Fall, ON, Dodem Kanon'sha, Indian and Northern Affairs, Toronto, ON
--"From Kalavala to Rap", Annual Conference of Theatre Arts, Sunne Sweden
--"Medicine Wheel Drumming": Resorts Ontario Annual Conference
--"Medicine Wheel: Introduction to North America's Indigenous People", CODE Conference (Ontario Drama Educators), Toronto, ON
--“In Honour of Women”, Delta Kappa Gamma Conference, Oakville, ON
Wisdom of the Ages Teachings and Keynote Speeches
--Conference Board of Canada.
--"Seven Steps to the Colonization of First Nations People", Canada Employment/Immigration Union of Ontario Conference, Niagara Falls, ON.
--"Walking the Good Red Road in an Alabaster World", Accountability, Governance-Empowered nations, Aboriginal Employees Network Conference, Regina, SK.
--"Medicine Wheel and Cultural Bridging", University of Windsor, ON, Wilfrid Laurier University.
--Equity Network Conference, University of Windsor, ON.
Academic Workshops and Lectures
--"Seven Steps to the Colonization of North America's First Nation's People", Ryerson university (Sociology).
--"Is it Justice or is it Law?" Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa, ON, Police Foundations, Durham, Seneca Colleges.
--"Race and Diversity in Higher Education; Finding Strength in Difference." 2008 National CAPDHHE-QUEEEN Conference, Hosted by: Carleton University, Ottawa.
--"From "Houses to Monsters": The Naming Practices of the Coast Tsimshian First Nation", 23rd Annual Congress of Onomastic Sciences, York University.
--"Medicine Wheel: Introduction to North America's Indigenous People", University of Marburg, Germany, York University, Brock University, Ontario Elementary Teacher's Federation; Upper Thames Elementary Teacher's Board of Education.