Native Lights is a weekly, half-hour radio program hosted by Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe members and siblings, Leah Lemm and Cole Premo. Native Lights is a space for people in Native communities around Mni Sota Mkoce — a.k.a. Minnesota — to tell their stories about finding their gifts and sharing them with the community.
Native Lights – Michael Lyons’ Gift for teaching Ojibwe Language with Puppets, Cartoons, and Song
On today’s show, we talk with Anishinaabe author and artist, Michael Lyons, who is the creator of “Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo,” a daily live-streamed, “puppet podcast” on YouTube. The program explores Ojibwe language and culture, through skits, music, and conversations. This show also airs on KAXE/KBXE community radio in Northern Minnesota.
Michael Lyons has written and illustrated many publications, including comic books and several children’s books in Ojibwe including: “Dog and Ma’iingan”, “Boozhoo Ajidamoo” and “Little Cutie: A Teddy Bear’s Vision Quest.”
Michael Lyons, along with his puppets Nanaboozhoo and Natasha, creates shows that are funny and whimsical, but the show and its characters also contend with topics that are sad and even tragic. We asked Michael about the heartfelt way he recently addressed the news of the remains of 215 children recently found at the Kamloops Boarding School in British Columbia.
Chi Miigwech Michael Lyons for sharing your passion for puppets, songs, humor, and heartfelt conversations.
Here’s a link to the “Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo” show on the recent events in Canada and the residential school on YouTube:
Here’s a link to the “Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo” radio show on KAXE/KBXE radio: https://www.kaxe.org/term/boozhoo-nana-boozhoo#stream/0
Boarding School survivors’ resources mentioned in the show
Subscribe to Native Lights wherever you get your podcasts
More from Native Lights
- Leah and Cole: Sharing Our Gifts and PurposeOn today’s show, we turn the microphone on each other! No guest today… instead, we ask each other some questions about our own purpose and passions, starting with music.
- Christina Wood’s Gift for Busting Bias Through ArtOn today’s show, we talk with Christina Woods (Bois Forte Tribal Nation) who is the first Anishinaabikwe to be the Executive Director of the Duluth Art Institute. Christina is also currently performing in the play The UnPlugging presented by New Native Theatre in Minneapolis.
- Cece Benimon’s Gift for Connecting Kids with Culture & ConservationOn today’s show, we talk with Cece Benimon (Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa) who is the family liaison for Anishinaabe Academy, a Minneapolis school with a Native-centered curriculum. Cece shares some of the different ways the school is revitalizing and Indigenizing curriculum.
- Amber Buckanaga’s Gift for Art and Fashion DesignOn today’s show, we have a fun conversation with Amber Buckanaga (Leech Lake Band) who is an artist, fashion designer, and mother. Amber left her career in education, to follow her artistic dreams, which led to sewing, then designing fashions, and eventually the runways of NYC’s fashion week!
- How Visionaries Deb Foster and Mike Laverdure Create Healing SpacesWe meet Deb Foster (Ojibwe), the Executive Director of Ain Dah Yung, and Mike Laverdure (Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians in North Dakota), a partner with DSGW Architects. Deb Foster and Mike Laverdure both played leading roles in the creation of Mino Oski Ain Dah Yung, a beautiful new apartment building in St. Paul, where formerly homeless Native young adults can live, reconnect to culture, and get job skills. Mino Oski Ain Dah Yung opened in November of 2019.