Concerts from the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2020 at 12:00 PM

Conversation with PIQSIQ: Tiffany Kuliktana Ayalik & Kayley Inuksuk Mackay


With a style perpetually galvanized by darkness and haunting northern beauty, sisters, Tiffany Kuliktana Ayalik and Kayley Inuksuk Mackay, come together to create Inuit style throat singing duo, PIQSIQ. Performing ancient traditional songs and eerie new compositions, they endeavor to leave their listeners enthralled with the infinity of possible answers to the question “what is the meaning of life.” 
With roots in Nunavut, the two grew up in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. After years of forging hard won skill, they developed their own form blended with haunting melodies and otherworldly sounds. Approaching adulthood, they realized throat singing was not only a musical expression, but a radical, political act of cultural revitalization.

A piqsiq is a storm where the winds blow in a specific way, making it look like the snow is falling back up towards the sky. Being of blended backgrounds, Kayley and Tiffany have had to navigate strange cultural waters and have learned to embrace that journey. As PIQSIQ, they perform improvisational looping live, creating a dynamic audience experience that changes with every show. The sisters incorporate that haunting, ethereal feel into their album recordings and continue to perform both nationally and internationally.

The Embassy of Canada is proud to be a partner with the Library of Congress in supporting an Inuit concert performed by PIQSIQ. The ancient traditional songs of PIQSIQ are a great contribution to the Canadian culture and the Embassy of Canada hopes that you will enjoy this performance offered to an American  audience.

A free noon concert series presented by the American Folklife Center and the Music Division of the Library of Congress. Due to the COVID 19 pandemic, the 2020 concerts will stream on the American Folklife Center’s Facebook page, Wednesdays from June 24-September 30. Artists will be present in the chat area to say hello and answer questions during the concert and for a few minutes after it ends. Video will also be posted online here and on the Library of Congress YouTube channel. NO TICKETS REQUIRED.