Blackfeet Class Play Honored at Conference

Aug 15th, 2004 | By | Category: 16-1: Sovereignty in Indian Country, Tribal College News

The theater class from Blackfeet Community College (BCC) won top honors for its play, “The Trial of Major Baker,” at the American Indian Higher Education Consortium(AIHEC) conference in Billings in March. Students acted, directed, designed sets, and developed costumes.

Written by student James Evans, the play recounts the events begun on a frigid January morning in 1870 when Major Baker (played by English Instructor Woody Kipp) and the soldiers he commanded massacred over 200 Blackfeet elders, women, and children.

Even though one of the scouts told Baker he was attacking the wrong camp, Baker ordered the slaughter to proceed anyway. Baker was never held accountable for killing innocents belonging to a band, which had signed a peace agreement. In the play, however, Baker finally stands trial to answer for his crimes against the Blackfeet.

The class has performed the play in Browning, MT, the home of the tribal college, several times as part of fundraisers. The theater class is one of many new courses BCC offers in its expanded liberal arts curriculum. Students can now choose courses on writing poetry and fiction, music theory and appreciation, and drama and film.

For more information, contact Colleen O’Brien (406) 338-5411.

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