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The First Voices International Arts Festival 

Each year for the past five, the First Voices Project has brought Aboriginal youth from Canada, Botswana, the Philippines, Guatemala, Chile and Honduras together for 10 days to share their stories and connect through art. This Saturday, both new participants and alumni are gathering for their last event---and sharing it with the community. "This year, because it's everybody from all of the years who've come back, we wanted to do something extra special," says Carolyn Whiteway, program manager for the Atlantic Council for International Cooperation, which is behind the Project. That something is a full day of art workshops---open to any youth, from 14 to 20 years---with an end-of-day performance for the public in the evening. Asked what we'll see Saturday night, she begins a list: "wonderful stories, amazing indigenous dance, Inuit drum dancing, throat singing," and then pauses. "The voices that the participants themselves, the stories and the voices they have---that's going to be the show."

Day-long youth workshops take place at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia; go to firstvoicesproject.ca to register, or drop in on Saturday. Head to the day's end public performance at the McNally Theatre at Saint Mary's University, 7pm.

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