Logo Logo

Our Vision

The Dakhká Khwáan Dancers, are a National Award winning Inland Tlingit dance group based out of Whitehorse, Yukon Territory. They focus on reclaiming their languages and traditional values through their inherent art form of singing, drumming, dancing, and storytelling. The Dakhká Khwaán Dancers strive to present their performance with the outmost respect to cultural protocol and with the highest form of artistic integrity. Since forming in the community of Carcross in 2007, they have grown from 6 to 30 members and with the addition of a children’s group, the Dakhká Khwaán Jrs.

Dakhká Khwáan means Inland People/Nation, a name given to them by the late Dakla’weidi elder, Mrs. Eliza Bosely.  They are members of the Dakla’weidi, Yan Yedi, Ganaxteidi, Deisheetaan, Ishkihittaan, Kookhittaan,  Lukaax.ádi and Wolf Clans.  The group is led by Marilyn Jensen, who has danced since she was 2 years old in the group her Mother started in the 1970s, The Skookum Jim/Keish Tlingit Dancers. In addition, they are advised and guided by their loving group Elders and through the knowledge passed on from their Ancestors.  Members of the group are the decendents of renowned Yukon Indigenous elders: Peter and Agnes Johns, Angela Sidney, Dora Wedge, Johnny Johns, Patsy Henderson, Louise Dickson, Tommy Smarch, and numerous others. We all share a passion for expressing our identity through the arts and absolutely love to sing, drum, learn language, make regalia and dance.

Together, we have danced across Canada, the US, New Zealand, Taiwan, the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and the Pam Am Games in 2015. The group received the 2014 National Aboriginal Cultural-Tourism Award.

What We Do

We are a performance troupe highlighting Indigenous dance, song, drumming, storytelling and dance workshops in the Inland Tlingit style. We have also collaborated with Yukon Artist DJ Dash and produced original compositions by members of the group into techno beats. We have produced an entire show around this new, uplifting and high energy beats, called Deconstruct/Reconstruct, also the name of our first Album, being officially released summer 2017!

We have danced in numerous Festivals across the land, in cultural events, in private Yukon based conferences, all with the purpose to share our culture and story as proud Yukon Indigenous peoples.

We are committed to participating in cultural and revitalization events in our communities to support the reclamation of our own ceremonies and ways. We thank our family, friends and community for all of the love and support and encouragement over the years that have helped us become who we are today; proud Indigenous dancers sharing our story and our love to all whom care to witness.

National Award Recipients

Aboriginal Cultural Tourism Heritage Award 2014

Significant Performances

Some of our performance highlights and significant achievements include:

Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, BC Place, Aboriginal Pavilion

We Yah Hani Nah Northwest Coast Dance Festival, Vancouver, BC, 2008, 2009, 2010

Talking Stick Festival, Vancouver, BC, 2010

Blue Feather Music Festival, Whitehorse, Yukon, 2008, 2012

Celebration, Juneau, Alaska, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016

Winterlude, Ottawa, Ontario, 2009, 2017

APTN Aboriginal Day Live, Live Television Performance Whitehorse, Yukon, 2009

Haa Kustee yea Inland Tlingit Celebration, Teslin, Yukon, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015

Moosehide Gathering, Dawson City, Yukon, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016

Te Matatini Maori Dance Festival, Gisbourne, New Zealand, 2011

Coastal First Nations Dance Festival, Vancouver BC, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017

Adäka Cultural Festival, Whitehorse, Yukon, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

Quayana, Alaska Federation of Natives, Anchorage, Alaska, 2011

Hobiyee, Ts’amiks Edition (The Nisga’a New Year), Vancouver, BC, 2012, 2015

International Polar Year 2012, Montreal, Quebec

Spirit of the Drums, Whitehorse, 2012

Northern Scene, Ottawa Ontario, 2013

Words of Our Ancestors, Whitehorse, 2013

Assembly of First Nations Annual General Meeting Opening and Cultural Gala, Whitehorse, 2013

Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian and Natural History Museum, Washington DC, 2013

Indigenous Bash, University of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, Arizona, 2013

Global Indigenous Peoples Performing Arts Festival, Taiwan, 2014

Skookum Jim Native Folklore Show, Whitehorse, Yukon 2015

Da Ku Nan Ts’ani Dhat Dance Festival, Haines Junction, 2015

Folk on the Rocks, Yellowknife, NWT, 2015

Pan Am Games, Toronto Ontario, 2015

Calgary Children’s Festival, Calgary Alberta 2016

Premiers Conference Gala Night, Whithorse 2016

Private Performance for The Royal Visit, Prince William and Princess Kate, Carcross, Yukon 2016

Deconstruct/Reconstruct featuring DJ Dash remixed Show, Whitehorse, Yukon, 2017

is now playing