Haida stories tell of a time when the animals were people like us: the people of the air, the people of the water, the four-legged people. Humans were simply the two-legged people. The others were our brothers and sisters. They taught us how to live and be true haada-laas (good people). We survived because of their teachings.

My stories stretch from before the beginning of time to the present day. I take my audience on this journey from the past to the present. It is a safe journey, and usually a fun one. When I perform I use humour as much as possible, with the reminder that laughter is healing. Tears are also healing, and some stories evoke these as well. Both are good.

Depending on the occasion, I perform stories about Raven creating our world; stealing the light; getting salmon; bringing fire; meeting Salmon Woman; discovering other worlds; creating the first people; having a feast. I have several stories on other topics ranging from powerful women; a fisherman and a whale...there are too many to list.

I use my rattle, drum, and my songs to enhance my stories. I usually alternate by telling a story, then singing a song.

I often perform wearing my traditional Haida button robe and cedar hat. As I perform I teach some Haida words to my audience and share some of the history and culture of my people.

Roberta Storytelling