News Round Up From September 2010

Frybread Queen Crew Montana 2010

Frybread Happens! L-R: Jane Lind, Arigon Starr, Tiffany Meiwald, Deb Voss, Lily Gladstone

Who’s a Busy Diva? Arigon!

She’s criss-crossed the country to attend the National Federation of Community Broadcaster’s Convention in Minneapolis; to Albuquerque for her friend Janet Holmberg and Shawn Berman’s wedding; to San Diego for the annual Comic Con; up to Warm Springs, Oregon to be part of the annual Huckleberry Harvest Festival — and now she’s in Missoula, Montana.

Why Missoula?

She’s been cast in the new play from Carolyn Dunn called “The Frybread Queen.”

Recently, she sat down for an interview with journalist Jodi Rave, who hosts the “Tribal Scene” radio show on KBGA-FM. Their interview will air on Friday, September 10 at 8:00am (Mountain Time). Jodi also writes the popular blog “Buffalo’s Fire.” You can listen online at KBGA-FM’s website if you’re not in the Missoula area.

“The Frybread Queen” is the story of four Native women who deal with a death in the family. The play stars Jane Lind, Lily Gladstone and Tiffany Meiwald. The director is Jere Hodgin and the show is a co-production of Montana Rep, the University of Montana and Native Voices at the Autry.

Frybread Queen PosterThe show will have a gala preview and reception on Thursday, September 16th and open to the public on Friday, September 17th. The show runs as follows:

Friday , September 17 & Saturday, September 18 at 7:30pm

Saturday, September 18 and Sunday, September 19 at 2:00pm

Thursday, September 23, Friday, September 24 and Saturday, September 25 at 7:30pm

Saturday, September 25 and Sunday, September 26 at 2:00pm.

Tickets are available at the University of Montana’s PAR- TV building box office and online at their website.

Arigon Starr fans — heads up! There is a BRAND NEW Arigon track in the play. It’s a take on an old Patsy Cline number that Arigon composed and recorded especially for “The Frybread Queen.” It’s called “You’re My Indian Boy” and we’re not kidding when we say it’s very….haunting!

MAY 4, 2010

If you’re a regular “Native America Calling” listener, you might have been tuned into today’s live “Current Events” broadcast and heard our Diva talking about her latest project. It’s a brand new play called “Indian Life.”

“I’ve spent the past ten months researching and writing this piece,” smiled Arigon. “Definitely another labor of love and a theater shout-out to my friends in radio. The play is about a local radio show and the impact the show has on the Native American community. However, the play is set in 1947 — a time when most folks were trying to get back to normal after World War II and a time when Native Americans were nowhere to be found on the airwaves, except in cheesy ‘Tonto’ portrayals.”

You can be part of the fun and success of “Indian Life” by attending the staged reading in Oklahoma City. Here’s the information and we hope to see a bunch of you there!

MAY 25-27, 2010

The CitySpace Theater at the Civic Center Music Hall
201 Walker Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK 73102

Tuesday, May 25 at 7:30pm — “War Paint” by Bret Jones

Wednesday, May 26 at 7:30pm — “Dirty Laundry” by Ranell Collins

Thursday, May 27 at 7:30pm — “Indian Life” by Arigon Starr

Each of the plays will be a staged reading, meaning there will be few production values (lights, sound effects) and the actors will be reading from the scripts in their hands. All readings are FREE and the play that gets the best audience response will be fully produced next year.

For more information, contact the Oklahoma City Theater Company, Artistic Director Rick Nelson at (405) 290-8632. Their website:

Here’s a brief synopsis of Arigon’s play, “INDIAN LIFE” — During a hot summer day in August 1947, the weekly broadcast of “Indian Life,” a two-hour radio program featuring news and traditional music from the Native American Indian community is scheduled to go on without a hitch until the arrival of a big city journalist, the femme-fatale station owner and a shady Native evangelist and his hillbilly bride. Further complicating the matter are an embittered Native veteran who haunts the station and a young Native nurse recently returned from duty. As their machinations grind the program to a halt, the station owner announces that “Indian Life” is cancelled. Longtime host Gene Okemah has to re-evaluate his commitment to program and whether he still has a place or status in the Indian community. With the help of his volunteer Native radio crew, Gene finds his hard work behind the microphone has had more impact than anyone ever imagined.

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