IQALUIT, NUNAVUT (Canada) – There’s nothing like children’s television programming for getting cute songs stuck in your head. Now, parents in Canada can go around singing those songs in the Inuktitut language. On May 12, Anaana’s Tent premiered on APTN (Aboriginal Peoples Television Network). The program, which is entirely in the Inuktitut language, is designed for preschool-aged children. An English version of the show, which will feature Inuktitut language lessons, will air in the fall.
Anaana’s Tent begins with host Rita Claire (Rita Claire Mike-Murphy) setting up camp in her mother’s (anaana’s) tent. While her mother is out, she and her husky, Qimmiq (performed by Inuit puppeteer Ippiksaut Friesen) and a cast of friends sing songs, play games, read stories, and learn about Inuit values of kindness, friendship, patience and environmental stewardship.
When she’s not performing on Anaana’s Tent, Mike-Murphy performs music as Riit. She released a self-titled EP last year through Aakuluk Music. Labelmates The Jerry Cans are among the Inuit musicians who make guest appearances on Anaana’s Tent. She is also joined on the show by narrator Celina Kalluk, who interacts with animated characters and also appears as a musical guest.
The show is produced by Taqqut Productions, an Inuit-owned film production company located in Iqaluit, Nunavut.
“I am so excited to have this series aired in Inuktitut for Inuit children to watch,” said Roselynn Akulukjuk, series writer, and director. “It’s so important for children to watch TV in our language and be ready for school already knowing a basic level of Inuktitut.”
The Anaana’s Tent website includes way more than information about the show: It also has games, songs, stories, and videos for children, and educational resources for parents. Like the show itself, the website is in both Inuktitut and English. You can also follow the show on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.