Rob AptakerArt Form(s):
I care deeply about representing Native American People and cultures with respect and accuracy. As a non-Native who has been privileged to learn some of the stories, songs and traditional ways of North America's indigenous people, I strive to serve as a bridge between the visible world of modern America and the vibrant but often overlooked reality of Red World People. If there is artistry in my presentations and performances, it is not in imitation; rather, it is in finding the words, sounds, and gestures to help audiences connect with what is universal in the unique and particular story I am sharing. To make history and culture come to life for school children, I call on the power of stories to awaken their imaginations.
For over forty years, Rob Aptaker has visited Native American people from many tribal nations. He has learned stories, tribal traditions, and songs, and he has taken part in ceremonies and celebrations. Rob is an avid student of Native American oral histories and of Native American historical and anthropological records.
When Rob Aptaker meets with students to share about pre-colonial native life in what is now America, he brings a respectful and balanced perspective that helps children understand Native People and their history. Rob has a Master’s degree in Education and has given hundreds of presentations in schools, libraries, and museums. His talent for combining humor, audience participation, and a well-paced “show and demonstrate” style make his presentations lively and engaging.