What We Do
Since its inception in 1998, Tribe of One has developed a reputation for creating technically innovative, highly adaptable, cross-cultural entertainment that engages audiences through an amazing blend of Sound, Physical Movement & Dance, Performance Painting and Slam Poetry.
Sound - Rik Leaf & Marie-Josee Dandeneau, play over a dozen instruments between them to create the thunderous tribal sound. A fusion of instruments from indigenous cultures around the world layers First Nations pow-wow & hand drums with didgeridoo and ocarinas over Rik’s percussive slide/acoustic guitar and MJ’s soulful fretless/upright bass.
Physical Movement and Dance - Anishinabe First Nations dancer and choreographer, Buffy Handel, sets emotions in motion through a combination of traditional and modern dance styles, regalia and costumes, fusing hoop, jingle and fancy shawl choreography with salsa, samba and Brazilian capoeira.
Performance Painting – Audiences are swept up into the creation process as award winning painter and performance artist, Tina Newlove, creates stunning visual images, as an empty canvas is infused with the swirl of creative energy on and off the stage.
Storytelling – A master storyteller, Rik’s socially conscious lyrics, slam poetry, instrumental soundscapes and spontaneous narratives transport audiences through the ancient art of storytelling to a world of imagination and wonder.
Tribe of One is a collective of world-class performers and producers who fuse the rich heritage of old world cultures with modern artistic expression. With deep mutual respect and a sense of adventure, Tribe of One embraces artists from a variety of disciplines and cultures to create wildly unique, one-of-a-kind performances.
Core Artists of our Creative Process
Rik Leaf – Founder/Creative Director, 1998 - Present - Recording Artist/Producer/Slam Poet, Rik has released numerous CDs, hosted the Artist Next Door TV show, he tours internationally as a solo artist and with Tribe of One. Through his artistic activism he has worked with the UN and the Department of Foreign Affairs.
Marie-Josee Dandeneau – Musical Director, 2005 – Present - French Canadian, multi-instrumental musician from St. Boniface, Winnipeg, Manitoba, MJ specializes in double bass and electric fretless bass, recording and performing internationally with artists from around the world.
Tina Newlove - Principle Visual Artist, 1998 - Present - Graduating with distinction from McMaster University, Tina's paintings have been accepted into over seventy juried exhibitions, receiving numerous awards including an Award of Merit from the Society of Canadian Artists in 2010. She's been with Tribe from the beginning.
Buffy Handel - Principle Dancer, 2008 - Present - Originally from a remote community in northern Manitoba, Buffy has become one of Canada's premier First Nations dancers and choreographers, touring internationally as a presenter and performer. Buffy is the founder of the Aboriginal School of Dance in Winnipeg, Manitoba.