Drum Dance Master Anda Kuiste

The main surviving Greenlandic musical tradition is the Drum Dance, a competition during which two musicians come to the town’s “qaggi,” which a snow-house built to host community events, and chant lighthearted songs while each beating a frame drum (made of an oval frame with a bear bladder stretched over the top as the drum head), competing to see who can get the most laughs from the audience. One of the best known Greenlandic drum dancers is Anda Kuitse. Watch him perform a drum dance, the story of which a YouTube commenter summarizes in the following way: “a raven and a goose whom fall in love one summer. When autumn comes and the goose must fly south over the big ocean the raven follows its loved one. But the raven cannot swim nor flote. So when the goose landed in the ocean to rest the raven also landed. But for each time the goose landed in the ocean the raven sinks deeper (the drumdancer shows with his drumstick how deep the water reaches the raven each time they land in the ocean) and finally the raven drowns into the deep for its love.”