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Kevin Locke

Hunkpapa Lakota/Anishinaabe
(b. 1954)
Kevin Locke

Meaning "The First to Arise", Kevin Locke is known throughout the world as a visionary Hoop Dancer, the preeminent player of the indigenous Northern Plains flute, a traditional storyteller, cultural ambassador, recording artist and educator.

While his early instructions were received from his immediate family and community, Kevin has learned many lessons in global citizenship and how we can draw from our individual heritage to create a vibrant, evolving global civilization which embraces and celebrates our collective heritage.

Kevin Locke's concerts and presentations at performing arts centers, festivals, schools, universities, conferences, state and national parks, monuments and historic sites, powwows and reservations number in the hundreds, annually. Approximately eighty percent of his presentations are shared with children. He is a dance and musical hero and role model for youth around the world. His special joy is working with children on reservations to ensure the survival and growth of indigenous culture.

Kevin Locke is acknowledged as the pivotal force in the now-powerful revival of the indigenous flute tradition, which teetered on the brink of extinction just twenty years ago. In 1990, Kevin was awarded a National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The award recognized him as a "Master Traditional Artist who has contributed to the shaping of our artistic traditions and to preserving the cultural diversity of the United States."

As a folk artist, he is often characterized as being from a tribal-specific background only. Kevin draws from deep wellsprings of knowledge, distilled and refined over many generations until yielding a profound sense of the universality of the human spirit and its inclination toward harmony, balance, beauty, peace, and the sacred through movement and dance, sound and music. It is universal spirit that Kevin strives to convey through his stories, music, humor, dances and workshops.

"All of the people have the same impulses, spirit and goals," reflects Kevin. "Through my music and dance, I want to create a positive awareness of the Oneness of humanity."


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