Derrick Suwaima Davis is a Native Arizonan,
from the Hopi and Choctaw Nations. Suwaima, who began
participating in Pow Wows at the age of 3, is a Five
World Champion Hoop Dancer and Champion Fancy Dancer.
In addition to dancing competitively,
Suwaima also has many other interests. He serves as
the choreographer for, and performs in, the annual Native
Song & Dance production at the Scottsdale Center
for the Arts. Suwaima also functions as Artistic Director
for the Native Trails Tour and Scottsdale Festivals.
For 7 years, he was a member of the
pop/rock group “Clan/destine”. Furthermore,
Suwaima has worked with The Phoenix Symphony and Canyon
Records. In 2002, he was Head Man Dancer at the Inaugural
Pow Wow at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American
Indian on the Mall in Washington, DC.
Derrick Suwaima Davis, Hopi/Choctaw
Four Time World Champion Hoop Dancer Ken Ross Photography
Suwaima has appeared as a model in
Marie Clare and his image has been used on everything
from billboards, to Heard Museum and Arizona Office
of Tourism ads, to a US Postal Service campaign.
Auspicious publications Suwaima has
been featured in include Smithsonian (cover), Native Peoples (cover), Phoenix Home &
Garden (as Master Dancer of the Southwest), and Cosmopolitan (man of the month).
Suwaima regularly performs in theatrical
productions, school programs, concerts, and other special
Traditions Dance Troupe
Derrick Suwaima Davis, Lisa Little Iron, Eldred Matt, Perry Thompson
Members of Living Traditions Dance Troupe Lee Hyeoma Photography
The Living Traditions Dance Troupe
is comprised of various championship artists, each bringing
his/her own cultural values and ideals, and expressing
them through dance movements. The Group involves a variety
of dancers, including but not limited to representatives
from the following tribes: Hopi, Dine', Lakota, Seminole,
Creek, Hidatsa, Apache and Choctaw.
They begin the performance with a brief
explanation of how song and dance is utilized to celebrate
identity. They explain that each culture is unique,
yet has a gift and a lesson to offer the others. They
come together in song and dance to honor the First Nations
way, all people, and the lives which we all carry. The
Dancers impart and encourage a positive message, and
pave the way for future generations who will follow.
The dances have evolved from ceremonial
songs, dances, and/or historical events and may include
The Living Traditions Dance Troupe seeks to entertain
and share the culture of First Nations people through
their programs ranging from solo dance performances
to professionally choreographed, lavish productions.