Two Moccasins, Two Worlds
“You have two moccasins on your feet, walk in both worlds, Grandson. Learn what they learn, always remember where home is though.” A highly personal keynote, Ryan shares his story of failure & triumph and charts his path from a kid that grew up “in the bush” to becoming the first Indigenous comedian to ever a record a full mainstream comedy special with CBC TV. At times, heartbreaking, at times hilarious, Ryan’s honest take on the intergenerational effects of residential school on him and his family, his (re)connection to culture & ceremony and the balance it takes to live in today’s contemporary context is all covered in the this forward-looking & challenging keynote presentation.
iPhones, Bush Tea & Dibajimowinan
Dibajimowinan (deh-bazh-im-oh-we-non) is the word for “storytelling” in the Ojibway language. In this keynote, Ryan explores how Indigenous storytelling is the key to moving reconciliation forward in Canada. The only way Canada (as a country) and Canadians can begin to wrestle with reconciliation is to hear, understand & accept the stories and experiences of Indigenous Peoples. Canada must come to grips with its last 150 years as a country. In this presentation, Ryan delivers a poignant reflection on why storytelling, community, and the internet are integral to moving forward under the project of reconciliation.
Red Man Laughing – Reflections on Reconciliation
This multimedia keynote shares the discoveries, stories and challenges of Ryan’s groundbreaking 5th season of his podcast Red Man Laughing. Ryan brings audiences behind the scenes and into the world of the show in a critical, with an in-depth and challenging analysis of the reconciliation movement in Canada today. The shows 5th season has set the bar high in terms of ways independent or mainstream media can/should respond to the calls for reconciliation.
Mino-Bimadiziwin (mee-no bim-ah-dizz-ee-win) translates to, “the good life,” in the Ojibway language. This powerful presentation addresses Ryan’s philosophy on how we may approach the good life we all seek – through balance within ourselves, our families, our communities and our Nations. He deconstructs how we can apply indigenous natural law concepts to our own lives & communities to return back to health & happiness.
Film Screening & Discussion | Colonization Road
This 90 minute presentation starts off with a screening of the critically acclaimed documentary, Colonization Road and is followed by a talk & question and answer period with the films star,
Ryan McMahon. The film unpacks the suite of policies & legislation that expedited the creation of Canada and examines how these policies were put in place at the cost of Indigenous Peoples. The film is not so much an indictment on Canada, as it is a look at Canadian history through an Indigenous lens. The film was made as an effort to create a common place to start, a common language to speak, when we look at the possibility of reconciliation and a pathway forward in Canada.
Entertainer | Comedian
Armed with a degree in Theatre & as a graduate of the prestigious Second City Conservatory (Toronto), Ryan’s comedic storytelling style is fast paced, loose & irreverent as he explores the good, the bad & the ugly between Indian Country & the mainstream.
Since 2010, McMahon has recorded 3 National comedy specials (Welcome To Turtle Island Too, UnReserved & Red Man Laughing) & 2 taped Gala sets at the prestigious Winnipeg Comedy Festival. In 2012, McMahon became the 1st Native comedian to ever record a full mainstream comedy special with CBC TV (Ryan McMahon - UnReserved) and later that year made his debut at the prestigious Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal, QC where he was named to the NEW FACES list at the festival.