It is saddened to announced the passing of our beloved Native American Hoop Dancer Nakotah LaRance. He died on July 13, 2020.
The American Folklife Center is very sad to pass on news of the death of Nakotah LaRance, a Native American hoop dancer from Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, New Mexico, who performed in the 2016 Homegrown Concert Series.
Nakotah was one of the foremost dancers of his generation, known for traditional hoop dancing and for incorporating his traditions into larger shows such as Cirque du Soleil.
He was also developing a career as an actor, with roles in the TV film “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee,” the series “Longmire,” and the short film “Lightning in the Hand.”
When he visited us at the Library of Congress, he brought several family members along, including his father Steve LaRance, who performed a moving invocation to open Nakotah’s private performance for our Board of Trustees in the Library’s Great Hall, at which this picture was taken.
The AFC sends condolences to Steve, to Nakotah’s whole family, and to the extended community of hoop dancers in which Nakotah was a revered member and teacher.
At the link find a short biography of Nakotah and a link to video of his 2016 performance in the Coolidge Auditorium.
We are saddened by the passing of Nakotah LaRance (Hopi/Tewa/Assiniboine) of Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, New Mexico. Nakotah most recently performed at our Indian Market & Festival in 2016. At that time, he was a 6-time world hoop dance champion. He will truly be missed. pic.twitter.com/jT53cKghtg
— Eiteljorg Museum (@EiteljorgMuseum) July 13, 2020