Fabian Fontenelle Zuni/Omaha

Northern Traditional Dancer

Interview ...

Bio ...

Fabian Fontenelle is Zuni/Omaha. He was born in Zuni Pueblo, New Mexico but he also has family in Nebraska. Fabian is the great, great Grandson of the famed Chief Big Elk of the Omaha people (view article) Fabian compliments The Shelley Morningsong Band by adding what has been a long history of delighting audiences from his countless travels around the world. With powerful dance performances intertwined with traditional storytelling, Fabian depicts a profound imagery of a “Spirit World” pronouncing the spoken word of his ancestors in his fluent Native Zuni Language. A performance by Fabian Fontenelle is a show in itself, a captivating display of ancient sacred songs, dancing, drumming and hand-crafted regalia adorned with the intricacy of hand-beading and more.

Fabian is an original member of the American Indian Dance Theatre, and also provided master-work choreography and performances with two-time Grammy Award Winning Taos Pueblo, NM acclaimed artist Robert Mirabal on tour in
“Music from a Painted Cave” which was also featured on PBS television under "Great Performances".

Fabian is also an educator on the history of Native America and has done consulting work and acting for the History Channel, Into the West produced by Stephen Spielberg and other productions as well as education for public schools and museums.

History ...

Chief Big Elk of the Omaha's, Fabians Great Grand Father going back three generations.

Birth: 	1770
Death: 	1846

Native American Chief. He was known as Ong-pa-ton-ga to the Omaha Tribe. As a youngster, the Pawnee Tribe was the enemy of the Omaha people, and Big Elk earned a reputation as a warrior fighting skirmishes with them. Within his own tribe he was known for his courage in battle and for his fairness in making decisions. When Chief Washinggusaba (Black Bird), who was known as a tyrant by the Omaha people, died in 1800, Big Elk was chosen as the new principal chief. About this time the white folks began to pass through and settle in the land that the Omaha considered as theirs. In 1821 and again in 1837 he traveled to Washington DC to negotiate treaties for his people and became known as an accomplished orator and a brilliant negotiator. He continued to lead his people until a fever killed him in 1846. He was buried in Bellevue, Nebraska, at a site called Elk Hill, but known to the Omaha people as Ong-pa-ton-ga Xiathon, meaning, "the Place Where Big Elk Is Buried." (bio by: Tom Todd)

Chief Big Elk of the Omaha's, Fabians Great Grand Father going back three generations.

Birth: 1770 Death: 1846

Native American Chief. He was known as Ong-pa-ton-ga to the Omaha Tribe. As a youngster, the Pawnee Tribe was the enemy of the Omaha people, and Big Elk earned a reputation as a warrior fighting skirmishes with them. Within his own tribe he was known for his courage in battle and for his fairness in making decisions. When Chief Washinggusaba (Black Bird), who was known as a tyrant by the Omaha people, died in 1800, Big Elk was chosen as the new principal chief. About this time the white folks began to pass through and settle in the land that the Omaha considered as theirs. In 1821 and again in 1837 he traveled to Washington DC to negotiate treaties for his people and became known as an accomplished orator and a brilliant negotiator. He continued to lead his people until a fever killed him in 1846. He was buried in Bellevue, Nebraska, at a site called Elk Hill, but known to the Omaha people as Ong-pa-ton-ga Xiathon, meaning, "the Place Where Big Elk Is Buried." (bio by: Tom Todd)

Fabian's Traditional Cd ...

Songs of our Ancestors/Songs of the Zuni

Fabian Fontenelle

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  1. 1 Honor song 01:40
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  2. 2 Buffalo Dance 03:06
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  3. 3 Buffalo song entrance 03:52
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  4. 4 Comanche entrance song 06:07
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  5. 5 Comanche song 04:49
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  6. 6 Grandma's song 03:13
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  7. 7 Zuni Comanche dance song 1 02:43
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  8. 8 Zuni Comanche dance song 2 02:36
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  9. 9 Zuni Lullaby 03:03
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  10. 10 Zuni sunrise 04:04
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