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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

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Thirza Defoe!! Hoop Dancer, Maker, She Ain't no Faker!/Make Milwaukee 2012 Week 1

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I couldn't wait to tell this story. In fact, this story had to be two stories, so I am providing you  Part 1 of a 2 part story on the amazing, remarkable, talented, beautiful, and powerful Thirza Defoe. Never heard of her? Well, just google her name and you will be linked to myriad projects with which she is involved.

I'll admit it; I'm a bit biased. I have known Thirza since she was a student of mine at Pius XI High School, right here in Miltown. I was lucky enough to not only be her teacher, but also her friend, and was invited to her 18th birthday celebration, Ojibwe-style. Little did I know that I would reconnect with her (no pun intended; I mean, she works with hoops..connecting hoops, okay?) while doing a story on the Mad Hot Ballroom event at the Bradley Center last spring. She performed her remarkable hoop dance for an enrapt crowd, and we both ran up to one another afterward and created our own hoop: a big, freakin' hug.

Thirza is now all grown up, and embarking on some rather amazing journeys of her own. Not only is she a renowned hoop-dancer, but she is also a grad-student at NYU, is a member of Native Punx, and is currently teaching a writing workshop in Alaska. Get to know Thirza by listening to Part 1 of her story.