Anthony Middlekamp performs the Povzunetz, a traditional Kozak dance, in preparation for Canadian Mosaic: Celebrating Canada’s 150th May 28 at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre. (Photo submitted)

Dancing for Canadian diversity

Sadok Ukraine Dance Ensemble is inviting dance groups from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds

This year, Vernon’s Sadok Ukraine Dance Ensemble decided to do something a little different — and decidedly Canadian — for their year-end dance theatre performance: they invited dance groups from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds from around the Thompson North Okanagan to join them.

“We’ve always invited other dance groups to join us – other Ukrainian groups from Kamloops and Kelowna, the Celtic dancers of the Argyll School – and this year, we thought why don’t we really celebrate and invite a whole range of cultural groups to perform?” explains Andrea Malysh, artistic director of Sadok.

Joining Sadok Ukraine Dance Ensemble in Canadian Mosaic: Celebrating Canada’s 150th May 28 at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre are Argyll School of Performing Arts, Aviemore School of Highland Dance, dance2fit Classical Indian and Bhangra dancers, Hula Haleu Ke Aloha Polynesian dancers, Kala Afreen Bollywood Dancers, Pokotillo Ukrainian dancers, Vernon Chidori-Kai Japanese Dancers, and Vernon Filipino Dancers.

“One of Sadok’s main aims has always been to share our Ukrainian Canadian culture with others,” says Malysh. “For Canada’s 150th, we wanted have dancers from several different ethnic communities in the Thompson-North Okanagan to join us to celebrate the diversity of this country.”

Joining all the different groups of dancers will be special guest fiddler Vic Ukrainetz of Kelowna, “Because, come on, who doesn’t like fiddle music?” jokes Malysh.

The seeds of this multicultural showcase were sown two years ago when Malysh joined with Janet Hackman, the Creative Director of Argyll School of Performing Arts, to create dance performances that were an fusion of Celtic and Ukrainian dance.

“It was so fun and rewarding to bring these two cultures together through dance that we wanted to do it again — and to invite more groups to join us,” says Malysh.

Joining Hackman and Malysh in creating a multicultural opening dance are Loveleen Kaur and Melanie Piorecky, bringing influences from classical South Indian dance and Bhangra, traditionally from Northern India.

“When Andrea and I first choreographed together, we found out how many similarities there were among the differences of Celtic and Ukrainian dance traditions,” says Hackman.

“As we work with Loveleen and Melanie to weave in elements of Bhangra and south Indian dance as well, it’s apparent that there’s so much common ground in our diversity.”

Canadian Mosaic: Celebrating Canada’s 150th runs at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre May 28 at 2 p.m. Tickets are available for $25 for adults, $22 for seniors, $20 for students, and $10 for preschoolers from the Ticket Seller, 250-549-7469,

Just Posted

Vernon students give the gift of life

Student encourage classmates to become life-long blood donors

Society offers up Christmas dinner

Vernon’s Together For Christmas looks after homeless, poor and those alone and lonely on Dec. 25

Arrest made in lotto ticket thefts

Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP helped by observant public

B.C. Conservatives applaud Site C decision

B.C. Conservatives happy with government decision to proceed

Vernon civic candidate signage rules relaxed

Candidates permitted to post unlimited signs on public property

VIDEO: New series takes in-depth look at sexual harassment in B.C.

Black Press takes a hard look at sexual harassment in B.C.

New fighter-jet competition to have national ‘economic interest’ requirement

Trudeau government wants to replace Canada’s aging CF-18s with 88 new fighters by as early as 2025

The top-binged shows on Netflix in 2017

Which show did you cheat on your spouse with by watching ahead?

B.C. polygamous leader argues charge should be dropped in charter challenge

Winston Blackmore argues some of the evidence shouldn’t be used against him

Greyhound Canada offers “made-in-Canada” solution to growing lack of access to bus service

Greyhound Canada says Connecting Communities Fund will address rural concerns

LETTER: Proportional representation makes votes count

Fair Vote Canada representative responds to Tom Fletcher column

B.C. dog owners warn about chain collars after puppy almost strangled

Young Rottweiler pup couldn’t breathe after another dog caught tooth on his collar

Kamloops RCMP hunt for sexual assault suspect

Police are asking for your help locating Dolapo Ibukun Babatunde

Accused NYC subway bomber expected to face federal charges

Akayed Ullah, 27, was charged Tuesday with terrorism and weapons related charges

Most Read