Ukrainian dancers from Yalenka win gold at BC Ukrainian Dance Festival

Leanne Bodenham is now encouraging other dancers to join the company as the dance group has shrunk due to the pandemic.

We welcome anyone of any dance ability. You don’t even have to be Ukrainian to register. It is enough to have the love of the dance especially if one likes the cultural side! –Leanne Bodenham

One of those dancers who also loves the cultural side is Ollie Pawluk. A big reason is that she is 50% Ukrainian. When she dances, she feels compelled to represent her country and show people her Ukrainian culture. Something someone overseas might not be able to do right now with the tragic invasion of the country underway.

It’s important to be able to represent how strong we are as a culture and as a community. I feel like the struggle we’re all going through is very real and very difficult for everyone. Knowing that there’s a release, a sense of security in what we do, bringing happiness and joy to people who can’t, that’s always been a huge part of me. – Ollie Pawluk

Last weekend, the senior Yalenka dance class won gold and the best hopak trophy for their hopak dance at the BC Ukrainian Dance Festival in Mission. This is the second time the trophy has gone to Prince George, the last having been won in 2010.

The Society also plans to hold a fundraiser in Ukraine at the end of the month. A concert will take place at the Prince George Playhouse on Sunday May 28th and all ticket sales will go to the displaced Ukrainian victims of war.

Tickets are $25 and for more information about the event, you can call the Yalenka Community Hall or (250)-613-3407. You can also email [email protected]

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the concert starts at 7:00 p.m. to support a great cause and also see unique dances.

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