Performing Dance Arts, (www.PerformingDanceArts.ca), which provides professional dance lessons for kids of all ages, is weighing in on Ukrainian dancers celebrating 125 years since their people’s migration to Canada.

It’s been 125 years since the first group of Ukrainian settlers immigrated to Canada. That event can be traced back to 1891, and on Sunday, May 29, the Ukrainian Dance Ensemble will celebrate this occasion. (Source: “Dancers are fired up to share their Ukrainian heritage,” The Morning Vernon, May 25, 2016; http://www.vernonmorningstar.com/entertainment/380722531.html?mobile=true.)

“Dance has always been tied to cultural celebrations,” says Ashley Daychak, creative director at Performing Dance Arts. “Dancing is such a spirited tradition and in Canada, we get to see those traditions brought to life. It’s one of the great advantages to living in this country.”

Canada today hosts the third-largest population of ethnic Ukrainians behind only Russia and Ukraine itself. The 17th annual Okanagan Ukrainian Festival will feature special guest dancers including the Pokotilo Ukrainian Dancers of Kamloops.

“I think people can easily imagine Ukrainian dancers,” Daychak continues. “The costumes, the colours, and even the movements are so classic. They truly have a rich cultural history that Canada has been fortunate enough to be a part of. And having a day to celebrate that history and tradition of dance and other rituals is a great thing.”

The production this year is titled “VATRA – FIRE.” Dancers of all ages will be involved in the celebration, with some as young as three years old. Singing and dancing are expected to go on well into the night, as is the custom for this type of celebration.

“We just love dance so much ourselves. Performing Dance Arts has seen so many dancers come through our doors and we see the passion and energy they exude with every dance step that they take,” Daychak concludes. “It’s truly an amazing thing to witness the impact of dancing both on the individual and the overall culture.”

Performing Dance Arts provides both professional and casual dance lessons to children of all ages and levels. It operates out of a dance studio in the Woodbridge area and serves all of the York Region and the Greater Toronto Area.