Yalenka Ukrainian Dancers Society - School of Dance, Calgary-based non-profit charity run by volunteers, is dedicated to sharing a passion for Ukrainian dance to audiences across Canada and the world.
Yalenka’s roots date back to the early 1970s when parents attending St. Vladimir's Ukrainian Orthodox Church organized dance classes for their children. Shortly thereafter, in 1980, the group was named Yalenka, meaning “Christmas Tree”, a name chosen for the vibrant image of enthusiastic children dancing together around the yuletide symbol. On February 22, 1985, Yalenka Ukrainian Dancers Society was incorporated under the Societies Act of Alberta with the objective to:
• Support and promote Ukrainian dancing and spread this aspect of Ukrainian Canadian culture to all ethnic groups within the Canadian mosaic; and
• Be an autonomous non-profit organization and encourage the closer association of all persons of Ukrainian extraction.
Yalenka offers Ukrainian dance classes for students aged 3 to adult. Our instructors bring years of exceptional training in Ukrainian folk dance and ballet, as well as an immense knowledge and love for Ukrainian dance to our school and dancers. Over the years our school has explored choreography from the various regions of Ukraine and our repertoire includes dances from Bukovina, Central, Hutsul, Volyn, and Transcarpathia. Yalenka’s costumes are custom designed and hand-stitched in Lviv, which allows us to showcase the beauty and diversity of Ukrainian folk dress. Through our annual Malanka celebration, festivals, and dance competitions, Yalenka is proud to demonstrate the tremendous talent of our dancers and instructors. Additionally, as a key component of our annual year-end recital, the entire school comes together to create a Storyline production exploring various Ukrainian folk traditions through dance – an amazing testament of our love of dance. This passion for Ukrainian heritage has provided our school with many opportunities to tour across the world and showcase our love of dance.
Yalenka Ukrainian Dancers Society’s mandate is “to teach Ukrainian dance in an environment that promotes commitment, discipline, self-confidence, as well as love for and enjoyment of Ukrainian Culture.” That is something we strive for every day. Now contact us today to join this talented group and make your Baba proud!