SoS Van 2016 Year in Review
Merci 2016, Hello 2017!!
2016 was a busy year for us in Vancouver! We worked on collaborations old and new with the Royal Academy of Bhangra and the Seaforth Highlanders, put in countless hours of rehearsal at The Dance Centre, taught full adult recreational classes year-round, hosted two Whisky Fling fundraisers, danced at a scores of local festivals, events, parades and we even danced in the pouring rain twice! (A regular hazard of dancing outdoors in Vancouver!) Perhaps the jewel of 2016 though was our trip to Paris in October to perform and teach highland dance at the 8th Annual International Body Music Festival.
The IBMF is truly a gathering of world cultures. Over 200 festival-goers and artists from all over France, around the world were in attendance: Canada, Ecuador, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Peru, USA, Finland, Italy, Russia, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Netherlands, Spain, Cyprus, Turkey, Czech Republic, Germany and more. We were one of only three Canadian companies. Four members of SoS Vancouver, including Artistic Director and choreographer Susan Nase traveled to Paris to teach a master class of the percussive elements of Scottish highland dance as well as to present the original choreography of “Highland Dance Body Music."
Scottish Highland dancing has never been presented at this festival before. There was tremendous interest from the global group of students in attendance at the workshop to not only learn the Scottish jig dance steps, but also to absorb the history of the dance. The class ended with a long question and answer period with great questions asked and much discussion on the cultural roots of the Scottish dance form and it’s connection to Canada. It was wonderful to share this information with such a diverse and global community! The performances went equally well, with many audience members commenting on how unique, innovative and genuine the work presented was.
With such a busy schedule, 2016 really flew by and it's hard to believe we are already ringing in 2017! We've no plans to slow down this year though. We're starting the year off with January packed full of Robbie Burns celebrations and the Chinese New Year Parade. A heartfelt thank you to all of our supporters in 2016 and we are looking forward to more adventures in Scottish dance in 2017. Happy New Year!!