Thursday, July 08, 2010

Wawel in Regina, Saskatchewan

From June 28 – July 4, 2010, Polonia from both the United States and Canada descended upon the prairies of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada to participate in the Polish Folk Dance Association of the Americas (PFDAA) dance festival. The Wawel Folk Ensemble was one of several US ensembles that participated in the event.

These festivals, held every several years and in a different city, are an opportunity for the various dance ensembles to get to know each other, as well as participate in folk dance and ethnography workshops presented by dance choreographers, expert in their respective regions, from Poland. This year’s festival featured choreographers who taught songs and dance from the Beskid Zywiecki area in southern Poland, Biłgoraj in eastern Poland, and Kaszuby from northwestern Poland.

In addition to participating in dance workshops, participating ensembles performed at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Depot in Regina as part of its 125th anniversary celebration. Wawel presented its Sieradz suite at the RCMP Depot celebrations. Following the performance festival attendees had the opportunity to tour the Depot’s museum and watch the sunset ceremony which featured RCMP cadets retiring the Canadian colors, displaying drill formations, as well as the RCMP cadet band and several other pipe bands.

The highlight of the week; however, was the gala performance on Saturday, July 4, 2010 which was held at the Conexus Center in Regina and attended by 674 people. At the gala performance, Wawel presented its Sieradz and Podlasie suites. The gala performance was capped off by a Krakowiak finale which featured all 120 festival participants.

Wawel returned to Detroit on July 4, tired but energized by the experience. And they’ll have to be. Wawel’s next public performance is July 9, 2010 at the American Polish Century Club’s Polish Festival in Sterling Heights, Michigan. On July 16, 2010 Wawel will hold its second annual bowling fundraiser at Regal Lanes in Warren. Money raised at the bowling fundraiser will go toward Wawel’s trip to Poland next summer to participate in the triennial Festival of Polish Folklore held in Rzeszów, Poland. For additional information about booking Wawel for your function or about the upcoming bowling fundraiser, please visit

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