In an area of the city where studio dance is often unaffordable for students; several Northeast teachers created a festival that enables students to perform, compete and participate in professional workshops with dance professionals at the DJD Dance Center. Eastside Dance Festival was created to foster positive relationships and community among potentially at risk youth and to provide dance opportunities for underprivileged students in Calgary.
The festival is a partnership between the Calgary Board of Education and the Calgary Catholic School District and involves nine schools: Crossing Park School, Lester B. Pearson High School, James Fowler High School, Nelson Mandela High School, Father Lacombe High School, David Thompson School, St. Mary’s High School, St. Francis High School and Forest Lawn High School. This years’ festival is funded by the “Kaiti Perras Love of Dance Memorial Fund” through EducationMatters. The festival is very grateful to have the support of both the Perras family and Education Matters.
The festival is also working with many professional artists and companies including; Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, Katherine Burrowes and Edgar Reyes of illFx Entertainment, Jaime Mitchell of Free House Dance Plus, Janelle Schiffner of Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, Jomari Samiley of RSVP33, and Dr. Angela Mulrooney of Unleashed Dance Company. Many dance scholarships and awards will be awarded to deserving students at the end of the festival.
The festival takes place on Wednesday, May 16 and Thursday, May 17 at Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, 111 – 12 Ave SE and starts at 6 PM each day.
Read more about the 23 young dancers from Nelson Mandela High School who will be participating at this festival.who will be participating at this festival.