The Peace River Muzyka dancers have entertained audiences with their color and rhythm, since the club’s conception in 1976.
The Dancers, who range in ages of 4 – 18, practice once a week from the beginning of September through to the following May, when the season ends in a final concert. During the dance season, the dancers also perform at numerous community events and travel to compete in out of town Ukrainian Dance Festivals.
To promote a cultural experience for our dancers and their families, the club hosts a Ukrainian New Year’s (Malanka) or Spring (Vesna) celebration. The essence of Ukrainian culture is experienced through food, music, and dance.
Our senior dancers have also had the opportunity to travel to the Ukraine and attend dance workshops and to learn first hand, about the culture.
The Muzyka Story
In 1975 a few ladies decided to start Ukrainian dancing. Vikki Hrynyk, Ann Baranoski, Mary Goy and Dellena Freeland. Many others helped.
They searched for a Ukrainian dance instructor and came up with Brenda Muzyka from Edmonton. She would arrive on the bus every Saturday morning at 5:00am. The ladies took turns picking her up and she would go back at 4:00pm on the bus to Edmonton. What a great young lady she was. Brenda would bring the material for the costumes. The costumes were first cut out on newspaper then stitched onto the cloth then sewn. There was a lot of cross stitching (embroidery) to do.
The Ukrainian Committee of Peace River was incorporated January 8th, 1976. Today it is still run by hard working parent volunteers who give a lot of their time to keep the club going and the kids dancing. The current instructor still comes from Edmonton.
Congratulations to Mary Goy for winning the prestigious 2014 Hetman Award. This award acknowledges significant volunteer achievements of outstanding Ukrainian Albertans.
Nathan Fitch grew up in Edmonton, AB and began dancing at the age of five with the St. Basils School of Ukrainian Dance. He honed his dance skills with the Kupalo and Viter performing ensembles. Following high school, Nathan danced with the Volya Ukrainian dance ensemble and toured with the Vohon Ukrainian dance ensemble.
Nathan Fitch has a vast knowledge of Ukrainian dance and culture that he has acquired through his many years in the Ukrainian dance community in Alberta. He brings with him twenty five years of dancing experience and seventeen years of Ukrainian dance instruction experience.
Nathan has toured and performed globally representing Ukrainian dance in Scotland, Italy, Ukraine, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, California, Oregon, New York and nine provinces in Canada. Nathan has trained and taken workshops in Canada, the United States, Argentina, as well as in Ukraine.
Nathan has taught across Alberta and British Columbia and continues to enjoy sharing his love of Ukrainian dance. Nathan has a strong emphasis on dance technique and promoting the Ukrainian culture through the art of dance. Nathan is in his tenth year as Artistic Director of the Kryla Ukrainian Dancers in Bonnyville, Alberta and he is excited to join the Muzyka family.