Event celebrating international dance | ABC4 Utah
Emily Wilkinson, Director of World Folkfest International, came to Good Things Utah to talk about the festival and what to expect. This festival, which began in 1986, celebrates the dance styles of many nations. It is one of the largest festivals that celebrates international folk dancing in the United States and the largest in the western United States. The festival runs from July 27 to July 27. 30 at Arts Park in Springville and will feature more than 200 international dancers who traveled to the Beehive State to showcase their country’s rich culture and dance. Wilkinson said they are the only ones in the entire state of Utah to belong to the International Congress of Folk Festivals, which is part of the United Nations. This year will be the first time the festival has taken place after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “COVID has really shut down so many arts and so many international and local festivals,” Wilkinson said. “Coming back from COVID was a real act of passion. It was a lot of work to bring groups here. And so Utah families can see the diversity of the world and not just see but experience [and] to show their children how beautiful the world is and how similar we really are. In addition to traditional dancers from almost every continent, World Folkfest will also feature global cuisine, vendors, musicians, artisans and more. Wilkinson said it was Utah County’s localized “world holiday” and a chance to see beautiful traditional customs from other cultures that we might not otherwise have had the chance to see.
In addition to Wilkinson, GTU received special treatment and a preview of two dances that will take place at the event. The first dance came from two Spanish dancers from the Basque region. This traditional Basque dance has been around since the first century and is a perfect welcome dance for a festive and warm welcome. The dancers chose this dance to thank the people of Utah. The second dance originates from Indonesia which empowers and protects women. The two young women who came to dance donned traditional dance outfits from West Java to perform the Bali dance.
Doors open at 6 p.m. To get 20% off your group tickets, go to WorldFolkFest.org and enter promo code: GoodThingsUtah22