Sharing Dance Day 2023
Henderson Park at Arden Road.
Parking is available at Henderson Recreation Centre.
Spend the afternoon celebrating the joy of dance with The Lekwungen Traditional Dancers and perform this year’s Sharing Dance Choreography.
The 2023 NBS Sharing Dance Choreography was created by Kimberley Cooper, Eugene Baffoe, Tracee Smith and Roger Sinha and it celebrates the power of collaboration and the vibrant diversity of Canadian dance artists. The original choreography was created in 2017 as a Canada 150 Signature Project.
Learn this year’s choreography at home or join a free adult Wednesday workshop taught by Canadian College of Performing Arts undergraduate, Andrea Jouault Torres at the Monterey Recreation Centre. Call 250-370-7300 to register.
Hosted by Oak Bay Parks, Recreation and Culture
Lekwungen Traditional Dancers:
The history of the Lekwungen Traditional Dancers stretches back 45 years. Currently under the guidance of sisters Lyla and Beth Dick, the group was founded in 1978 at the Victoria Native Friendship Center by Ray Peters from the Cowichan Tribe along with late Bob Malcom and Jim Dick and surviving founding Butch and Skip Dick.
Jim and his wife, Bernadette, brought it home to the Songhees Nation and continued the family tradition of teaching the songs and dances to subsequent generations. An elder, late Flora Joseph gifted the group the Paddle Welcome song and it has become a cornerstone work in their repertoire. Following Jim’s passing in 1999, Bernadette (aka Dell or Momma) kept the tradition alive and under her guidance the group has grown to as many as 25 members of all ages.
They are highly sought after to represent the Lekwungen people at significant events throughout the region. They have performed to welcome visiting Royalty, the Lieutenant Governor and the Prime Minister, Mayor, Councils, and many others. One of their favourite performances is to greet Indigenous people from around the world.
In Lyla’s own words, “Being able to have these songs means we are doing all right to see-showing who we are as a Nation, performing with pride and honour and hope that our ancestors are pleased with how we carry ourselves.”