Springville World Folkfest brings different cultures to Utah

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The World Folkfest is back in Springville and is bringing dancers and musicians from all around the world to share their culture through music and dance.

Dancers from Armenia, Australia, two groups from Belgium, Bulgaria, Indonesia, Israel, Philippines and Romania will be performing this year. Performances began Monday evening and will run through Saturday. Each group will perform every night for the audience.

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Dancers from around the world participate in the World Folkfest in Springville. Performances began Monday and will run through Saturday. Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for students.
Corinne Smith from Chicago has been dancing ball room, latin, jazz, ballet, hip hop and modern around 12 years. Dance to her is a way to get away from everything.

“It’s a nice release for stress,” she said. ” When you dance, it puts you in your own world. It’s a way for people to feel good and it’s good exercise and it’s fun.”

Gates open to the park at 6 p.m. for members of the audience to come enjoy the different cultures food and gifts.

Annie Hollowell has been teaching dance for the past two years. While she lived in Scotland she learned the traditional Cheildh.

“Cheildh is fast past and danced with a partner,” Hollowell said. “It’s very similar to swing dancing, but it has a mixture of folk dance with it.”

The Springville Folkfest has become one of the largest folk festivals in the world, serving more than 45 countries including past cultures like China, Mexico, New Zealand, Poland, South Korea, Spain and Tahiti. The Folkfest has come a long way, with the first performance taking place in August of 1986 at Springville High School. In 1991, the Folkfest was moved to the Spring Acres Arts Park. The park is located at 620 South and 1350 East.

Maria Millett started to dance when she was 3 years old. After she graduated high school, she passed up the opportunity to dance in college. She has danced ballet, jazz, modern and hip hop. One of her favorite dances she did was a African dance.

“It’s a different style, our style expresses feelings,” Millett said. “Some cultures dance religious. It expresses their heritage and their ancestry. It’s enriched in there culture.”

Tickets start at $8 for adults. Children from the ages 3-12 are $4 and any child under the age of 3 is free. Any student, military member with an I.D. or senior citizen admission is $7. A group of 10 or more members receive a rate of $6.

Dullain Ehrlich from Mill Creek, Wash., is attending the BYU adult ballroom dance camp for the first time and used to dance with her mother until she fell asleep.

“Dance is something that every generation can enjoy,” she said.

For more information, visit www.worldfolkfest.com.

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