Chervona Kalyna is a dance ensemble keeping Ukrainian folk dance alive in Los Angeles. Founded in 2011, the ensemble operates out of the Ukrainian Culture Center in East Hollywood where they perform at their events, including the famous Pysanka Festival which celebrates the art of Easter egg decorating.
Los Angeles has a significant number of Ukrainian immigrants, and it was important for many parents to teach their American born children their roots. Chervona Kalyna provides a place for children and adults to stay connected to their Ukrainian culture through folk dances. Each dance has a meaning whether it be the traditional welcome dance, a performance that depicts a fable, or one that represents the start of a new season.
The ensemble forms a part of a vibrant Ukrainian community in Los Angeles that includes the culture center, the Ukrainian Arts Center, restaurants, and countless festivals and events. The ultimate goal is to preserve and share Ukrainian culture in this diverse city.
Asya Gorskaya, the director of Chervona Kalyna, shared some valuable words from a seminal book on Ukrainian dance:
“The aim of art is to affect different people in the same way, to make them jointly shed the same tears or laugh the same laughter. The language of art, including that of the dance, is international and therefore it serves the purpose of mutual understanding among nations. With the language of dance, we strive to tell about the life and work of the Ukrainian people in the historic past and future.”
Every Ukrainian and every parent who brings their children to the ensemble in our community center. They understand that they will have to know their roots, culture, and heritage.