The German Junior Folk Dancers are celebrating their 20th anniversary as an independent Folkdance group in Saskatoon this year. Colorful and lively, the dancers perform throughout the province and have become a tradition at many old and new multicultural festivals.
Their repertoire includes over 40 different dances that have been handed down through the years, not only just in Germany, but throughout Europe. Some of the most fun dances are the folkdances that bring history to life by telling stories of old ways of labour, life and courtship.
The costumes the dancers are wearing represent heritage dress from the north and north-central areas of Germany, with the headdress being a significant part of it. Young girls usually wear flowers in their hair, with the long ribbons attached, while the married women would make their own special cap, depending on the tradition of where they live. Our older girls are wearing a gold cap fashioned after the style in the northern Mecklenburg area.
The group meets once a week to practice, and takes part in numerous events throughout the year. They especially enjoy dancing as part of multicultural festivals to celebrate the music and colorful dance along with the many nations who are also keeping alive their heritage dancing here in Saskatchewan. As a very unique cultural learning opportunity, the group has travelled to Germany and Austria to see where some of these dances come from.
Dancers range in age from 3 to 16 and they are excited to be a part of the Heritage Festival of Saskatoon. Visit them online at germanjuniorfolkdancers.ca and follow them on Twitter @Saskatoon_GJFD.