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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Home Arts Dance Blast set to take over the Rawlinson

Dance Blast set to take over the Rawlinson

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Dance Blast set to take over the Rawlinson
Tap dancers from Prince Albert’s Performing Arts Warehouse take to the stage during Dance Blast 2017 at the E.A. Rawlinson Centre. -- Jason Kerr/Daily Herald

Dance is back at the E.A. Rawlinson Centre, and local performers couldn’t be happier.

A total of 422 dancers will take the stage to compete for 160 awards as Dance Blast takes over Prince Albert from March 10-13.

“It’s been pretty much two years to the day (since the last festival),” Prince Albert Performing Arts Dance Team president Amy Wilcox Gelhorn said. “We got to run the last festival in 2020, and we were the only festival that ran in 2020, so we are very excited to have everyone back.”

Performers from 12 dance studios will make the perform at the annual event. Pre-COVID, Dance Blast drew as many as 600 performers some years, but Wilcox Gelhorn said 422 is close to the max they can accommodate this year.

Although the number of dance students dropped over the last two years, most studios have done their best to continue instruction virtually. Wilcox Gelhorn expects to see high quality performances at Dance Blast for that reason.

“Studios continued with their dance exams, so it will be exciting for them to get out and actually perform,” she said. “That is what all dancers love to do: perform. They’ve been practicing this whole time, and now they’ll just get to shine.”

There are going to be a few changes, however. This biggest involves the performances themselves. Wilcox Gelhorn said they’ve seen more solo and duo entrants, and fewer group acts sign up for the event.

“It’s definitely different this year,” she said. “Usually we have a lot of big group numbers.”

Regardless, Wilcox Gelhorn said it’s just going to be nice having the Rawlinson full of dancers again.

“It’s just very nice to reconnect with people that you haven’t seen for a number of years, to see familiar faces, and see how they’ve grown as dancers and watch some different choreography.”

Dance Blast begins on Thursday, March 10 at 6 p.m. It runs Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., and Sunday from 9 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Session tickets will be sold in-person at the event, but a livestream will be available for those who want to connect from home. Tickets to access the livestream can be purchased at the E.A. Rawlinson website.