Ukrainian teen embraces Mexican folkloric dancing

ByLavinia E. Smith

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Exchange student Alina Ivanova finished the school year at Dinuba High School, and is now uncertain about where she will go because of the Russian invasion of her home country of Ukraine. She is wearing a traditional costume from Costa Chica Guerrero.
Trade college student Alina Ivanova completed the college 12 months at Dinuba Superior University, and is now uncertain about the place she will go since of the Russian invasion of her house nation of Ukraine. She is sporting a traditional costume from Costa Chica Guerrero.

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On a Saturday afternoon in mid-March, Centro de Folklore’s superior school-age dancers lined up on the stage of the Hanford Fox Theatre to execute handkerchief-waving dances from Costa Chica de Guerrero.

The women beamed as they confirmed off embroidered white blouses, pink sashes around their waists, and mustard yellow skirts that swirled with every motion.

Spectators had to glimpse tough to location a beginner Ukranian girl because she moved in sync with more knowledgeable dancers whose roots are soaking wet with Mexican dance and lifestyle.

It was not till veteran folkloric teacher Óscar Hernández paused the clearly show to introduce 17-calendar year-aged exchange university student Alina Ivanova that the viewers found there was a non-Latina doing the dances that determine México to the world.

“I would say I built quite a several blunders,” mentioned Ivanova about her March performance. “I did not do it properly, but I savored it.”

Ivanova’s entire world is far from perfect, because of to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the uncertainty about the situation of her hometown of Vinnytsya, a city of just about 400,000 in western Ukraine that dates back to the 14th century.

On June 20, Ivanova will head again to Ukraine next weeks of not recognizing where she would be headed.

As much as she loves Mexican folkloric dancing – she accompanied her group to a competition very last thirty day period – Ivanova just can’t shake her country’s situation even when she’s absorbed in dancing.

There’s no escape for her.

“Actually, it operates for me in other ways,” stated Ivanova. “It’s been harder for me to dance since when I’m dancing, I use my good feelings and electricity to specific myself.”

From Ukraine to Reedley

Ivanova generally dreamed of coming to The us. She was a finalist for a student trade program when she was in the ninth quality.

Then COVID struck and she experienced to wait around another year to implement.

“I didn’t pick out to go to California, so it was like a lottery,” stated Ivanova. “I obtained lucky to be in California.

Her host sister, Amelia, dances with Centro de Folklor in Selma. It was only natural for Ivanova to try out a different design of dance.

“It’s different from what I’m made use of to, but I appreciated it,” stated Ivanova, who just lately completed her junior calendar year at Dinuba Large Faculty.

B-03-19-22-centro de folklore-2F9A8794
Alina Ivanova, 17, performs a dance from Costa Chica Guerrera alongside with Centro de Folklor on April 19 in Hanford. JUAN ESPARZA LOERA [email protected]

Centro de Folklor teacher Joey Zamora reported Ivanova has improved considerably as a folkloric dancer since her arrival past tumble.

“She was into modern dance, and which is what she did again home,” claimed Zamora. “She absolutely did create.”

Zamora found that Ivanova “doesn’t give up. She actually has the passion to master. She’s just craving to discover all the footwork, the shirt movement, anything.”

Hernández, owner/director of Centro del Folklor, mentioned Ivanova normally takes “no shortcuts” for the duration of her rehearsals.

Zamora mentioned Ivanova questioned if she was ready to accomplish with the competitors workforce.

“I would not have requested you if you couldn’t do it,” Zamora recalled telling Ivanova.

Hernández stated Ivanova didn’t have a history in ballet like a previous trade scholar from Hungary did, “but she caught on very rapidly.”

“Her tenacity is what definitely stuck out the most,” he said. “She started at the similar time as two other brand name new inexperienced persons and you could see the difference of how a lot exertion she was putting into the dance.

Embracing Mexican tradition in the U.S.

Ivanova has fallen in really like with tamales, the Spanish language and the Valley’s warm weather. She attended her to start with significant faculty soccer video game and inevitably recognized the activity.

“I appreciate Mexican meals mainly because I usually wanted to consider it,” she mentioned. “We really do not genuinely have that in Ukraine.”

A conversation with Ivanova – who speaks Ukrainian, Russian and English though discovering French and Spanish – usually turns to the Russian invasion.

She stays in contact daily by means of text or a cell phone get in touch with with her mom and dad. Her father is a technological engineer and her mom is a lawyer. She has a 13-calendar year-previous sister.

Ukraine exchange student Alina Ivanova, 17, took up Mexican folkloric dancing even though attending Dinuba Superior College. She will return to her hometown of Vinnytsya in japanese Ukraine on June 20. JUAN ESPARZA LOERA [email protected]

Most of her kinfolk and university close friends continue being in Vinnytsya.

She traces the recent crisis to former President Viktor Yanukovych, who was ousted by significant protests in 2013-14 for currently being too chummy with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“Our authorities was supporting the Russian govt and disregarding the will of Ukranians,” mentioned Ivanova. “When our country was with out a president, Russia annexed Crimea.”

Ivanova has confidence in present President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

“He is a good leader, and the most critical is he cares about people today and our county not about his welfare as lots of some others did,” she stated. “He is 1 of us.”

Esta historia fue publicada originalmente el 5 de junio de 2022 4:40 pm.