Inclusive dance groups returning to the stage in Saskatoon

Sisters Ava and Emily Radics from Saskatoon have always loved to dance. The sisters joined Dance Collective YXE, an all-inclusive dance program offering classes of every genre as well as programs for those in wheelchairs and those with cognitive and physical impairments.

Their passion started when they were just kids copying moves they saw on TV.

“Then we just started doing duets and we finally found a group where we can both be a part of it and it was inclusive for both of us,” Ava said.

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“We offer a variety of dance classes for all individuals to come and dance and express themselves to an audience or to each other,” artistic director Jodi Simpson-Liburdi said.

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After two years of dancing from home with no recitals due to COVID-19 restrictions, both participants and instructors are excited to be back showcasing their work in front of a live audience.

“I really like dancing on stage and it takes a lot of practice for dancing and technique,” Emily said.

As for wheelchair dancer Christine Scherr, taking two years off from the activity she loves was difficult as she’s been part of the Wheels in Motion dance team for 23 years.

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“I love to do it,” Scherr said. “It gives me exercise and it’s a way for me to make new friends.”

But the dancers agree that their favorite part is the recitals. On Friday, they will finally get to perform their new routines in front of a 300-person audience.

“I’m a little bit nervous but I believe in myself but we will dance our hearts out,” Emily said.

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