Chaban Ukrainian Dance Group began its existence as an affiliate of the Ukrainian Youth Association (CYM) of Thunder Bay, Ontario. Including dance as a regular activity, the Barvinok Vocal Ensemble, a mandolin orchestra, theatre groups, and youth clubs were also a noteworthy part of this affiliation.
Chaban is noted for its striking and colourful costumes whose authenticity and variety can be attributed to the decades-long study and development by Mrs. Slava Mulyk, Mrs. Anna Huk, Mrs. Hanya Cvornjek, Mrs. Alexa Hadley, and designers throughout Canada and Ukraine. Chaban’s authentic, stylized costumes help preserve Ukrainian culture through dance. Chaban’s current Costume Coordinator is Hanya Cvornjek.
1980 – The Legacy Begins
In 1980, under the leadership of Mark Zurevinsky and Hanya Karpowich, the dance group was formally organized as an ensemble by the name Veselka. From the inception of Veselka, consistent administrative leadership by the members directed its cultural identity under the guidance of Halya Huk-Huzan, Petrusia Huk, Hanusia Tkaczyk, Hanya Karpowich, Anna-Marie Eckensweiler, and Larry Stroud, Chaban’s
1987 – New Artistic Direction
Since 1987, Chaban has been under the artistic direction of Cathy Paroschy Harris, assisted by Mike Romaniuk until 1991, at which time the ensemble adopted their current name. Under Mrs. Paroschy Harris’s direction, the group has developed in scope, incorporating regional diversity in dance.
For 40 years, Chaban has been a leader in preserving Ukrainian culture through dance. Chaban’s multitalented and multicultural dancers and volunteers continue to showcase the diverse regions of Ukraine. They exhibit vivacious and lively dances with a variety of choreographic styles. Chaban is dedicated to incorporating talents from our own teachers and guest choreographers from Canada and Ukraine.