Branch No. 55 of the AUUC is the parent body of the Calgary Hopak Ensemble. We are extremely proud of our choir, orchestra and dancers. The Children's Dance School is thriving with enrollment growing each year. We are proud to boast that participants include Ukrainian immigrants and fourth and fifth generation Canadians of Ukrainian descent, as well as members of other ethnic backgrounds. In May 1999, we hosted the very successful Pre-Millennium Dance Festival (Dance into the Millennium) at the Jack Singer Concert Hall.
We continue our fund raising projects to sustain our centre, cultural activities and the children's camp, Camp Kamenyar at Sylvan Lake.
Concerts are held at community facilities throughout the city. The Hopak Ensemble receives fre quent invitations to perform throughout the city and the province.
We maintain an active Ukrainian Senior Citizens' Club.
In 1939, two people from Calgary, Anne Skulsky and Kay Wusyk-Wintonyk, participate in the First National Festival of Music, Song and Dance held in Toronto.
Calgary cultural forces presented 52 concerts to the armed forces during WW II. ULFTA women actively participate in the activities of the Red Cross.
Performers participated in the festival held in Edmonton in 1946.
In 1945, plans were made to build a new home for our branch. Hours of volunteer labour, donations of nickels and dimes with much sweat and tears are needed to bring our dream to reality and in 1949 we herald the grand opening of the Ukrainian Hall at 209-4th Ave SE. The old hall is the centre of all our activities until 1968 when the city expropriates the lot and building to make way for new development. In 1976 we moved to our present hall on 28th Ave SW. Some highlights of our activities through the decades of history:
* Radio and television programs featured our choir, orchestra and dancers.
* Operettas - Cossack Beyond the Danube and Natalka Poltavka were featured prominently.
* Ukrainian and Canadian plays were staged - notably Zemlya and Adam's Sons.
* Ukrainian heritage scenes from Bukovinian wedding and Hutsul wedding were performed.
* Branch participates promoted local, provincial and national festivals.
* Shevchenko concerts with Edmonton branch participants were held.
* Participants traveled to BC (Vernon Winter festival) and other provinces.
* Expo '67 in Montreal was a highlight.
* Activities such as the showing of historical, musical and literary films also occured at the hall.
* Support of our press facilitated effective communications, keeping branches across the country informed of the work taking place in the AUUC.
Calgary proudly participated in the history of our branch and our organization. Events strengthened the AUUC and preserved our heritage.