Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Lithuania Mania

Lithuanian Folk Dancers
On Sunday, our dear friends, Audrey and Jeff, invited us to the 13th Lithuanian Folk Dance Festival at the Galen Center near USC. It seems they know one of the main organizers of the event. I'm always up for Eastern European folkiness (my roots are Ukranian, Russian and Polish), so we accepted their invitation.

It was a sunny, beautiful day. We arrived at USC around 1:30, parked in the parking structure near the dorms on Figueroa and crossed the street to the Galen Center. This is a relatively new building where USC basketball and volleyball are played. It's a really nice, modern building with interesting artistic touches.

We found our $40 apiece seats and saw the Mistress of Ceremonies, Ruta Lee, center stage. Ruta is Lithuanian. Who knew? She's fluent in the language and is an ardent supporter of all things Lithuanian here in the United States. Check out her website and you can read about all of the philanthropic work she's done for the Lithuanian community as well as for the charitable showbiz organization, the Thalians.

The show was a whirling extravaganza of dancers in colorful embroidered and woven costumes. Most of the dances depicted farming and nature rituals. The hundreds of participants were very young to very old. This was family entertainment, for sure! We hung out for a few hours, then decided that we'd had enough of hopping, skipping, jumping and whirling about.

We drove over to the Rodeo Mexican Grill on Olympic Blvd. and Burlington for an early dinner. It was, of course, delicious. Thanks to Audrey and Jeff for inviting us to this memorable performance!

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At 5:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The costumes are beautiful! Love all those woven prints.


At 6:22 PM PDT, Blogger Natalie said...

I love the costumes. They are gorgeous. It looks like an amazing performance.

At 4:50 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ruta Lee is Lithuanian? I went to her website. She's really involved!


At 6:41 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lithuanians? Classic cars? Vans shoe art parties? Seders?

You get around gal! Livin' vicariously through you. Loving the hats in those photos.

Always a pleasure!


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