July 23, 2021

Dancing in a bubble


The Roma Pryma Bohachevsky (RPB) Dance Academy Workshop has invariably been one of the highlights of the Ukrainian Cultural Festival. The group’s exciting dance presentations are not only entertaining, but they also preserve Ukrainian heritage by illustrating steps and costumes from various regions of Ukraine. Due to COVID-19 concerns, co-director Anya Bohachevsky-Lonchyna adhered to Ulster County guidelines to assure the safety of all participants at the two-week Workshop by requiring proof of vaccination, COVID-19 tests and questionnaires. Ms. Bohachevsky-Lonchyna also provided participants with six gallons of hand sanitizer and air purifiers. In addition, unvaccinated parents were not permitted to visit the camp, dancers underwent daily temperature checks and no dancers were allowed to go into town.

None of these COVID-19-related restrictions and requirements dampened the camaraderie of members who organized their own entertainment. All the dancers view the RPB Workshop as their family and home. Last summer, a virtual dance camp was conducted over Zoom sessions, with many new viewers from as far away as Sweden. This year, three participating Workshop dancers came from non-Ukrainian backgrounds. Co-directors Orlando Pagan and Ms. Bohachevsky-Lonchyna are optimistic about maintaining classes throughout the fall.