Christmas Around the World Makes Comeback for 60th Anniversary

Preparation is in full swing for all 144 International Folk Dance students for the December performances of Christmas Around the World

Usher in the season as International Folk Dance Ensemble (IFDE) prepares for their December show, Christmas Around the World.

Although the Christmas Around the World show is held at the end of the year, the prep work has been going on for months. IFDE’s artistic director Jeanette Geslison has been running practices for this show since the school year began. “The students are learning and perfecting a diverse repertoire of cultural dance selections. We began at the beginning of the semester,” said Geslison. 

This 2021 Christmas Around the World performance will be the 60th show in BYU history, with the exception of last year due to COVID-19. The themes throughout this year’s production include hope, healing and humanity. 

“These themes were inspired by the midst of the pandemic which has affected every single person. We are now coming towards a way to see forward as we heal and through hope, we may be able to have a renewed outlook,” said Geslison. 

She shared that these themes will be symbolized through the Scandinavian advent wreath. “The tradition of the advent wreath is to welcome in Christmas by celebrating each of the four Sundays by lighting first one candle, then two, then three and then four,” she explained. 

The International Folk Dance Ensemble, as well as other Folk Dance Ensembles, will present dances from Hungary, India, Ireland, Russia, Romania, Tibet, Ukraine and the United States. 

The groups have had the opportunity to work with several cultural dance experts this semester leading up to this concert, such as Joseph Kroupa, Tymothy Jaddock, and Elaine Grenko. 

The International Folk Dance Ensemble performance will have two guest performing groups this year including Ngoma Y’Africa and BYU Living Legends

Come enjoy the 60th anniversary of BYU’s Christmas Around the World on December 3 at 7:30 p.m. and December 4 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Patrons can purchase tickets through BYU arts. 

Show Details 

Dates & Times: Dec. 3 @ 7:30 p.m. | Dec. 4 @ 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m.

Where: Marriott Center

All patrons are required to wear a mask while indoors at campus performance venues, regardless of vaccination status.

BYU dancers celebrate various cultures at Christmas Around the World  performance - The Daily Universe