Kateryna Shepertycka - Artistic director Petro neborskij - choreographer and founding artistic director
Artistic Director - Kateryna Shepertycka
Kateryna is passionate about the power of dance to move audiences and to change lives. She has dedicated 40 years to the development of Ukrainian dance in Ottawa, Canada's capital and is honoured and excited to serve the Svitanok Ensemble as Artistic Director, beginning in 2019.
Founder of the Ottawa School of Ukrainian Dance (1979) and co-founder of the Svitanok Ensemble (1991), Kateryna studied classical, character, and Ukrainian dance in Ottawa, in Saskatoon, at the Saskatchewan School for the Arts, and as a full-time student at the Institute of Culture in Kyiv, Ukraine. She credits her passion for Ukrainian dance to those with whom she has had the opportunity to study: Lesia Pritz, Sonia Kuryliw, Jaroslaw Klun, Peter Pawlyshyn, Bohdan Zerebecky, Marcella Senaiko, Kim Vasylenko, Klara Baloh, Serhij Zubatov, Laryssa Svetkova, Alexander Kamin', Zenon Kolobych, Natasha Tolkacheva, Danovia Stechishin, Zhenia Bahri and Petro Neborskij (Svitanok Ensemble founding artistic director).
A leading performer with Ottawa's Dnipro and Svitanok Ensembles for 28 years, Kateryna has mounted her original choreography on various ensembles and collectives in Canada, including Svitanok. She served as co-artistic director of Ottawa’s Dnipro Ensemble (1981-1991) and of Thunder Bay’s Vesnyanka Ensemble (1989-1991).
Kateryna is a graduate of the University of Ottawa with degrees in Music and Communication (thesis - human creativity), and with additional work in Slavic Studies and Arts Administration. She currently serves as Co-ordinator, Cultural Development and Initiatives at the City of Ottawa, working in the areas of cultural planning, policy and engagement.
Choreographer and Founding Artistic Director - Petro Neborskij
An honoured artist of Ukraine, Petro Neborskij served as the Artistic Director/Choreographer of the Svitanok Ukrainian Dance Ensemble for over 20 years and continues to choreograph for the Ensemble. Petro performed for 22 years on the professional stage as a dancer with the Veryovka Song and Dance Ensemble of Ukraine, the final 10 years as a soloist. He studied for 6 years at the Institute of Theatre in Kyiv and 3 years at the Institute of Folklore, Ethnography and Culture of the Academy of Science of Ukraine, working on a dissertation focused on the use of dance in Ukrainian dramatic theatre.
Petro provided dance instruction at the Institute of Culture in Kyiv, Ukraine for close to 8 years, and mounted a large body of original Ukrainian dance choreography on Kyiv's Berehinya Song and Dance Ensemble. He has led numerous Ukrainian dance workshops and classes throughout Canada. In 2006, Petro completed his Honours Baccalaureate in Theatre at the University of Ottawa. Petro is passionate about creating new choreography and seeing its growth and development as it is implemented in the dance studio.
Ukrainian dance culture is not static. Its constant development reflects life in ever new and vital ways. In Svitanok's creative practice, Ukrainian dance serves as an unlimited source of artistic expression through which dance traditions are interpreted from a contemporary perspective.
One of Svitanok's main objectives is to create a form of dance theatre - presenting well-developed dance stories filled with meaningful content and ideas. Such works of choreography describe life in a variety of ways with its events, conflicts, actions and resolutions. This objective requires that stage characters be created and described not only as joyous, but as individuals who dream and grieve, suffer, struggle and overcome.
- Petro Neborskij, Svitanok Ensemble Founding Artistic Director
Featured Ukrainian Canadian
Mr. Neborskij has been highlighted as a Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) Featured Ukrainian Canadian. Read the interview on the UCC website.
Petro Neborskij, Svitanok Ensemble Founding Artistic Director, performing with the Veryovka National Academic Ukrainian Folk Choir, based in Kyiv, Ukraine.