Dance Festivals are for Everyone

One of the greatest aspects of dance is that it is beloved universally. Dance is used as a means of personal expression, as a way to celebrate your heritage, and as an exercise to let off some steam with friends and loved ones. Dance is also about exploration – not only do you learn new moves, but you also discover what makes you happy. With the spirit of exploration in mind, what can be better than heading to some exotic locations and attending some dance festivals to test your steps and meet some new friends? So grab your dancing shoes and your passport, and let’s check out some of these dance-centric destinations!

Vancouver International Dance Festival, Vancouver, British Columbia, CA

This annual dance festival in the serene and naturally beautiful Vancouver, Canada, is currently celebrating its 16th year. In addition to welcoming 29 international dance acts from Japan, Cuba, Sweden and Canada, the Vancouver International Dance Festival also features classes and workshops which are open to all. But you better hurry, this year’s festival is running now until March 19th.

International Dance Festival Birmingham, Birmingham, England

This festival in western England is only held biennially, and will take place this year from May 1-22. Not only are there special offers for attendees, but there are also plenty of chances for participation at this particular festival, so not only can you watch splendid dance acts from across the globe, you can also join in. For more information on the fest, including special offers, check out:

Dublin Dance Festival, Dublin, Ireland

Just a hop, skip, and jump across the pond from Birmingham, and commencing at the tail end of the English fest, the Dublin Dance Festival is a wonderful opportunity to experience the work of some of the greatest dancers in the world. Running from May 17-28, this annual event features workshops and discussions for a total participatory experience, and special discounts are available the more events you sign up for. The Dublin Dance Festival organizers also make it clear that the goal of the festival is to bring the best dancers the world has to offer to Ireland, for the delight and enlightenment of all attendees.

Seattle International Dance Festival, Seattle, Washington

Held this year from June 10-26, this Seattle-based festival features international acts from such countries as Lithuania, Japan and Switzerland. A free preview of the event called “Art on the Fly” will be held in Seattle on May 21 and will be open to the public with interactive events and free classes, street festival style.

Vail International Dance Festival, Vail, Colorado

Another Stateside festival, the Vail International Dance Festival is celebrating 10 years with Damian Woetzel, the former Principal Dancer of the NYC Ballet, as the festival’s artistic director. Held from July 30 – August 13, the festival hits an international peak on August 5 and 6 when a multitude of international dancers perform to share their cultural heritage. Donation for entry into the Vail International Festival’s Fan Club provides access to pre-sale tickets and opportunities to win backstage passes and special meet and greets with the performers. For more information:

Dubai International Dance Festival, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Held annually in the unique and super exotic Dubai, the ritzy city goes all out for this dance festival, where their goal is to bring the international dance community together. Though not much information is available yet for this year’s festivities, it is slated to take place September 8-16, so make sure you keep an eye on their website for all the updates:

Abundance International Dance Festival, Karlstad, Sweden

Only held once every three years, the Abundance International Dance Festival in Sweden is totally on this year, from September 8-10. While the festival is only three days long, the schedule is packed with stunning international acts that are sure to amaze. A unique aspect of this dance festival is that all events are completely free of charge and audience participation is highly encouraged.

International Dance Festival, Bangkok, Thailand

In the colorful and lush location of Thailand, this international dance festival focuses on cultural partnership and nurturing a sense of excitement in the global dance community. In addition to presenting modern choreography, the artists in this festival also take pride in classical dance. This enticing festival has been held annually since 2000, and runs in late November.