Ethnic dance has been a tradition in the St. Nicholas parish since it’s founding in 1917. The St. Nicholas Russian Dancers were organized in August 1985. The troupe is made up of children and young adults—with some being their parents!
The St. Nicholas Russian Dancers have performed extensively at parochial, civic and primarily internationally related events throughout the Greater Akron area, Northeast Ohio and neighboring states. They perform original folk dances and variations of dances originating from Russia and the Ukraine, as well as other parts of Eastern Europe. Primarily peasant dances, they date back to the czarist era.
The costumes worn symbolize the peasant lifestyle—simple designs, vibrant colors, flowers, ribbons and embroidery. In the sense that dance is a physical expression and celebration of life, the spirit of the founding families of St. Nicholas Orthodox Church and many generations before them is proudly captured by the Russian Dancers.
Director Rosemary Pyrch Simpson studied dance for 15 years while instructing for many years in the Pittsburgh area. She has been the director of this group for over 30 years.