Ballet Folklorico Cultural San Bernardino celebrates 35 years in the community

Ballet Folklorico Cultural San Bernardino has been dancing in the Inland Empire for free, relying on donations to keep them going.

Jaysha Patel Image
Thursday, September 22, 2022
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Ballet Folklorico Cultural San Bernardino has free shows around the Inland Empire because of their love of dance, but rely on donations to continue..

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (KABC) -- Ballet Folklorico Cultural San Bernardino is a nonprofit dance group celebrating 35 years in October.

Director Gloria Olave Chavez has been a part of it since the beginning.

"Basically it's sharing the art of dance. Sharing dances from many parts of Mexico," Chaves said.

The instructors donate their time to teach others how to dance and the participants rarely pay for anything.

"I love it. I love Mexico. It's a form to show love to Mexico and all our parents that are from Mexico and different places, so we just do it because we love it," said dancer Ramses Munoz.

There are 45 folklorico members who range from four to over 20 years old.

Each dance piece can last anywhere from 15 to 50 minutes.

"Each song and each dance tells a story about a city, and through dance they get to learn about their heritage, and I just think it's very beautiful, vibrant, colorful," said Monique Gaona, a mother of one of the dancers.

This is also generational. There are members from multiple families who keep coming back.

"It's important that they know their roots and when I was younger, I was able to dance as well, so this is tradition and passing down the tradition to them, and it's awesome for me as a parent to see them continue with this," said Anna Reyes, a mother of one of the dancers.

Ballet Folklorico Cultural San Bernardino provides free shows at community events around the Inland Empire because of their love of dance and culture, but they rely on donations to keep them going.

"I think it's really important that our young people, the little ones, learn about their heritage, their culture and that they learn it via dance, paint, music," Chavez said.

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