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AWARD-WINNING ‘SPIRIT OF THE DANCE’ HEADLINES DOLLYWOOD’S 2012 FESTIVAL OF NATIONS PRESENTED BY HUMANA

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn.—Foot-stomping Celtic rhythms and fast-paced choreography collide as the award-winning “Spirit of the Dance” headlines Dollywood’s 2012 Festival of Nations presented by Humana.

“I just finished a world tour that took me to Europe and Australia, and I was reminded of how much great entertainment other countries have to offer,” Dolly Parton said. “I’m so excited to invite these international performers to share their talents with my Dollywood guests during Festival of Nations this spring.”

Winner of nine Global Awards, including Best Choreography and Best International Production, “Spirit of the Dance” has entertained more than 30 million people worldwide.

“Spirit of the Dance” features the world champion dancers of the Irish International Dance Company whose frenzied feet, when moving in military precision, have been compared to the sound of a runaway freight train. Irish in origin and bursting with raw energy, “Spirit of the Dance” combines heart-pounding Irish dance with uplifting vocal harmonies presented by Celtic singers who perform a selection of powerful, passionate songs.

“Spirit of the Dance” is performed in DP’s Celebrity Theatre and, along with all Festival of Nations shows, is included with park admission.  

Dollywood’s 2012 Festival of Nations lineup also includes:

  • The Paper World Show by Mimirichi (March 24-April 30) which stars three clowns from Ukraine who transform something as ordinary as paper into the extraordinary, extending the show beyond the stage as audience members are invited to participate.
  • Los Pampas Gauchos (March 24-April 30) performs traditional music, dance and comedy of an Argentine fiesta and builds to a spectacular finale with powerful rhythms of dancing gauchos.
  • Veseli Begunjcani (April 2-30) performs the fun and lively sounds of Bavarian music from the group’s native Slovenia. Virtuoso musicians and lively vocalists highlight the show with a fast-paced Slovenian polka party. 
  • Ashelin (April 11-30) a band of five sisters from Newfoundland Canada, who perform traditional folk songs as well as original songs which feature their sibling harmonies.
  • Zebra Stelzentheater of Germany (March 24-April 30) performs light-footed dance high atop wooden and spring-loaded stilts. The group’s ever-changing formations and choreography fills the streets as dancers in brightly colored costumes interact with guests throughout the park.
  • Russian Academic Band (March 24-April 9) performs under the direction of the Ulyanovsk State Symphony Orchestra’s Nikolai Novitchkov. This brass band delivers a unique brand of traditional Russian and Dixieland music perfected over the past 28 years.
  • Atahualpa (March 24-April 30) brings a rhythmic blend representing different areas of the Andes with a repertoire of contemporary music, South American dance rhythms and traditional songs that resonate from native Incan instruments played alongside guitars and keyboards.
  • Zambian Vocal Group (March 24-April 30) brings a capella music combined with traditional African rhythms, vocal percussion and complex harmonies, all performed by five young men with a message of unity, hope and blessings.

   Dollywood was recognized in 2010 with the theme park industry’s most prestigious honor, the Applause Award.  The Applause Award honors a park whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have inspired the industry with its foresight, originality and sound business development.

   Based in the picturesque Great Smoky Mountains, Dollywood is a 150-acre family adventure park open nine months a year (late March through December) and offers more than 40 rides and attractions; award-winning live entertainment featuring country, bluegrass, gospel and mountain music; and a dozen crafters authentic to the East Tennessee region.  A family-friendly vacation destination, Dollywood also includes the 35-acre Dollywood’s Splash Country, voted America’s “Must-See Waterpark.”  Dollywood offers all-inclusive vacation planning with a variety of overnight lodging options.  For more information, call 1-800-DOLLYWOOD or visit dollywood.com.   

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