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Mercy High School ~ Farmington Hills, Michigan


Mercy High School ~ Farmington Hills, Michigan


Mercy High School ~ Farmington Hills, Michigan


Student Spotlight: Emily Wolffe

Emily Wolffe dances in her recital.

Emily Wolffe, a junior, immersed herself in the Polish culture at young age through Polish dance.

NP: When did you first start Polish dance?

EW: When I was 5.

NP: Why did you choose to do Polish dance?

Ew: I am Polish and when I was little two of my best friends did Polish dance. My mom wanted to get me to start an activity so she said to choose Irish or Polish dancing and I chose Polish because of my friends.

NP: Is Polish dance one specific type of dance or are there other variations of it?

EW: There are different aspects of Polish dance. You have polkas that are Americanized versions of Polish dancing, You have regional aspects that are specific to one region and have different costumes, or there is the national aspect where everyone in Poland wears the same type of costumes and dances the same way. There are also more modernized aspects with jazz.

NP: Do you know any specific history about your ancestors from Poland?

EW: We have a family legend that the reason my great-great grandfather came to America was he was a Polish count caught on the wrong side of revolution. I’m not sure if it’s true; it’s more of a myth.

NP: Have you ever been to Poland?

EW: Yes, I went with a couple of other organizations who offered the trip to Polish dancers. It was in exchange with the Polish government. We went for two weeks. It was fun because we just had a couple chaperones who spoke Polish so we all became really close trying to translate together.

NP: What was the most interesting place you went to?

EW: We visited Auschwitz which is something you never forget.

NP: Can you speak Polish?

EW: I know a couple words and songs like the Polish national anthem. I can pronounce some things and I know basic phrases.

NP: What is your favorite thing about Polish dancing?

EW: It depends on the year. Sometimes its the polka. Other years I love the region costumes. Sometimes I really hate a costume because you have no idea how hot it is to dance in those in 90 degree weather.

NP: Do you plan on continuing dancing?

EW: Yes, at least till I graduate. When you do graduate, you get to do stunts for the group dance during the year and can do more Polish solos. You get more of a choice. I’m the only graduate of my year, so when I am in my last year it will be really exciting.

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