ESDF Society removes barriers preventing young people from training and performing in Dance. The ESDF builds connections between local professional artists and school dance programs, ensuring young dancers can relate to their instructors and are exposed to a wide variety of dance forms; their history, and evolution within socio-political contexts.

These indiviuals are provided with dance workshops, artist residency programs and for those who choose the dance as a career path, they are given teacher training workshops to contune their education and passion all through ESDF.


We work to deliver free after-school programming.

In collaboration with Pulse Studios Gateway Project, Eastside Dance Festival alumni are trained with some of the most exciting dance artists in Canada, receive professional training, guidance on resume writing and teaching experience. Once they have proven their skills they are mentored while running free after school dance programs in elementary and middle schools in their own communities, often underserved and consisting of low-income families who would otherwise not have access to dance lessons.

Dance facilitates capacity for community building,  and empowers young people to make meaningful contributions to the greater society. We introduce young dancers to professional artists, provide mentorship and leadership opportunities, and show them how their contributions can make a positive impact.



Our alumni continue to be a part of the inclusive arts community in Calgary as artists and patrons after they leave our program.  We provide bursaries and scholarships to aspiring dancers through our community partners. We provide training and performance opportunities so students may showcase their work to many audiences, pursue dance after high school through our U of C partnership, and become lifelong patrons and participants in the arts.

Festival Information & Registration

ESDF Society and it’s board are so excited to annouce the workshops for teachers and students as well as the 2024 Festival iteslf.

    • Teacher Workshops – Jan 25th & 26th 2024
    • Student Workshops – May 2nd & 3rd 2024
    • Our Official Dance Festival- May 9th 7 May 10th

U of C Student Mentorship

Each participating ESDF school has access to a university student mentor who visits on a regular basis to provide guidance, insight, and leadership. Peer mentors engage ESDF students in a variety of topics including post-secondary programming, admissions, scholarships, campus life, how to access campus resources, and participate in advanced skills workshops throughout the year. 

Wild Dog Film Festival Mentorship Program

Students attend the Wild Dogs international dance film festival curated by W & M Dance Studios and are inspired by world-renowned filmmakers and dance artists. Students are mentored by local filmmakers to create, design, and film their own work, gaining guidance and mentorship to hone their technical and cinematic skills.

Bursaries & Scholarships

ESDF participants who express an interest in pursuing dance outside of high school, have access to bursaries they may use in any capacity to follow their passion. Whether it is to purchase dance shoes, attend workshops and classes, or travel to a part of the world where their favorite dance form originates, ESDF is invested in providing financial aid to young dancers who have a desire to learn and experience more. In 2023, ESDF had access to over $100,000 in scholarships from local community partners who provided training opportunities for our dancers.