Vytautas Beliajus

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Vytautas Finadar "Vyts" Beliajus (born 26 February 1908, Pakumprys, – died 20 September 1994) is considered the father of international folk dancing in the United States.

He specialized in Lithuanian dance, but performed and taught many other types of dance as well. He published multiple books on the subjects of dance and ethnicity, and also started the folklore magazine Viltis.

He was born in Lithuania and emigrated to the U.S. when he was 14 years old. He had two younger brothers, Leonas and Julius, and a sister, Gyte Jekentes. For his contributions to dance education, he was honored in 1972 by the National Dance Association with the Heritage Award.[citation needed]