What exactly is Irish Dance Anyway?

Contributor Moira from Sheeaun Academy
I asked Moira to explain what exactly Irish Dance is. So she stopped by thehouseoftrue to explain it to us.
Instructor Frank at the 2011 Providence Oriechtas and the Sheeaun Academy Dancers
What sets Irish Dance apart from other dance styles?

There are several things that set Irish Dance apart.  For one thing, it’s very fast!  Over the years, the thing I’ve heard most often from people is that they are fascinated by how fast we are able to move our feet and legs, and they’re even more fascinated that we can stay in sync while moving so quickly.

Sheeaun Academy Award Winning Dancers at a Feis

Another thing that sets Irish dance apart is the distinctive technique:  the very crossed feet and the arms tight to the sides…you don’t see that in any other form of dance and I think the rigid posture really helps to create the look and style of an Irish dancer.

Then there are the costumes…the beautiful, intricate Celtic designs, the wigs, etc.  It’s a look you don’t see anywhere else.

When you think of Irish Dance what three words come to your mind and why?

Beauty – I think the rhythm, footwork, and style make Irish dance one of the most beautiful art forms to watch.

Discipline – my years of competing and performing have most definitely taught me about discipline and dedication.  It is one of the most difficult forms of dance and no matter how naturally talented you are, it cannot be done well without a lot of hard work and practice.

Friendship – I am so grateful for the relationships I have because of Irish dance.  I have made so many wonderful friends throughout my life – with fellow dancers, teachers, and parents of the children I teach.  Every year brings new people…wonderful people!

How has Irish Dance changed you?

My 1st thought after reading this question was, “how hasn’t it changed me?!” It was the 1st thing I truly loved.  It gave me life-long friendships, brought me all over the world, taught me about hard work, practice, teamwork, showed me what it felt like to succeed, what it felt like to fall down, how it felt to come in 1st place, how it felt to come in last place, taught me how to take criticism, taught me how to give criticism, and taught me to be a good teacher.

On a side note, when I read Moira’s responses to these questions, what really resonated with me was the last answer. I cannot stress how much Miss Moira and her interactions with my daughter have made an impact on  Miss P. I think because Miss Moira’s love and passion for the dance is so apparent, it makes it all the more important to Miss P. It has become such an integral component to Miss P’s personality. She is proud of herself because of the way she has been instructed. That is priceless to me. Teachers can never underestimate the power they have to show their students that anything is possible with hard work, determination and a dream.

Next in the Series Moira talks about following her instinct and intuition. absolutely fabulous read! Look for that post on Wednesday

For more information: Sheeaun Academy Of Irish Dance || We Believe In A Supportive, Positive Atmosphere So Our Students Feel Motivated And Confident!.

Also in the series: Sheeaun Academy Part 1 | thehouseoftrue.

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