About Irish Dance

What is Irish Dancing?

Informed by history, always evolving.

At its core, modern Irish Dance is the evolution of the traditional dance form of the people of Ireland. Crafted over centuries, the dance developed in direct partnership with the traditional music of Ireland. As with all human endeavors, the dance form has been influenced by the creativity of its practitioners, which has evolved into its current dynamic, rhythmic, expressive, and explosive nature we see today. Our organizations have endeavored to honor the traditions of Irish Dance, while allowing creativity to continuously push the boundaries of human capability. Our team dancing and music continue to be traditionally based, but are always influenced by the possibilities of new sounds generated by new instruments and inspirations. Our solo dancing exists within the prescribed traditional framework, yet is allowed to evolve and be influenced by other dance forms, while honoring traditional elements.

About Irish Dance

Art & Sport

Irish Dance is a living, breathing, athletic art form, incorporating elegance and rhythm in a unique combination that is as breathtaking in its beauty as it is uplifting in its precision and percussive sound. Irish Dance is accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds for the simplicity of its steps and with the support of its music. Dancers who participate in Irish Dance for a period of time develop as much strength and endurance as any top-tier athlete, which enhances the art form through increased agility, intricacy of choreography, stamina for longer performances, strength for explosive lift, and extension for an incredible range of motion. Modern Irish dancing seamlessly incorporates athleticism and tradition to produce a vibrant art form that is truly unique.

About Irish Dance

Globalization, Culture, & History

The globalization of Irish culture through Irish dance and Irish music began with the worldwide immigration of the Irish people. The Irish brought their traditions to the four corners of the globe and actively shared their culture with their new neighbors. Irish dance and music have also influenced other dance forms, including clogging, square dancing, and country music here in North America, for hundreds of years. The most recent globalization and explosion in interest in Irish Dance around the world began in the late 1990’s with the unprecedented success of touring shows led by “Riverdance” and “Lord of the Dance.” The phenomenon has continued for over 20 years, driven by a public mesmerized by the unique combination of traditional Irish music with the expressive, dynamic, and percussive nature of dance. The more recent successes of the touring shows have introduced the world to the modern and athletic nature of our art and expelled any preconceived notions this is an outdated dance form, allowing its evolution to be broadcasted widely for the masses to see.

About Irish Dance

Irish Dance in North America

Irish dance in North America has closely paralleled the expansion of Irish dance worldwide. With a large Irish immigration population in North America, Irish dance and music have always been a way for immigrants and their descendants to maintain a connection to Ireland. However, over the past 30 years, and as a direct result of the successes of the Irish dance touring shows, Irish dance has become mainstream in North America attracting dancers of all ages and ethnic backgrounds. This diversity, combined with North American creativity and work ethic, has propelled North America to the pinnacle of success in the Irish dance world. Strength has built on strength, and Irish Dance is now offered in almost every state in America as well broadly throughout Canada, with record growth in Mexico.

Getting Started

Irish Dancing Today

Irish Dance today enjoys broad mainstream support by countless people with no direct connection to Ireland. The sheer joy and magic created by the unique combination of Irish music and Irish Dance has influenced an ever growing audience of people to embrace this unique art form and try it for themselves. Irish Dance is likely accessible in your local area, and trying it out for yourself is the best way to experience the thrill and challenge of this exciting dance form, as well as the welcoming nature of the Irish culture.