I’d like to check out some Irish dance on my next trip to Ireland. What are your tips?

I’d like to check out some Irish dance on my next trip to Ireland....

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Posted Mon 27 Mar 2023 8:37 AM
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The term Irish dance refers to various traditional dance forms which originated on the island of Ireland. Irish dancing has evolved over the centuries, but it remains a both widely competitive sport and a fun social activity, so you’ll have a lot of options when it comes to finding some Irish dance to watch. There are also many fun and supportive classes for beginners, so why not take the plunge and learn a few steps, even if it’s just so that you can show off at the local pub! 

We’ll start with places you can go to watch some Irish dancing. Johnnie Fox’s Irish Dancing Hooley Show offers an unforgettable Irish dance and music experience and a four-course dinner. It’s located in Glencullen on the outskirts of County Dublin, and the evening’s itinerary is as follows: a delicious meal, then live traditional Irish music followed by the spectacular Irish dancing show you’ve been waiting for. The band then return for the second part of their show to finish off the night. Times vary throughout the week and you must make a reservation online. 

Another opportunity to watch some Irish dancing can be found at The Church in Dublin city. Along with being a café, bar and restaurant, The Church offers live traditional music and dance shows from 7pm every Sunday to Thursday. This event alone is completely free, but you have the option to “dine during the performance” too. Groups of less than 10 can avail of their walk-in service, and groups of 10-plus are encouraged to make a reservation online to guarantee availability. 

If those shows have inspired you and you’re ready to learn the art, Céili by the Lee run Irish dancing lessons every Thursday in Cork city. For a small admission fee, the classes are accessible to people aged 18+ in the Crane Lane Theatre which has a huge dancefloor and refreshments available to purchase. At the beginning of the night, Céili by the Lee covers the basic steps, then later they use those steps to get everyone dancing together. Beginners are always welcome. 

Who better to learn Irish dancing from than a former lead dancer of Riverdance? The Irish Dance Experience is hosted by Siobhan Manson in County Galway. A €30 admission fee will allow you to watch some Irish dance and learn the unique history, as well as the all-important steps. Group discounts are available, and no prior experience is required. The Irish Dance Experience’s website recommends that you bring a camera so that you can document your new talents! 

Last but not least, for toe-tapping fun which might just turn into a full-blown Irish jig, visit Fibber Magee in Belfast, County Antrim. Fibber Magee is one of the most renowned pubs for Irish folk music. With a great atmosphere and fantastic traditional live music featuring fiddles, pipes and bodhráns, you’re guaranteed to want to get up and dance! Check Fibber Magee’s website for information on who is playing throughout the week, but it shouldn’t matter as they say that “the craic is guaranteed 7 nights a week!” This is the perfect place to let your hair down and fully appreciate how enjoyable Irish dance can be. 

Does our community know of any great spots for Irish dancing?
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Posted Wed 10 Jan 2024 12:58 PM
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That sounds like a wonderful musical experience.

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