Premier School for Professional Dance Instruction

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What is Irish Dance?

Irish dancing or Irish dance is a group of traditional dance forms originating in Ireland which can broadly be divided into social dance and performance dances. Irish social dances can be divided further into ceili and set dancing. Irish set dances are quadrilles, danced by four couples arranged in a square, while ceili dances are danced by varied formations (ceili) of two to sixteen people. In addition to their formation, there are significant stylistic differences between these two forms of social dance. Irish social dance is a living tradition, and variations in particular dances are found across the Irish dancing community.

irish2Stepdancing as a modern form is descended directly from old-style step dancing. There are several different forms of stepdancing in Ireland. Irish stepdancing is primarily done in competitions, public performances or other formal settings.

Dutchess School of Performing Arts is so excited to be able to offer Traditional Irish Dance with Leighann Kowalsky. This is not a “competition Irish” class. Leighann’s primary focus is the technique and movements of traditional Irish Step.

Those dancers looking to improve their leg, foot and ankle strength in preparation for hard shoe, will also be interested in the Introduction to Pointe class. More information on this class can be found on the ballet page. Check the Class Schedule page for class times.