Dance

Since the introduction of Riverdance about two decades ago, interest in Irish dance has exploded. The wide variety of Irish dance schools we have in Minnesota teach nearly 1,000 kids and adults how to dance jigs, reels, hornpipes and much more. At least five adult groups regularly perform year-round throughout the state.

At the Irish Fair of Minnesota, we like to showcase all these schools, groups and dancers. From toddlers learning their first steps to accomplished dancers pounding out explosive rhythms with their feet, you can see performances throughout the fair in the Dance Tent.

 

2018 Dance School Participants:

Casey Academy of Irish Dance
Casey Academy of Irish Dance is a small performance dance school located in the Twin Cities. We strive to combine a contemporary style with a traditional art form, Irish step dancing. As a family inspired school we want everyone to have the opportunity to be enriched with Irish culture. We offer discounted classes for siblings and did we mention boys dance free? For more information you can go to the website listed above or email emily.caseyhare@gmail.com.

Corda Mór Irish Dance
Corda Mór is celebrating 11 years dancing and performing at the Irish Fair! Corda Mor recently opened their own dance studio in Edina, where dancers can come to train for competitions, performances, or just for fun. Corda Mor means “great heart” and that’s something you see in the dancers, teachers, and families in the Corda Mor community; they look forward to sharing that “great heart” with you right now!

Eilís Academy at Escalate
Eilís (Ay-lish) Academy was founded in 2012 at Escalate Dance studio in Maple Grove. We are now located in Osseo and have grown to 50 dancers age 5 on up with dancers of all levels and abilities Directed by Liz Hines, a part of the Twin Cities Irish dance community for over 20 years is credentialed through An Coimisiun in Dublin Ireland. Eilis Academy hopes to inspire joy of dance in their dancers while instilling the discipline and determination required to succeed in the sport! 

Green Fire Irish Dancers
For 15 years Green Fire Irish Dancers has performed contemporary hard and soft shoe steps and choreographies as well as traditional and historic dances from the early 1800's - early 1900's done in authentic period costume.  We also teach easy dances for audience participation.  Children, teens and adults practice and perform together.  Based in friendship and cooperation rather than competition, Green Fire strives to give all dancers the opportunity to pursue their dreams. Please contact Green Fire at greenfiredancers@gmail.com

Knocknagow Irish Dancers
Knocknagow Irish Dancers are based in Minneapolis/St.Paul area of Minnesota. Active in the Twin Cities since 1985, Knocknagow dances traditional Ceili and Set dances. Many of their dancers have background in Irish step dancing and have studied Sean Nos. Both styles are incorporated into their performaces and choreographies.

Mactír Academy of Irish Dance
Mactír Academy of Irish Dance (meaning Wolf Academy of Irish Dance) offers both competitive and performance based classes with a focus on precision, teamwork, and grace. Mactír strives to be the premiere team-based competition school in Minnesota, where dancers and families choose their own journey. Whether that is going to a couple feiseanna (competitions) a year, performing with local and international bands, or competing in the Irish Dance World Championships. Our dancers celebrate this exquisite art form in a variety of settings and spread the joy of Irish Dance to everyone they meet. Mactír Academy is thrilled to have performed at the nation’s largest free Irish Festival since 2014!

Mooncoin Ceili Dancers
The excitement of Irish dance is mainly in the legs and feet, with quick, graceful movements or vigorous battering steps carrying dancers though the complex, often geometrically patterned dances. Irish ceili and set dance are forms of dance that have traditionally been practiced socially. These are the dances that have brought people together for celebrations of all kinds throughout Irish history. Mooncoin Ceili Dancers honor these traditional dances, while infusing them with a modern performance spirit. We also create new dances in the ceili and set styles, demonstrating that all traditions are living, growing, constantly evolving entities that bring many and varied meanings into the lives of those who share them.

Mulhern School of Irish Dance
The Mulhern School of Irish Dance offers lessons in Eden Prairie, MN and in the Chicago area. The school was established in 2001 by sisters Eileen Mulhern O'Kane and Coleen Mulhern Malloy, both accomplished dancers themselves who have trained with Irish dancing legends Pat Roche, Dennis & Margie Dennehey, and Michael Flatley. Mulhern expanded their school from Chicago up to the Twin Cities four years ago and trains both recreational and competitive dancers - Introductory Beginners up through Championship level including ceili team dancing. The school has earned Regional, National, and Great Britain Championship titles, and many World, All Ireland, All Scotland and British Nationals medals. This is Mulhern's third year participating at Irish Fair and we are delighted to be a part of this wonderful celebration of Irish culture, music and dance. We bring a range in level of dancers today, our 4 year olds up to 18 year olds, from beginners and first time performers to World Qualified dancers.

North Star Irish Dancers
North Star Irish Dance is a program offering Irish dance in a competition-free environment. Dancing in Eden Prairie and Northfield, NSID's strength is embracing dancers of various levels and customizing teaching styles to individual needs. NSID also frequently volunteers in the community as a part of their mission of Connecting to Community while Fostering Tradition.

O’Shea Irish Dance
O'Shea Irish Dance is led by director Cormac O'Sé T.C.R.G. (certified instructor with An Coimisiún Le Rinci Gaelacha), original cast member of Riverdance & native of Dublin, Ireland. Cormac comes from a deep pedigree with the legendary Scoil Rince Uí Shé of Dublin, Ireland, taught by his parents for the last 47 years. Cormac toured for six years with Riverdance, performing over 2000 performances, across four continents to over two million people. He can be seen in the original film, Riverdance, The Show and four other film productions.  Established in 2005, OID provides training for the demanding and technical art form of traditional and competitive Irish Step dance where dancers train as artists, musicians, and athletes. Teaching ages three to adult, OID instructors inform the whole dancer to train a healthy body in strength, flexibility, and fitness as well as a healthy mind in confidence, discipline, and performance.   OID's Minnesota dancers have achieved 9 Regional Solo Championship titles, 2 Regional Ceili Titles, 2 National Championship Titles and 6 top-ten placements in the World Championships bringing the only 2 world globes home to the state.  O’Shea Irish Dance features their dancers in performances throughout the year, and produces two professional, full-length theatrical shows annually at several Twin Cities venues, including Stepping Stone Theater, Chanhassen Dinner Theater, and the Fitzgerald Theater.

Rince na Chroi Irish Dancers
The Rince na Chroi Irish Dancers are a performance-based Irish dance school from St. Paul. Founded in 2003 by owner and director Katie Stephens Spangler, Rince na Chroi averages over 100 public performances throughout the year- and the Irish Fair of Minnesota is always a highlight! Rince na Chroi has over 200 dancers of all ages, and they accept students as young as three, up through adults. Their dancers perform year-round at venues and events all over the Twin Cities and the Midwest. Visit their website or find Rince na Chroi on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for more information.

Rince Nua Irish Dance
Rince Nua Irish Dance is an award-winning dance studio in Maple Grove that offers a year-round program for dancers ages 3 through adult. At Rince Nua, dancers explore Irish dance through a wide variety of classroom, performance, and competitive experiences. Owner, Erin Cooney is a certified Instructor (ODCRN) with Cumann Rince Náisiúnta, the National Dance Association based in Dublin, Ireland. As a member school of Cumann Rince Náisiúnta, Rince Nua’s dancers have had the opportunity to achieve greatness, having won top awards in both Team and Solo Competitions at the Regional, National, and World Championship level. Rince Nua’s semester-based program starts in September and May with new student information sessions held in August and April.

Saint Paul Irish Dancers
Founder of St. Paul Irish Dancers, Eileen Dahill, parlayed a 1993 Minnesota Folk Arts grant into establishing St. Paul Irish Dancers. St. Paul Irish Dancers is a hearty Irish Stew of step dancing, figure work, and choreography that has evolved to becoming a Minnesota gateway to Irish culture through dance. In celebrating their 20th year of Irish dance they are proudest of expanding performances regionally in the 5 state area. They are known for their collaborative percussive work with tap and flamingo artists and travel regionally with the Ring of Kerry Band. Some "pit stops" this year have included the Paramount Theater in St. Cloud, the Get Lucky half marathon, St. Paul Irish Dancer's annual show, the Rhythm in the River in Jackson, Minnesota and now at Irish Fair of Minnesota.

Shamrock School of Irish Step Dance
The Shamrock School of Irish Step Dance is one of the longest running schools in the Twin Cities and is a performance and competitive school with many accomplished dancers at all levels. Our school is steeped in Irish culture and tradition as our founder- May Kirmer Buckley was born in Dublin, Ireland and a prominent dancer at the Theater Royle in Dublin’s fair city that moved to the US in 1945 after marry a “a prominent American soldier and a good looking Yankee in a uniform!” A love of Irish Dance and of continuing to foster the perfection and a passion for this sport/art form is what our school is all about. We offer classes from 4 through college ages and are based in Eagan, MN. We love participating in the Irish Fair of Minnesota and welcome new students.