Dancing My Own Irish Dance Choreography At A Feis

01.10.12

I have been Irish dancing for many years and I have always enjoyed learning new steps created by the TCRG instructors at the Shelley School, but recently the most exciting aspect of Irish dance to me is coming up with and dancing my own choreography. I'm not one to boast that my steps are better than the ones I've learned from TCRGs, but at the same time I believe I dance better when I'm performing my own choreography.

The way I see it, a TCRG who has an entire school of dancers to think about doesn't have time to give any one student enough special attention to recognize which steps show off their natural talents and which steps that particular student simply has not mastered yet. When I'm making up a dance, I already know which steps show my strengths and which ones don't. There are some moves that I find incredibly easy and others I struggle with. If I make up the dance myself, I can choreograph a dance that shows off only my best moves.

Don't get me wrong, I truly enjoy learning choreography taught to me by certified TCRGs and I will continue to work hard to master the steps they teach me. When I'm in class, that is the time to focus on stretching myself, trying out things I can't do yet and pushing myself to become better than I am. But when I'm in front of an audience for any reason, that is NOT the time to experiment with moves I don't do well. I have decided that from now on when I compete at a feis or perform solos for a small show, I am only going to dance steps that show off my strengths.

I really want to win an Open championship competition this year. In order to do so, I need to give the judges the best I've got. I've come up with some really fun choreography for the next feis and I'm excited to see how well I do when I give the judges a chance to see all my best moves. Even if I lose, at least I'll know when I got on that stage I didn't hold anything back. I'll know I gave them the best I've got.

Article written by Shelly Allen
Photo by Shelly Allen Photography.

TAGS: irish, dance, Ireland, choreography, judge, feis, best, moves, steps, dancing, folk, celtic, competition, feiseanna, class, TCRG, Shelley, school, strengths, weaknesses, difficulty, show, create

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