Mastering Hornpipe and Reel for Crossroads Feis to Prepare for Oireachtas

Article featured in Diddlyi Magazine.

Now that I’m in Open Championship, my new focus for the next few months will be the Western Region Oireachtas this November. It will be my first Regional competition. I’ve done my share of Feiseanna for sure, but now I’d like to see how I do at an Oireachtas.

The most difficult thing about this for me is that an Oireachtas pre-determines which dances you are to compete. I have been mastering the Treble Jig and Slip Jig the past year and the 20 and over womens competition in November requires me to compete a Hornpipe and Reel. So after the Boise Feis two weeks ago, I let go of the Jigs and am now focusing on all new steps. On top of this, Tina Shelley told me to go ahead and use the Open Championship competition at the Provo Crossroads Feis in a week and a half to practice my new dances in front of a judge.

So I’ll be going into practice early, running through my steps during stretch times, and staying after dance company practice on weekends to make sure I know my steps well before the Feis. I don’t know if I’ve ever switched out my steps so soon before a Feis so I’m feeling the stress.

On the other hand, it is a lot of fun to have all new steps. I don’t know about anyone else, but for me, when a dance is new to me I find it exciting and can therefore dance is better once I have the sequence down. Older steps are harder to continue dancing with enthusiasm since the steps aren’t as new and exciting to me anymore. They are easier to remember but not as fun to execute.

If I dance the Hornpipe and Reel well at the Crossroads Feis it will definitely give me the confidence I’ll need to compete them at the Oireachtas. Wish me luck!

TAGS: hornpipe, reel, crossroads, feis, oireachtas, prepare, practice, master

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