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Irish dancers staged for Holywood return


Holywood is to host Northern Ireland’s Irish Dancing Championships for the second year running.

The ‘festival dance’ event, taking place in Priory Integrated College in Holywood, opens this Friday, May 6 and continues throughout the weekend to Sunday, May 8 — with dancers from the age of 6 to 28 competing for the coveted NI Championship titles.

Denise Catney, chair of the NI Irish Dancing Championships Association told the Community Telegraph: “The championships promise to offer the very best of the province’s dancing elite, when over 30 schools compete for the top accolades across a wide range of age categories.

“And because Festival Irish Dancing is unique to Northern Ireland, we would encourage more people to come and witness the spectacle for themselves.”

‘Festival Dance’ is a specialised form of Irish Dancing, which can be traced back to the 1950s when the celebrated dance teacher and choreographer, Patricia Mulholland, broke away from the Irish Feis movement to offer Irish dance to performers on both sides of the community.

Moving away from the pageantry sometimes associated with the ‘Feis’ style, the form focuses on the individuality of each dancer’s style of movement and appearance.

The competition will bring together around 300 young people from different backgrounds and will offer audiences the chance to watch some of the highest standards of dancing the country has to offer.

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Tickets can be bought at the door and are priced at £3 for adults; concession (including children) £1.50.

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