Yes. The Walsh Kelley School of Irish Dancing located at 1211 44th Street, behind the Two Wheeler Dealer and Double Happiness (www.walshkelleyschool.com).
The Walsh Kelley School has been in Wilmington for three years. It also has locations in Greensboro and Charlotte.
It was founded by Áine Walsh Kelley of Cork, Ireland. Kelley, of Charlotte, is one of only a few Irish dancers in the state certified to teach by the Irish Dancing Teacher’s Association of North America and An Coimisun le Rince Gaelacha, Dublin, Ireland, the governing bodies of Irish dancing.
The Walsh Kelley School in Wilmington offers traditional hard shoe and soft shoe classes in five of the six official levels of Irish dancing (beginner, advanced beginner, novice, prizewinner and championship). A handful of Walsh Kelley dancers of the Wilmington studio take the classes for fun and for the culture, however the majority compete in national competitions called a feis (pronounced “fesh”, plural feiseanna), which means “festival” in Irish.
“They have them all around the U.S. and the world. You are judged by certified judges who have been certified in Ireland and you have to place so many times to move up to the next level,” said Rhonda Adams, head of Wilmington’s Walsh Kelley school.
Adams explains Irish dancing has four different types of music and each has different signature steps that go along with each set of music. It’s not ballet, it’s not clogging, she says, all Irish dancing movements are made from the waist down.
“It’s keeping your carriage center and arms down, its high cardio. It’s ranked in the top three for cardio for all sports,” said Adams.
Contact Rhonda Adams for Wilmington class information at 910-202-4752.
There is also an Irish Dance Club at UNCW. (http://appserv02.uncw.edu/studentorgs/organization.aspx?orgid=294)
And Inspirations Dance Centre at 7969 River Rd. in Southport (910-612-7441) offers Irish step dance classes.
Did we miss any Irish dance opportunities? Let us know in the Comments section below.
Date posted: March 22, 2013
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