If you’re a fan of Irish dancing, then “Rhythm of the Dance” at Centrepointe Theatre on Wednesday, March 21 is not to be missed. With St. Patrick’s Day just before, this is a fun way to celebrate. There’s more than world-class Irish dancing: “Rhythm of the Dance” also features a traditional Irish band and the rich vocals of the Young Irish Tenors. Producer Kieran Cavanagh started the original dance troupe in 1998 and they’ve been going strong ever since. “I was asked to start a dance troupe to accompany the National Concert Orchestra of Ireland on a tour of America,” says Cavanagh. “And here we are, amazingly, still touring 40 weeks of the year and coming up to our 20th anniversary.” The troupe has toured around the world, including Russia, Taiwan, Romania, Serbia and Egypt. They even performed a live millennium New Year’s Eve television special in China to an audience of one billion viewers. “I love how music can bring different nations and cultures together,” says Cavanagh, “and we’re really looking forward to providing an electrifying performance for Ottawa.”
“Riverdance” popularized Irish dancing many years ago and audience enthusiasm has continued to grow. Cavanagh says that “Rhythm of the Dance” is set apart from “Riverdance” by keeping their performances a bit more traditional. “We take the audience on a trip around Ireland for two hours,” says Cavanagh. “They’ll leave the theatre with a strong impression of Irish culture and music, especially since the live band uses traditional instruments like the Uileann pipes, Bodhran drum and whistles. As well, the dancers perform rich, historical dances like the Celtic Step and Sean nós, which in Irish means ‘old-style’.” The Young Irish tenors provide powerful and vivid songs of Ireland and as Cavanagh points out, a much-needed break for the dancers.
Whether it’s a soft-shoe dance number or the rhythmic tapping of a hard-shoe dance, the vigor and dynamism of the dancers is non-stop. Cavanagh believes that audiences leave feeling invigorated by the dancers. “I know it’s frantic, but it is fun to watch,” he says. “Once they get warmed up prior to a performance, the rest just comes naturally, and they have fun as well.”
For an evening of energetic Irish dancing, along with the passion of Irish music and songs, head to Centrepointe Theatre and enjoy an Irish experience through “Rhythm of the Dance” on Wednesday, March 21. For ticket information visit www.centrepointetheatres.com.