Dancers from Fitness Arts Center will demonstrate and teach movements in Irish dance at the library session. (CONTRIBUTED)
Dancers from Fitness Arts Center will demonstrate and teach movements in Irish dance at the library session. (CONTRIBUTED)

Archived Story

Irish dancing sashays to Madison Public Library

Published 4:50pm Thursday, June 20, 2013

MADISON – Madison’s own version of “Riverdance” may result from a class by Fitness Arts Center at Madison Public Library.

Brandan Newman from Fitness Arts Center will lead the program on July 13 from 10 to 11 a.m. All ages and genders are welcome to attend.

“Irish dancing, popularized in 1994 by the world-famous show ‘Riverdance,’ is notable for its rapid leg and foot movements, with the body and arms being kept largely stationary,” youth service librarian Mandy Pinyan said.

Newman will give an informative talk about Irish dance and show participants the traditional shoes and costumes that dancers wear. “Brandan will give a free class,” Pinyan said. “Her dancers will perform several dances, and then lead participants in basic steps, culminating into a short group dance.”

Irish dance is a group of the country’s traditional dance forms. The dance can be classified in the broad divisions of social dance and performance dances, Pinyan said.

Irish social dances can be divided into ceili (or formations) and set dancing. Ceili dances involve two to 16 people. Along with the formations, significant stylistic differences exist between two forms of social dance, she said.

“Irish social dance is a living tradition. These dancers have varying customs for their specific dance movements,” Pinyan said. Occasionally, the dances are changed or new choreography is added.

“Irish set dances are known as quadrilles, with four couples dancing while arranged in a square,” Pinyan said.

Fitness Arts Center’s address is 312 Palmer Road. For more information, call 1-877-360-3690, email to info@fitnessartscenter.com or visit fitnessartscenter.com.

Space is limited for this session. Individuals can sign up at the library, 130 Plaza Blvd., or call 256-461-0046. For more library information, email to mpinyan@hmcpl.org.

Editor's Picks