Hobart dancers get their jig on

HOBART Irish dancing school Scoil Rince ni Kelly recently returned from the Irish Dancing Australian National Championships in Canberra, posting some of its best results at the competition.

Scoil Rince ni Kelly has about 40 dancers ranging from the junior jiggers and competitive older kids to adults who are just doing it for a bit of fun.

As the only Irish dancing school in southern Tamsnaia, Scoil Rince ni Kelly principal teacher and owner Bronwyn Kelly said it was pleasing to see a small school of dedicated dancers compete at the top level.

“Just about every dancer hit a personal best with their placings and in the team events our under 10s got a third place, which was amazing, our under 12s got a second place, and the most exciting was when the under 15s backed it up with another third place out of 35 teams,” she said.

Ms Kelly said a number of her dancers posted excellent individual results.

This included Matilda Scott who placed 21st out of 86 in what was the largest section in the solo competition, Kelsie Wells who placed 21st in her section, and three of the under nine dancers who placed in the top 20.

“They would train with me three to four times a week and would be here for three hours each of those sessions,” Ms Kelly said.

“It’s a big commitment, but I think this year their commitment has absolutely shone through in their results.”

Ms Kelly said the competition was good for the dancers to set goals and try and achieve them, and also helped challenge her as a teacher.

“I just love watching the children start as beginners and develop over the years by setting their goals and accomplishing them – it’s quite fulfilling for me,” she said.

Ten-year-old Niamh Kelly-Anderson finished 13th out of 61 in the under nines solo.

“I like performing in front of people and Nationals made me want to practice all the time,” Niamh said.

“You make so many friends and it’s so fun.”

For 10-year-old Christian Barry, it was his first year at Nationals and he said it had motivated him to continue to improve.

“I thought it was good at Nationals to watch everyone else and see the level you should be at,” he said.

“I’m proud that I do Irish dancing, it’s so much fun.

“If someone else in the team gets a good place then it’s like the whole school gets the good place because we’re all really encouraging.”

The Tasmanian Festival of Irish Dancing will be held on 23 and 24 November at the Kingston High auditorium.

For more information, visit the Scoil Rince Ni Kelly Facebook page.

Caption: From left, Irish dancers Aisling Herbert, Ada Harrison Burnett, Niamh Auld, Christian Barry, Lynette Barry and Caitlyn Wells recently competed at the Irish Dancing Australian National Championships in Canberra.

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