Festival firsts: bringing a dramatic Belfast style to America

On May 12–14, 2017, the Festival Dance Teachers Association (FDTA) held their first North American workshop in Galloway, New Jersey.

FDTA instructors Deborah Anderson of the Zephaniah Dancers and Elizabeth Lynn of the Seven Towers School of Irish Dancing shared their choreography, technique, and humor throughout the weekend. Their American students included dancers and teachers from Connecticut, New Jersey, and Illinois.

Festival dancing, a Northern Ireland specialty, has been enjoying a boost in popularity due to appearances on Jigs & Wigs as well as the Innova Irish Dance Company’s success on Britain’s Got Talent. Lauren Smyth has also become the first Festival-style Irish dancer to earn the principal female lead role in Riverdance. This has not gone unnoticed in America. Continue…