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Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers

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Rating: 5

This is a family-oriented, performance-only Irish dance school. I've been dancing here for 3 years, and I couldn't be happier with Rinceoiri! There's a wide range of ages (preK-grandparents) and experience levels. Most everyone is friendly and willing to help, and the teachers are typically pretty easy-going, but good at pinpointing trouble spots and giving practical exercises and drills (often the drills are *very* effective, and you really know it the next day. RDS is also known as "Ben's Kickbutt Gym").

There is a focus on personal improvement (polishing technique, learning and perfecting new steps and dances), but most of the dances we do are heavily team-based. No solo pieces. There's a mix of very traditional (St. Patrick's Day) and more contemporary (new choreography set to Lord of the Dance music) (plus the odd German techno song for drills).

Costumes are simple and relatively inexpensive, and you only need one. (Plus, no wigs!) Hardshoes and ghillies (for girls) required once you graduate from beginner.

There are many degrees of skill even within the performance group. The people who know a dance better happily help out the people who are just learning it, and I've always felt totally comfortable asking for help from anybody. The teachers also choreograph certain dances so that sections are designed for different skill levels.

If you're looking for rigorous practice and critical instructors who drive you to become a champion, this is the wrong school for you. If you're looking for a fun atmosphere with people who love dance and traditional Irish culture, and like to perform in the community, I highly recommend RDS.