Irish Dance Manchester
Claddagh Association
Irish Dance Manchester

What we do in our weekly class

The class welcomes adults of any age and any level of ability including complete beginners. Newcomers are invited to join our class on the first Monday of any month, the first class is free and we welcome your feedback at the end of class. It is also appreciated if new members visit our website and leave us a review.

No special footwear is required at the beginning; soft flat, laced up shoes of any description are fine.

We concentrate mainly on two types of Irish dancing - Step dancing and Ceili dancing.

Step dancing - this is what most people think of as the ‘Riverdance’ style of dancing. It involves dances in both 'light' and 'heavy' shoes and includes dances such as the reel, the jig, the slip jig, the heavy reel, hornpipe etc. Step dance teaching is undertaken by many class members as we have many years of Irish dancing experience under our collective belts!

Ceili dancing - we have a Ceili dance teacher, Christine Mathewson. Christine holds the TMRF teaching qualification and is a registered with An Coimisiun le Rinci Gaelacha (CLRG).

There are two types of Irish ceili dancing - Fior Ceili and Set Ceili. The Claddagh Association concentrates on Fior Ceili which is danced in light shoes and is more akin to step dancing as it draws on the same basic footwork. Ceili is a very sociable dance form in which all levels of dancers can participate.

The Irish Brush Dance - many years ago in Ireland men danced around a brush making up many and varied routines. There are a number of stories that explain why the brush dance became so popular in Ireland and most likely all of them have some element of truth. The Claddagh Association offer this dance form as an exhibition dance.

What we can offer for exhibition purposes

Members of the Claddagh Association are happy to give demonstrations at social events in order to promote the enjoyment of Irish dancing in a wider audience.

  • Demonstrations:
  • We can offer demonstrations of any, or a mixture, of the dancing styles mentioned above. Irish dancing is quite an energetic activity so our step dancing performances usually last no more than 15 minutes.

  • Demonstrations and ceili for your guests:
  • If required we can do a mixture of a dancing exhibition and then include a section for audience participation where one of our members will ‘call’ some ceili dances allowing your guests to participate, so extending the enjoyment.

  • Ceili only:
  • If you do not want a dancing exhibition but would like a Ceili for all your guests to join in the dances, Christine our registered ceili teacher is happy to discuss this with you.

What to do if you would like us to dance at your event

Please come to our Monday evening class and see what we do before making a booking. The Irish World Heritage Centre, Manchester has a lovely bar and you are welcome to come and have a drink and relax whilst watching some of our Monday evening class. You can then decide whether our dance form is what you require at your function. Following this, one of our Social Secretaries will be happy to discuss the details with you and make the booking.

You can read more about us in the:

Claddagh Association