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Irwin School of Irish Dancing


The Irwin School of Irish Dancing was started in Calgary in 1985 under the direction of Finnuala Irwin, who has now been joined by daughters Andrea Jardine and Sarah Groenewoud and also former dancers Kelly McCabe and Cathy Sobieski.

For over 20 years, when not honing their skills at local, national and international competitions, the dancers have been busy entertaining Calgarians and communities across Alberta. Through the Folk Arts Council they were involved in the opening ceremonies for the Winter Olympics, half-time celebrations at the Grey Cup game and Canada Day celebrations, all here in Calgary.

Since the popularity of “Riverdance” the demand for the strong rhythmic skills of traditional Irish dancers has grown worldwide. Dancers from the Irwin school have gone on to perform with shows such as “Riverdance”, “Lord of the Dance”, and the “Trinity Irish Dance Show’. Locally the dancers have performed at a variety of shows including Charity fund-raising events, Globalfest, Zoolights, Senior residences and many private functions. One of our most memorable invitations was in 1998 when the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra invited us to join them on stage with conductor Richard Hayman. Our male dancer from this performance went on to dance the lead in “Riverdance” for a 10th Anniversary show at Radio City Music Hall in New York, 2005.

The Irwin Irish Dancers are excited and honored to be invited back to dance with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.

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