04 July 2006

Colin Dunne, part 1

I’m home from the Colin Dunne thing at Tir Na nOg, which was great fun. Liz and I went, got there much earlier than needed (as usual), and scored free drinks for our trouble. If only we’d managed free refills as well...

Anyhow, Colin seems like a great guy - funny, articulate, and interesting. Also, thank God, really well versed on dance and all that’s going on with Irish dance today. He had some interesting comments on the insane focus on competition to the exclusion of musicianship in some schools, and wasn’t shy about saying how much he dislikes that approach. I’m pleased to say that my school, Inis Cairde, has a great balance between dancing for dancing’s sake and preparing us for competitions.

In addition to talking and answering questions, he also showed us a really fun program he did for ITV (I think it was) in the UK, “Dancing at the Depot.” In it, he had 2 weeks to teach six bus drivers how to do Irish dancing. Think “The Full Monty” with clothes. Some were great, some OK, and others (poor Dean!) were just lucky to get through it. If you ever have a chance to see the show, do.

Liz and I got silly with the camera - below you can see Colin’s beer, which he switched to after declaring the Guinness you see in the picture above “awful.”

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