Riverdance is Back on Our Stage On May 16 & 17
A show that broke conventions and wowed the world
An article in The Express begins thus: “In less than seven minutes they did something that had never happened before in its 1,000-year-long history: they made Irish dancing sexy.”
The writer is referring to the 7-minute interval for the 1994 Eurovision Song Contest during which a dance was performed to music composed by Bill Whelan. It starred none other than Jean Butler and Michael Flatley.
When Riverdance first broke on to the theatre scene as a full show in 1995, it broke more conventions than anyone thought it could. On the Irish dance side, you had choreography that used arms, when traditional Irish dancing doesn’t. On the North American side, you had this phenomenal show that centered on folk dancing and, yes, made it look sexy.
Perhaps one of the most famous scenes from the entire show is this dance, called “Trading Taps,” which features Irish hard shoe and American tap dancers. You can see for yourself the differences between the two styles.
Michael Flatley was already a phenom before he hit the world stage. In 1989, at the age of 30, he set a Guinness World Record of producing 28 taps per second. Then, nine years later, in 1998, he set a new one: 35 taps per second. He still produces and also runs a dance academy.
Jean Butler actually quit Irish dance after her first few lessons when she was a child. Thankfully, she went back and eventually won a few world championships. She was 23 when she performed during the Eurovision interval.
Since then, Riverdance has gone on to perform in front of over 25 million people, in 46 countries on six continents. Over 3 billion people have watched it on TV, and 10 million have purchased it on video.
And now is your chance to be one of 2,000 at the Centre In The Square to see this world phenomenon live for two performances on May 16 & 17. Get your tickets now.