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Gall-Tír dance group promotes Irish dancing in the Czech Republic

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Gabriela Klášterková, adult Irish dancer with 
Gall-Tír dance group in The Czech Republic
Photo: courtesy 
Gabriela Klášterková
 "I think I can say that at least every second or third Czech knows Irish dance, which is a great progress in my eyes."
~Gabriela Klášterková, adult Irish dancer.

Gabriela Klášterková is an adult Irish dancer, and co-founder of the Gall-Tír dance group in the Czech Republic. She and her husband, Jan, founded the school in Prague. 

Christy Dorrity:  How did your love of Irish dance begin?
Gabriela: More than 10 years ago, I had a friend who danced in one of very few dance groups, because Irish dance had just come to our country at that time. It took some time before I decided to try it, and result? My friend Katy stopped after 2 or 3 years, and I have been going on through many injuries, and other problems until today. I think it changed my life maybe more than I realize.

Christy Dorrity:  Is Irish dance popular in the Czech Republic?  How are you received when you perform?


Gabriela: It is very young form of dance in my country. Czech people started learning very first steps approximately 15 years ago. "The teacher" had been a very kind Irish lady working at the British Council who danced a few basic steps, and some ceilí dances, and was willing to share it with people excited to learn.

Gabriela Klášterková, adult Irish dancer with 
Gall-Tír dance group in The Czech Republic
Photo: courtesy 
Gabriela Klášterková
Since then, Irish dance is becoming more, and more famous every  year. Really huge work has been done by the shows like The Lord of The Dance, Riverdance, and later Gaelforce Dance, as well that started having their performances here regularly after 2000.

I think I can say that at least every second or third Czech knows Irish dance, which is a great progress in my eyes.

Our performances are received extremely positively. Even people who look bored at the very beginning are coming to us after our show, impressed and amazed, to praise us.


Christy Dorrity:  Do you teach adults? Do they fit in well with your dance school and community?
Gabriela Klášterková, and husband Jan, 
qualifying for World's.
Photo: courtesy 
Gabriela Klášterková

Gabriela: Yes, I do! The Irish dance group Gall-Tír that I and my husband founded, have still been leading mostly of adults. Adults in my country usually have no problem with community. They all fit in well before the steps start to be harder. We have to demand harder work from them in case that they wanted to achieve higher. 

Christy Dorrity:  Where do you perform and/or compete?

Gabriela: I and my Irish dance group, Gall-Tír, perform usually in The Czech Republic. We have not tried to arrange any performance abroad yet because we are absolutely focused on competitions. We, of course, would not refuse a nice offer, but we do not look for it now.

A few years ago my husband, I,  and a friend had a performance in an Irish pub (my husband qualified for The World Championship that year), and I think this experience was probably more exciting for us then for the audience. However, they were  surprised that someone from the middle of Europe, living far away from them can dance their "national treasure" so well.

We are used to participating in all the Europian feiseanna,  especially those closer to Prague,  like our own Prague Feis. We have been at London Feis,  The World´s in Dublin, and Belfast, and my husband also at The All Ireland´s and The Great Britain´s.

Christy Dorrity:  Why do you think Irish dance is popular all over the world?
Gabriela Klášterková, adult Irish dancer with 
Gall-Tír dance group in The Czech Republic
Photo: courtesy 
Gabriela Klášterková

Gabriela: It is just magnificent! Definitely! I think it is really noble, and elegant dance but also unbelievably difficult, and everyone can see this paradox. You work like an athlete for the Olympic Games but you have to look like an elegant dancer flying somewhere above the dance floor, obviously using no effort. Even people knowing nothing about any form of dance can appreciate Irish dance and we very often hear the people who had never been interested it dance in general say, "Wow, this has really got me!"

Christy Dorrity:  What do you envision for the future of Irish dance?
Gabriela Klášterková, adult Irish dancer, with her husband, Jan.
Photo: courtesy Gabriela Klášterková

Gabriela: That it will spread more and more, it will be more popular, everyone will know it, and many people will do it. This is my belief, and my wish to all irish dancers as well! Irish dance undoubtedly has a future, and we do our best to be a part of this al,l and to be the ones who help Irish dance to penetrate the public awareness.

Christy Dorrity:  Are you currently working toward any shows or competitions?

Gabriela: Yes I am, and so are all the dancers I teach. The qualification for The World´s 2013 in Salzburg is coming (in November 2012) . This is my husband and my closest goal!

Christy Dorrity:  What is the best part of Irish dancing, for you?

Gabriela: Everything! I cannot choose any part because only all of them together can make the final impression I love!!!

Thank you Gabriela.  Good luck to you as you prepare for upcoming events.


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Readers: Are you an adult Irish dancer, competitive or not, with a story to share? Would you like to inspire others to feel your passion for Irish dancing and culture? Do you have a question about Irish dancing? Please visit www.christydorrity.com

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