The 2012 All Ireland Irish Dance Championships (Oireachtas Rince Na h'Eireann) are starting in just one day. The event will take place at Dublin's Citywest Hotel and will run from the 11th - 18th of February.
I feel a bit like an arm-chair fan sitting at home, getting ready to cheer for their favorite sports team or Olympic athlete. Instead of "Go, Manchester United!!", or "Go, Steelers!!", or even "Go, Jamaican Bobsled Team!!" (Can't be helped- ever since "Cool Runnings", I've had a thing for them), I find myself getting ready to cheer from afar for the Irish dancing boys, who I know or whose names I know as being the names of major contenders for top place Irish dance championship titles. These Irish dancing young men will be at the 2012 All Ireland Championships. "Go, Irish dance boys! WooHoo!"
I've already got my handy note paper by my computer. On it, I've jotted down the names and competitions of some favorite Irish dancing boys, who I know will be competing in Dublin, Ireland in just a day or a few short days. I'll be watching the recall list carefully and the results at the end of each day looking for names I might recognize. I've done a cheer or two from my computer chair in the past when results have come in from coverage of other major Irish dance championships. My kids know, in the next week or so, to expect an occasional, corny, happy dance from this mom when the boys and young men I'm watching do well. I can be very entertaining when that good news comes in.
-----------------Read more:A great post about four young men from North America that are title holders from last year's All Ireland ChampionshipsA slideshow of photos from the 2011 All Ireland Championships Irish dance All Ireland Dancing Championships coming soon to Dublin
So, one more day until I wait anxiously by my computer for scores, recalls, placements, live coverage, and even photos. One more day until I'm sitting on the sidelines, watching from afar as best I can to see how these talented Irish dancers fare.
If you're also waiting for results, here are three tips to keep you up to date:
~ Know the time difference. I already know the time difference between the Washington D.C. area and Dublin, Ireland. For anyone who doesn't already know, it's five hours later there than it is here. Dancers will be on the stages or stage-side bright and early every morning which can still be in the middle of the night or wee hours of the morning, if you're in the United States or Canada. If you don't know what the time difference is between where you are an Dublin, Ireland, just Google, "Time in Dublin". Seriously. It's that easy. By the time many in the U.S. will have had their coffee, the Irish dancers in Dublin at All Irelands will be well into their competition rounds or even done and anxiously waiting on whether or not they've recalled.
~ Get the "live" subscription from "On the Feis". If you are keeping track of several dancers who will be there, it is totally worth it to get the live streaming coverage and real-time results. Access to the 'LIVE' area costs £12 which is the same as about $19. The live area opens on the 10th of February and it'll include: live commentary, live coverage (this is of the awards and ceili competitions), interviews with dancers and TCRGs, full grid marks (wonderful for knowing how each judge scored a dancer and how close the marks are), and photos. "On The Feis" is the official partner of An Coimisiún le Rincí Gaelacha, to provide live event services for this year's All Ireland Irish Dance Championships. Also, keep checking back here for the latest coverage and results from Feis America.
~ Know the schedule for the competitions! Here's the schedule:
Saturday, 11th of February
Sunday, 12th of February
Sub Minor Ceili Under 11Monday, 13th of February
Minor Ceili and Figure Under 13
Tuesday, 14th of February
Boys 15-16Wednesday, 15th of February
Junior Ceili and Figure Under 16Thursday, 16th of February
Ladies 17–18Friday, 17th of February
Senior Ceili and Figure Over 16
Ceili Club Championships
Ceili Club 4 HandsSaturday, 18th of February
Ladies Over 21
Men Over 21
Marie Duffy Foundation New Musical Composition –
Performance of Choreography
I wish all of the Irish dancers the greatest of experiences at the 2012 All Ireland Championships. May you feel like you're "flying high" on that stage, and come off knowing you did the very best that you could. Dance your hearts out, and know that there are many, like me, cheering you on from afar.