|Owen Barrington |
Photo: Levi Nilsson of Apogee Studios in Anchorage, AK
Feis America: How old are you now, and when did you start Irish dance?
Barrington: I just turned 27 years old and I started my Irish dancing adventure at the relatively late age of 12. I didn’t compete at my first feis though until I was 15 because I was learning to dance in my hometown of Anchorage, Alaska and we did not have a certified instructor for several years.
Feis America: Do you think starting later, as an older kid, gave you an advantage or disadvantage in competitive Irish dance?
Barrington: Generally, I feel that if I had started earlier in Irish dance it probably would have been more of an advantage. But for my circumstances at the time, I was a bit more mature and focused and it was only about 3 years before I started competing, so if I had been dancing a lot longer before getting to compete I might have burned out early. Now I look back and see that things happened the way they were meant to in order for me to have accomplished what I have in dance. My message to the rest of the male Irish dance community is it’s generally better to started earlier, but really it all depends on how focus your are and how much you want to commit to dancing that will determine how far you will go.
Feis America: What Irish dance school or schools have you trained with?
Barrington: When I first started dancing, my dance school was called the Irish Dance Academy of Alaska (formally the Keegan-Dance School of Irish Dance). At the time it was non-competitive, but in the year 2000 we hired Tony Comerford to fly up regularly and teach so we could finally attend feisanna. I danced for the Tony Comerford School from then until the end of my competitive career in 2008.
Video interview with Owen in 2007- fabulous footwork:
Feis America: Have you thought about taking the exams to be a TCRG (aka certified teacher with An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha)?
Barrington: I actually just recently took and passed my TCRG examination. Gaining my TCRG has always been a goal of mine because I love teaching and passing along this great tradition of dance that I find so character building and life enriching. Eventually I would like to try for my ADCRG (aka certified adjudicator with An Comisiun le Rince Gaelacha) for the exact same reasons.
|2005 Riverdance photo|
Nicholas Yenson, Owen, Scott Doherty, and Kevin Horton