Keltic Dreams win President Obama’s heart
African American and Hispanic Irish dancers make history at the White House
He said “Hi guys how’s it going” and the First Lady said “I love your costumes”, of course that made our day as I said “ Oh it was worth every minute of work to hear you say that”. The First Lady sat beside me and the President beside one of the children named Crystal. She turned to him and said “ It is a pleasure to meet you Mr. President” and he said “ it is a pleasure to meet you too, I hear you are going to perform for us tonight”. A few more words were exchanged and they shook hands with the children. You can’t imagine how proud I was of the children as they looked into the First Lady’s and Presidents eyes as they shook hands.
It was every teachers dream. I thanked them both for inviting us and we all left the room and went straight up to our main performance in the East room. The children told me that they had seen Sasha and Malia through a door playing with Bo. That was another huge highlight for them.
As the children lined up in the Green room, which opened on to The East room, I could just feel the excitement, from each of them. This was it, the moment we had dreamed of and we each had to give it all we had. From my perspective we were going to show how powerful Irish culture has been on these children’s lives and how it has spread so far across the waters to children from African American and Latino backgrounds enough that it has not only brought them to perform for The President of Ireland in 2007 but now to their own President of The United States.
He would see the impact it had and the children would forever believe that a dream really does come true if you work hard enough and believe in it. I knew that they would take this with them forever!! Above all we wanted to make all our supporters proud, Irish, Irish American and every single person standing there that day.
Dancing in The East room with these incredible children who constantly believed that they could do it, who never gave up on the dream, some of whom came from their middle schools and High schools to come to Irish dance practice every day was one of the greatest moments of my life.
Meeting with the President and First Lady will forever be the perfect moment in our minds. I could not have asked for more as a teacher for these children. It was the experience of a lifetime and I will forever be grateful for all our supporters, all the people who constantly gave kind words of encouragement since I founded the program six years ago. Those kind words constantly remind me how special The Keltic Dreams are and really encourage me to do the best I can with the children when we hit those many obstacles along the way.
May this story remind you that anything is possible, never ever give up on a dream, Keltic or otherwise because as I constantly remind the children that with hard extreme work and believing you can do it, you really can accomplish anything."