\"Michael

Michael Flatley with his wife, Niamh O'Brien, in Ballymote, Co. Sligo Photo by: PA

Michael Flatley: 'Yankee Doodle Dandy'?

\"Michael

Michael Flatley with his wife, Niamh O'Brien, in Ballymote, Co. Sligo Photo by: PA

He's back and better than ever, and now that Michael Flatley has emerged as a network TV star thanks to his hosting the just-concluded NBC competition "Superstars of Dance," he's thinking ahead to his next big adventure.

It's hardly a surprise to hear that Michael is eyeing a return to the stage.

Though he carried out his hosting duties with aplomb, there's no doubt that the "Lord of the Dance" himself could have taught many of the dancers a thing or two about how to really perform, as he actually showed during his dance performance at the finale.

Back in training and, he says, in fighting shape, Michael is looking to do an updated remake of "Yankee Doodle Dandy."

"It's a perfect time. We have a new president; it's a new day. I love that number and love James Cagney, and certainly always admired George M. Cohan," Flatley said.

"America needs a real patriotic shot in the arm right now, and I think that would be priceless. I've got my eye on a composer and a costar."

Naturally, Michael will direct and produce the project himself. Where it will wind up no one knows at this stage, but as the word small doesn't exist in Michael's vocabulary, expect the new show to make a big splash.

Michael and his family - wife Niamh and baby Michael Junior - sunned themselves in Barbados recently, and the rest, he says, has done him good.

"You get good vitamins from the sun, which always gives you a bit of a boost. It's good for the heart and soul. I feel good now, ready for new challenges," he says.

"Superstars of Dance" made its debut in Ireland in January, and to promote the series, Michael gave what was billed as his first extensive TV interview in several years.

He used the opportunity to gush about his wife and child, and showed off the palatial home they share, Castlehyde in Co. Cork.

"A friend of mine told me you will never go wrong if you marry your best friend.

"Niamh is very much like that. For years she's been my leading lady. She's a great balancing person for me," he said.

Michael Junior is "the greatest thing that could have happened," Michael said. "Starting a family changes an awful lot in your life - and brings inner peace."

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