Wigs and Fake Tan:The Life of an Irish Dancer

December 8, 2009
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My name is Megan and I'm an Irish dancer.
Irish dancing is what I live for.It is what I'm passionate about, it is what makes me me.It makes me stand out from the crowd.I don't do camogie, I don't sing in the choir, instead I'm an Irish dancer.

Irish dancing is a competitive global sport.It is not as popular in Ireland, my home country, than in America, where there are probably thousands of dancers.
Irish dancing is not an easy sport to do; I do 2 hour classes four nights a week and I'm still breathless after doing a full heavy jig.It is a hobby which takes up an enormous amount of time, which is why it's the only hobby I do.But I don't mind, because Irish dancing is the only thing for me.

Irish dancing can be a cruel sport however.Many complain about the politics behind it all.I could spend forever talking about this but I'll sum it up for you.
At most feises, in a championship there are usually either 3 or 5 adjudicators.The dancers goes out on stage in threes and they dance most of the dance until the bells rings and the music stops.The dancers goes back to their places, pointing their toes.When the adjudicators ring their bells, the dancers bow and walk off the stage.
The adjudicators by rights should give a fair result.Some of them though might be doing favours for other dance teachers.An adjudicator could give someone 1st place not because they deserved it, but because they're friendly with their dance teacher or they were told by the dance teacher.I've had many feises where I've gone out and brilliant and yet not make the recall.

Dancers in championships would wear either a full wig or a bun wig.Their dresses are either second hand or designed and cost thousands.Dancers also wear heavy make up and fake tan; this is so they won't look pale on stage.
From reading the description above you would think that Irish dancing was more like a corrupt beauty pageant than a talent competition.If you do, then I would agree with you.Sometimes, I feel like throwing up my hands in the air and wonder, "Why am I still doing this?" after a bad result.
However, I can't. Because I love Irish dancing.Call me crazy, but it's my life.When I'm stuck with a load of homework to do, or I have a bad day, I immerse myself in it.Hopefully I would like to get in as a troupe dancer for Riverdance for a year, just to see what it's like.

Irish dancing can be cruel.But I am still passionate about it.

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This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

M501athleticThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
May 26, 2016 at 4:35 pm
I love this! I am considering taking up Irish dance along with other forms of dance. Thanks for this article
Hannah_Dances00 said...
Nov. 21, 2011 at 10:44 pm
definitely! We're high glitz pageant girls, but nothing else lets you fly.
irishdancer37 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Nov. 13, 2011 at 5:32 pm
i fell your pain. lol. but nothing compares to it!
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