Have fun, celebrate the dancers and Irish culture were the goals of the Irish Ceili put on by Danceworks Instructor Cathy Savage last Friday night at the Kenmor theatre in Morden.  

According to Savage, 30 students from 5 different classes performed a variety jig and reels on stage, ranging in age and ability. 

"Some of these wee little ones, it was their first time dancing Irish dancing on stage and they were just so adorable - oh my goodness. I could eat them up. And then some of the older ones were a bit more polished dancers who compete yearly. They were fantastic too. So, you just see the different calibers and you see what Danceworks has to offer, too." 

Savage noted the Irish 5 Class just returned home from Dayton Ohio from the North American National Championships.

Danceworks Instructor Cathy Savage with some students from the Irish 5 ClassDanceworks Instructor Cathy Savage with some students from the Irish 5 Class

Dancers were complimented by a singing Irish Cowboy, Tom McDermott. originally from Ireland who now calls Winnipeg home. He sings in several facilities for older adults who enjoy his lighthearted stories and music. Savage has known him for years. 

"Tom McDermott is awesome." she went on, "He's just such a great spirited man. I used to teach his daughter dance and he's known me since I was 12 years old. So, he always comes out and he loves events like this. He's still incredibly good at what he does. He's just a lot of fun to have." 

Irish Cowboy Tom McDermottIrish Cowboy Tom McDermott

McDermott kept the audience singing along from The Unicorn, with all the dancers on stage acting out the song, to Irish Eyes and Mary's Wedding, all woven together with Irish tales and jokes. 

Savage recognized the incredible support from many in the crowd. 

"We have amazing parents here at Danceworks, especially in the Irish division. They're so incredible. They're always supporting their kids at events like this and getting their kids to dance class on time. It's huge when their lives are so busy and they always ask, 'Do you need anything?' and are willing to help. And so, this is really, really great. I tell the children once a month, 'Go and give your mom and dad a hug and say, 'Thank you for bringing me to dance. So, they know they're appreciated too."