Twelfth Annual
Irish Arts Center NYC Dance Festival


IAC | Dance

Twelfth Annual
Irish Arts Center NYC Dance Festival

Sunday, May 5 | 1 pm - 7 pm

Riverside Park South 
Pier I at W 68th Street 

Start your summer off right by kicking up your heels! Led by Niall O’Leary TCRG, ADCRG, the Festival marks the start of the Summer on the Hudson series at Riverside Park South. Celebrate Irish dance and culture with performances from top Irish dance companies nationwide and join in the fun with dance classes for both kids and adults, music sessions, Irish language classes, and singing circles. With face-painting, Irish craft vendors, and a céilí finale to the evening, this is one for the whole family to enjoy. 

Bring your dancing shoes—the entire day is free and open to all.


1:00pm Niall O'Leary School of Irish Dance    Performance
1:30pm Ceili Dancing!
Learn a few traditional steps!             
Everyone out on the dance floor
All ages, group dancing   
2:00pm Keltic Dreams Performance

Percussive Dance Jam led by Cuthbert “Tura” Arutura

All styles of percussive dance welcome!
Learn a few traditional steps!  
All ages, group dancing

Performance/ Participation
2:30pm   Niall O’Leary Fun Dance 
Learn a few traditional steps!
3:00pm Darrah Carr Dance Performance
3:25pm Cuthbert “Tura” Arutura Sean-Nós Dance Performance
3:30pm Donny Golden Dancers Performance
3:55pm Percussive Dance Jam led by Mary Beth Taylor TCRG
All styles of percussive dance welcome!
4:00pm Donny Golden Fun Dance
Everyone out on the dance floor
All ages, group dancing
4:30pm   Broesler School of Irish Dance Performance
5:00pm Learn Sean-Nós Dance with Cuthbert “Tura” Arutura Participation
5:30pm Niall O'Leary Irish Dance Troupe Performance
5:55pm Cuthbert “Tura” Arutura Irish Rap Performance
6:00pm Percussive Dance Jam led by Megan Downes       
All styles of percussive dance welcome!

Evening End Céilí for All!

Everyone out on the floor for some fun and easy group dances
Dances called by Megan Downes
Music by Dylan Foley (fiddle) and Dan Gurney (button-accordion)


MUSIC & LANGUAGE TENT                                       

1:15pm  Traditional Irish Music Session – All Welcome!  
2:45pm  Irish Language Conversation Circle  
3:45pm Irish Traditional Song Circle with Louise Kitt  
4:50pm   Traditional Irish Music Session – All Welcome!  



1:30pm  Salmon School of Knowledge (interactive children’s theatre performance)  
3:30pm  Salmon School of Knowledge (interactive children’s theatre performance)  


1:00pm-4:00pm Children’s Face Painting
1:00pm-4:00pm Arts & Crafts for Kids
3:30pm-4:30pm Group Games: Giants, Wizards and Elves and Captain’s Call
4:15pm-5:15pm Gaelic Kids (Irish language learning games for children)


Please note: all schedules subject to change


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1 Train to 66th St.

Walk west on 66th St. to the end of the block (past ABC). At the end of the block make a right onto Freedom Place? Walk up the block and make a left onto 68th St. Walk past the large high-rise apartment buildings to the Riverside Park South entrance. You will be able to see most of the park from this entrance.

A, B, C & D Trains to 59th St. Columbus Circle.

Transfer to the 1 and follow the above directions.

2 & 3 Trains to 72nd St.

Walk west on 72nd St. and make a left onto West End Ave. Walk down (south) to 69th or 70th streets. Turn right and walk over to Freedom Place. Make a left onto Freedom Place and a right onto 68th St. (You may be able to take 70th St, straight to Riverside Blvd.)

4, 5, 6, 7, E & F Trains must transfer to the above trains and follow the appropriate directions.



Use the West End Ave and Broadway lines and follow the above the directions.

Cross-town buses: M72 headed west. The bus will stop at Freedom Place & 68th St. This stop is a block away from the park.


Performer Biographies

Cuthbert “Tura” Arutura, sean-nós dancer, choreographer, composer, performer & Gaelic Scholar. Born in Zimbabwe, Tura came to Ireland 1993 and rose to fame in November 2012 when he competed in Oireachtas na Samhna. In 2011 TG4, Irelands premier TV channel for Irish language viewers, commission two television shows featuring Tura, “Stéip le Tura” and "Smidírini" both shortlisted for a Celtic Media Award in April 2013. A regular on numerous primetime current affairs TV and Radio shows in the UK and Ireland, he has often featured at festivals in Ireland and the UK. He was recently commissioned to choreograph the opening performance for the Fleadh Cheol na hEireann 2013 (the biggest Irish music festival in Ireland) to be held in Derry in August 2013. As movement director, Tura has directed ceremony’s such as the Derry Peace bridge opening ceremony in June 2011, which featured heads of states and European Union commissioners. in October 2010 Queens University Belfast held the centenary graduation ceremony for Nelson Mandela in October 2010, for which Tura choreographed and composed music. Tura is one of Ireland's most sought after choreographers and composers across numerous arts, media and intercultural platforms.

Broesler School of Irish Dance - For more than 25 years, The Kevin Broesler School of Irish Dance has been an active member of the East Coast Irish community. The school was opened in New York by its founder and director, Kevin Broesler.  Mr. Broesler is a former national and world champion step dancer and is a fully accredited teacher and adjudicator of Irish dancing, qualified by the An Coimisiún le Rincí Gaelacha in Ireland.  Since 1985, the school has grown and expanded.  The Broesler School now has classes in Brewster, NY, Fishkill, NY, Westwood, NJ, Haddonfield, NJ, Newark, DE, and Baltimore, MD.  Classes are taught by Kevin Broesler, ADCRG, Megan Harper, TCRG, and Eileen Paulson, TCRG. The expansion of the school has been marked by achievements enjoyed by many of Kevin’s former and current dancers at regional, national, and international competitions as well as the prestigious World Irish Dance Championships.  Several Broesler dancers have gone on to perform professionally in Riverdance and Lord of the Dance.  Broesler dancers participate in shows, charity events, and festivals all year long, sharing their love of Irish Dance with audiences all over the world. 

DARRAH CARR DANCE has created a sensational and unique blend of traditional Irish step and contemporary modern dance since 1998.  Artistic Director Darrah Carr calls her style ModERIN: a playful combination of the words modern (dance) and ERIN (an Irish American reference to Ireland). New York City performance highlights include: The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, the company's 10th Anniversary Season at the Irish Arts Center, NBC’s The Today Show, The Duke Theater on 42nd Street, Celebrate Brooklyn, The Yeats Project at the Irish Repertory Theatre, Snug Harbor Cultural Center, the annual Irish Arts Center NYC Irish Dance Festival, Symphony Space's Dance Sampler, and a guest appearance with Mick Moloney at the Skirball Center. The company has also performed at venues throughout the United States including Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, The Yard at Martha's Vineyard, Wesleyan University (Connecticut), The Center for Performing Arts and SUNY Orange (upstate New York), The Dance Complex and the JFK Museum (Massachusetts), The Goose Route Dance Festival (West Virginia), The Valentine Theatre (Ohio), and the San Jose Fleadh (California). They have also appeared at the Toronto Fringe Festival and at the Bank of Ireland Arts Center in Dublin.  Darrah Carr Dance and guest choreographer Seán Curran received a 2012 Bessie Award Nomination for "Outstanding Production of a Work that Pushes the Boundaries of a Traditional or Culturally Specific Form." For more information, please visit www.darrahcarrdance.com

MUIREANN NÍ CHUÍV is a native of the Connemara Gaeltacht in Ireland, and has been involved in Irish language teaching for the past ten years. She is a graduate of the National University of Ireland, Galway, having completed both a BA in Celtic Studies and a Higher Diploma in Translation Studies. She was also awarded an M.Phil. in Early Irish from Trinity College Dublin for her work on the medieval manuscript Togail Bruidne Da Derga. Muireann teaches four levels of Irish language at the Irish Arts Center, as well as leading a free Tae agus Comhrá class to help people with their conversation skills.

MEGAN DOWNES performs and choreographs old style Irish steps, sean nos, Canadian step traditions and American clogging and flatfooting. She trained in competitive stepdance with National Heritage Fellow Donny Golden, learned traditional Irish set pieces, old-time waltzes and vaudeville routines from Josephine McNamara and country sets from traveling master Connie Ryan. After graduating with a BA in Anthropology from Smith, Megan returned to NYC to teach traditional dance and directed the dance program at the Irish Arts Center for many years as a volunteer. She calls dances and teaches workshops, including 14 years at Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night Swing and at the Augusta Heritage Center at Davis and Elkins College in West Virginia. As a principal dancer with Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble for 16 years, Megan performed with the Turtleduhks at the Ulster-American Folk Park, in The Crossing with Tim O’Brien and with StepAfrika. A member of SAG-AFTRA  and ASCAP, Megan is almost known for co-writing popular Uncle Earl song “Crayola” with Kristin Andreassen. Megan currently teaches the NYCity Stompers (come dance!) and at Theatre 80 St.Mark’s. Megan has toured or performed as a guest artist with Billy McComiskey, James Leva, The Duhks, Lunasa and Danny Knicely & The Furnace Mountain Band. A December 2008 review in The Washington Post remarks that "among the area's best Irish dancers... Megan Downes has hyper-flexible ankles; she taps the sides of her feet to the floor in shockingly rapid succession."

DONNY GOLDEN was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, of Irish parents, who actively encouraged all of their children to study Irish music and dance. In a short time, Donny became a North American step dancing champion, and the first American to place in the All-Ireland and World competitions. He has traveled the globe performing and adjudicating in Africa, Asia, Europe, Australia and throughout North America. He has choreographed shows for his dance troupe in such prestigious venues as Radio City Music Hall and Carnegie Hall, and has developed dance scenes for major motion pictures like The Devil's Own. He has performed on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, The Late Show with David Letterman and Live with Regis & Kathie Lee. He has trained over a thousand children in the art of Irish step dancing, including the original star of Riverdance, Jean Butler. In 1995, President Clinton awarded Donny the National Heritage Award for his invaluable contributions to the promotion, preservation and development of Irish dancing throughout the world. Donny and his dancing school continue to excite audiences with their regular performances with the top Irish musical groups in the world, such as The Chieftains and Cherish the Ladies.

THE KELTIC DREAMS Irish dance troupe is made up of 36 children ages 7-14 who are not Irish, but have African American and Latino backgrounds. As a teacher at PS 59 in the Bronx, Caroline Duggan has been teaching the children Irish music and dance after school for the past nine years. Starting out with absolutely nothing, The Keltic Dreams have gone from dancing barefoot to dancing in the traditional hard shoes, appearing on the front cover of The New York Times, raising $85,000 in five months to fly to Ireland to perform for the President of Ireland and later to make an appearance on The Late Late Show. They performed at Stormont in Belfast in 2008 and performed at The White House St Patrick’s Day celebration in March 2010, invited by President Obama.  A documentary titled A Bronx Dream, by John McColgan’s production company Tyrone Productions, captured their story in 2008. Following the huge success of both trips to Ireland, it is clear that this project plays a highly valuable role in promoting Ireland/US relations in a new way: children from diverse backgrounds in the US embracing Irish culture and heritage, linking into what is itself becoming an increasingly diverse Ireland. This is a true story of what can be achieved through hard work and the belief that dreams really do come true.  See website for upcoming shows, photos and information www.kelticdreams.com

MÁIRE MCINTYRE developed a love for the Irish language at the age of four, thanks to her elementary school teachers. While in secondary school, she attended Irish summer camps in the Connemara Gaeltacht. Máire graduated with a B.A. in Irish language and literature and Earth Sciences from UCD, Dublin. She taught Irish to secondary school students and adults while living in Dublin.Soon after emigrating to the U.S. in the 80s, Máire taught adult language classes at the Irish Arts Center and also for The Gaelic League of New York. She later pursued a Masters in Literacy at CCNY. Máire is currently the organizer of The Irish Language Meetup in NYC and tutors children in the language part-time. She works full time as a Literacy Specialist for the NYC Public school system.

NIALL O'LEARY, TCRG, ADCRG, is a former All-Ireland and World Champion. His teachers included Kevin Massey, proclaimed by Michael Flatley to be the greatest Irish dancer ever, and Rory O'Connor, the first man to do Irish dancing on the radio. O'Leary qualified as an Irish dance instructor in 1994. In 1996, he put together and choreographed the first-ever multi-national team to compete in the World Irish Dance Championships, including dancers from Germany, Finland, Switzerland, Belgium, Australia, Botswana, the US and Ireland. Niall O'Leary performs regularly as a solo artist, in duet with Darrah Carr, and with various acts such as Natalie MacMaster, Cherish The Ladies, The Prodigals, The Andy Cooney Band, and Mick Moloney’s Green Fields of America. He conducts occasional workshops and master classes around the US , Ireland , Mexico , Japan, Thailand, Vietnam and Cuba. He has released an instructional video on Irish step dancing entitled Cuts from the Kitchen. He is the founding chairman of Úll Mór CCE, the Manhattan branch of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, a feis musician playing accordion and keyboards, and also practices as an architect. O'Leary was honored in 2004 by Irish America Magazine as one of the Top 100 Irish-Americans of the Year. 212 726 1602 |  ireland@nialloleary.com | www.nialloleary.com

NIALL O'LEARY IRISH DANCE TROUPE is a professional Irish dance company performing at festivals, showcases, weddings, corporate events, and concerts. The Troupe has toured the US and Japan , performing in such prestigious venues as Osaka Festival Hall. In December 2001 and March 2002 the Troupe toured the US with The Three Irish Tenors. The Troupe performed a free open-air concert every summer in New York at the Union Square Summer in the Square concert series for many years. They also performed at the Wintergarden at the World Financial Center three times in recent years. They have also performed for DKNY and danced on NY1 and Fox 5. The dancers in the Troupe are from Ireland and across the US but now all live in New York . Together they blend their influences and experiences to create an exciting Irish dance show, combining traditional forms with new choreography. The dancers in today’s performance are Niall O’Leary, Caitlin McNeill, Chris Armstrong, Clare Duignan, Rosemary Cooper and Shannon Maloney. 212 726 1602 |  ireland@nialloleary.com | www.nialloleary.com

NIALL O'LEARY SCHOOL OF IRISH DANCE was founded in Dublin , Ireland , in 1995, and was established in New York in 1996. Classes in solo dancing, céilí dancing and dance drama for children and adults are held in Manhattan , Queens, Staten Island and Hastings-on-Hudson , as well as the Florida Panhandle and Cancun, Mexico. Manhattan venues include the Irish Arts Center and five other locations, making this the largest Irish dance school in the city. Classes are taught by Niall O’Leary TCRG ADCRG, Louise Corrigan TCRG, and Clare Duignan TCRG. The school has been featured on NBC-TV, FOX-5, CBS Radio, The New York TimesThe Daily NewsThe Irish EmigrantHome and Away, various Queens papers and Fuji-TV ( Japan ), and for the last three four has taken part in the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade on 5th Avenue. 212 726 1602 | ireland@nialloleary.com | www.nialloleary.com

MARY BETH TAYLOR, Director of Scoil Rince Taylor Irish Dancing & Sean-Nós Dancing School in Dublin, has taught and performed sean-nós dancing in Ireland, continental Europe, the United States, and the South Pacific. Along with teaching, she has competed in the All Ireland Sean-Nós Competition, participated in cultural festivals throughout Ireland, and choreographed for the stage. Most recently, she was a featured dancer on the St. Patrick’s Day edition of The Early Show on CBS (2010). “A talented young hoofer” – THE CHICAGO DAILY HERALD


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