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Saturday 30 August 2014

Forget Flatley: Prodijig put spark into Irish dance

Laura Butler

Published 20/12/2012 | 05:00

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'RIVERDANCE' is dated and Irish dance is in need of revitalising, according to young dance troupe Prodijig.

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Choreographer Alan Kenefick has insisted that the days of Michael Flatley-inspired performances to traditional music are gone and that 21st Century audiences are looking for something more modern to keep the style alive.

Cork-born Kenefick (28) told the Irish Independent that his group, winners of Sky One series 'Got To Dance', are giving a new lease of life to Irish dance.

He was speaking at open auditions for his upcoming show 'Footstorm', which will see Prodijig return to the stage next year in their own production.

"When you think of 21st Century Irish dance, it shouldn't be 'Riverdance'," he said.

"It's about modern moves and modern music that's upbeat and theatrical.

"Things have moved on now. We know better than others what people our age and era want to see. The 'Riverdance' crowd are much older at this stage, whereas I think we understand what audiences are looking for today," he explained.

'Footstorm' will enjoy a 12-night run at the Olympia theatre in Dublin, from April 16, 2013, before embarking on a nationwide tour of the UK.

Over 75 hopefuls turned out yesterday for an opportunity to join the successful troupe.

Mr Kenefick has put the show together himself, including music and set production.

"We've been working on the show for months now and it's definitely the biggest challenge I've ever taken on. But it's exciting," he said.

He is in search of 13 dancers to join them on tour.

Aoibhinn McDaid, from Co Westmeath, was among the competitors in Dublin's O2 arena. The 17-year-old is the Irish Dance World Champion in her age category.

"I've been dancing for 12 years and it's what I want to do for a living. To do something like this would be a lot of fun."

Tess McGovern (21), from Co Clare, was another hoping she has what it takes. "I've been dancing for 15 years and I'm in Dance College trying to broaden my dance range and in training to do this long-term," she said.

Irish Independent

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