So proud.

So tonight we were at a team dinner and we were all sitting peacefully enjoying our meal. All of a sudden my mums phone went off and she screamed as she saw “Congratulations you have been successful in your ADCRG exam”. The entire table started screaming and cheering and before we knew it the whole restaurant was up cheering and clapping. As we left the restaurant the owners asked if we were okay and our meal was okay as we were very emotional. It was the most exciting / hilarious moment and im so happy we were all together to witness it. So proud of my mumma who has worked so so hard and has proved to me anything is possible and thankyou for continually inspiring me!!! Congrats to all the other TCRG, ADCRG and Grade Examiner Candidates. No matter what the result, you should all be so proud of yourselves for even sitting the exam. <3


In a crowded, florescent-lit ballroom, time eludes the dancer tucked inside. Crystals shine like stars and her hair is as fake as the tan of the girl that ties her shoes too tight and who wraps her feet like she’s taping muscle to bone under her brand new socks. The glitter and diamonds distract you from the broken bones and torn muscles; you can’t notice her limping when you’re admiring her dress. She is a warrior in a skirt.  She doesn’t care what you have to say unless your name is followed by ADCRG or TCRG, so don’t bother trying. 

In the ballroom with no windows, time doesn’t exist, even when she checks her phone six hundred times. Her first round was supposed to start at nine; they haven’t even asked her to check in yet? Now soft shoe is done; how long does she have to wait for recalls? Does have time to grab lunch? Where is her bible? Hand her her pen; she has to circle every number she hears. She doesn’t think; she just circles. She has to go over it again.

Her own number isn’t circled.

It isn’t felt at first. She doesn’t feel her hands get cold; she doesn’t feel her leg bouncing with anxiety. She doesn’t notice the crushing pain in her chest until she hears “competitor number two, dancing Planxty Hugh O’Donnell at speed 69.” Her body knows she should be on that stage. Her hands are trying to get her to put on her hard shoes and wrap them in white tape; her legs are trying to get her in the hall to run through The Piper at 76 one more time. But her heart - no, her heart knows that it’s over. Fourteen girls were picked. She wasn’t on the list. 

In that same ballroom, you watch her watch them. You watch her fight back tears as she forces herself to watch the girls she needed to beat. Time suddenly exists; it’s already four o’clock, she says. I can’t believe I’ve been up for this long, she sighs. I need a nap, she insists. They’re empty words, things she needs to say to keep you and anyone else from noticing the disappointment that has its firm grip on her tired soul. 

“Next time,” is all you really hear her say before she stands up and brushes her hands off on her spanks. She will take a long shower, she won’t say a lot, and she will watch awards be handed out with her chin held high, because next time…

Next time.

Just in!

Received my packet from CLRG! I already own a copy of the book and the CD but it’s great to have past examinations in hand! Also received a booklet on Code of Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures which I did not know existed. They also sent me all the info for the ADCRG exam which is super cool because then I can get an idea of what I need to know when that test comes around. Won’t be taking it for at least 8 years, but it doesn’t hurt to have! It will also help me get a better understanding of how my future dance students are being judged in competition.

I have finished book one in ARF. I’ve been studying with a fellow dance mate who will also be taking the TCRG exam in Atlanta. We are going to spend the next two weeks sharpening up on these dances as well as going over all of our practical dancing. Then we’ve got the two books left and the music portion to study. We try to review the music portion at least once to twice a week on our own and I think by now we are both at least 75% sure of the tunes. Only 8 months until the exam! It used to feel like ages until I’d be taking it, now it’s starting to feel like tomorrow! There is no way I will fail this exam. No freakin way. 


NAIDC 2016 MUSICIANS -- and yes, Sean O’Brien is one of them 🎉🎉🎉
  • Merv Bell, TCRG, Canada
  • Liam Bradley, Ireland
  • Dean Crouch, TCRG, England
  • Anthony Davis, England
  • William Furlong, USA
  • Dr. Brian Grant, ADCRG, Canada
  • Patrick King, Canada
  • Kevin Joyce, Ireland
  • Damian McKee, Ireland
  • Christopher McLoughlin, USA
  • Mark Mohan, Ireland
  • Niall Mulligan, USA
  • Sean O’Brien, Canada
  • Cormac O’Shea, TCRG, USA
  • Liam O’Sullivan, England
  • Francis Ward, TCRG, Ireland
  • Ann Marie Acosta Williams, TCRG, USA

SPREAD IT AROUND! John Cunniffe TCRG & ADCRG challenges every school that runs a feis to have a donation bucket for ASLA. There’s so many people in the world suffering from this terrible disease. The irish dance community isn’t as small as it seems. Together we can make a difference.

(this is also payback for all of the burpees and push ups he’s been making us do recently)