Proudly displaying their diplomas are (from top-down left to right):  Thea Shannon

Tara School of Irish Dancing students excel in Irish Dancing Commission grade exams

The results for the Campbell River dancers were exceptional for a non-competitive school

Campbell River’s Tara dancers can kick up their heels with the best of them.

On Saturday, June 6, 18 students from Campbell River’s Tara School of Irish Dancing participated in the official Grade Examinations of the Irish Dancing Commission – the governing body of Irish Dancing worldwide.

Deirdre Penk O’Donnell, ADCRG from Vancouver, conducted the examinations and commended the candidates on their level of dance and preparedness.

The examiner noted that she adjudicates competitions and conducts Grade Exams internationally, and that the results for the Campbell River dancers were exceptional for a non-competitive school.  All dancers received the highest grade “Distinction” above the other possible grades of “Honours”, “Merit” or “Pass”.

The Grade Exam syllabus has been designed to provide a strong foundation in Irish Dance by developing a candidate’s physical skills, stamina, expression, musicality and an appreciation and knowledge of the traditional dances and culture.  It provides a worthwhile sense of achievement for individuals whether they dance solely for health, recreation or competitive reasons or hope to pursue a career in Irish Dancing.

The Tara School of Irish Dancing has chosen a community performance focus rather than a competition focus, so the Grade Exams provide the local dancers with the opportunity for recognition of their individual achievements in solo dancing.  Dance Director, Margaret Mullen, ADCRG is delighted with the results for her dancers and notes that the Exams will now become part of the regular curriculum in Campbell River.  There are twelve grades which must be taken in order and the maximum number of Grades that can be taken at a time is three.

Results with Distinction:

  • Preliminary Grade:  Jasmine Flood, Victoria Hoffman, Kailey McFerran, Grace Overton, Sonia Schmidt, Meghan Sharkey, Miranda Sharkey, Amanda Voeltz
  • Grade 1:  Kristin Campbell
  • Grades 1 & 2:  Tess Hogan, Kirsten Schmidt, Thea Shannon
  • Grades 1,2&3  Sophia Badzio-George, Sydney Brown, Ellen Beebe, Mackenzie Norris, Rebecca Stevens, Cate Wareing Oksanen.