15th May 2016
Photo: Australian Irish Dancing Association
The Australian Irish Dancing Championships are held annually for just under a week. It is held in different states of Australia each year to allow for better participation of dancers. In 2017, the championships will be held in Adelaide for their 50th Anniversary.
This competition splits competitors into age groups (eleven years, twelve years ect.) and by gender. An example of a section is the nineteen years ladies.
Solo dancers are expected to dance three rounds including two hard shoe/heavy shoe rounds and one soft shoe/pumps round. The first round is either a hornpipe or treble jig in hard shoes, while the second round is either a reel or slip jig in soft shoes. Dancers are scored based on these dances and the best scores within a percentage (sometimes up to fifty percent) are recalled to dance a final round. This final round is again hard shoe is a set dance. Dancers who did not recall are not placed at presentation, while dancers who recall are guaranteed a place or award.
The national championships also have a teams component called Ceili. This is where dancers compete together in a team from their dance schools. The amount of dancers per team depends on the section, there are four hand, six hand and eight hand sections for different age groups. There are also sections for mixed gender teams.