a non-competitive traditional Irish dance program at
Longview Plaza--1742 Long Pond Road
Rochester, NY 14606
Welcome to Rince Na Saor, Rochester's recreational Irish dance school! Since 1997, Rince Na Saor ("rinka na sayer") has provided an alternative to the typical competition-based Irish dance school, offering children and adults the opportunity to learn traditional Irish dance in an environment focused exclusively on recreational students. Rince Na Saor's unique curriculum was developed specifically to meet the needs of the recreational student, which include lower costs, a smaller time commitment, and a more relaxed learning pace.
There are several different types of Irish dance, all of which are available at Rince Na Saor. We offer instruction in the Modern style of Irish stepdance which most people know from Riverdance, including hard shoe and soft shoe stepdancing, ceili and figure dances, traditional and contemporary set dances, family dances, and dance dramas. We also offer Rochester's first Sean Nós classes ("shah nose"--old style Irish stepdancing), and Country Set classes for beginners.
The links below will tell you more about us, and you can contact me at kathyw[at]rns.dance with any questions you may have.
Classes have started, and it's wonderful to see so many new and familiar faces! This year's classes will include a Dance Drama, a Broom
Dance, and a mother/daughter dance, along with reels, jigs, hornpipes, set dances, and Sean Nós!
We are accepting registrations for fall classes. The standard lesson package is for 8 lessons (Registration Form is available below), and there are 4 lesson Beginner packages (one for children, one for adults) offered through Greece, Gates, and Irondequoit Continuing Education on October 6, 13, 20, and 27. Contact the Continuing Education departments to enroll in these Beginner packages.
We had a wonderful Sean Nós workshop with Rebecca McGowan on Saturday, September 23! Thank you to Jean Smith of Rochester Irish Arts for setting up the workshop, and to Rebecca for coming all the way from Boston.
I am delighted to announce that Sean Nós dancing is coming to Rochester in the fall! Sean Nós is "old style" Irish dancing,
low to the floor and with a relaxed upper body. See the video below and our "Class Schedule" page to watch some Sean Nós dancing.
Rochester's first Sean Nós classes will start in October at Rince Na Saor. Our first, 4 class session will be on Friday nights, 8:30-9:15 p.m., October 6, 13, 20, and 27. Lesson fees are $35 for the session, $10/class to "drop in". See our "Class Schedule" page for more information.
This is an exellent video describing Sean Nós dancing. Since it was filmed, Sean Nós has become very popular all over Ireland, and has made its way to America.
Also starting this fall are Country Set Classes for beginners. Irish Country Sets are social dances which are similar to American square dances and fall under the "Low" style of Irish. Country Sets are a regular feature of our Rochester ceilithe (dance parties) held throughout the year at McGinnity's on West Ridge Road. See our "Class Schedule" page for more information.
I've received several queries about how old is "too old" to start learning Irish dance, so I'd like to clear up a few myths:
1) I have taught students from age 7 to those in their 60's. There is no one "right age" for anyone to start.
2) It is not necessary to have had any prior Irish dance instruction, or indeed any prior dance instruction; Rince Na Saor's Level I classes assume no dance instruction of any kind.
3) Irish dancing is not "too hard", for adults or anyone. Keep in mind that when you're watching Riverdance or Lord of the Dance, you're watching champion dancers. They're fabulous to watch, but not everyone dances at that level, just like all people who like to ski don't ski at an Olympic level (or give up skiing altogether because they can't ski at an Olympic level). Irish dance is a vast discipline, and there is plenty of dancing to be enjoyed at lower levels, plus Irish dance is great exercise!