John is a 21 year old Physiotherapy student in his final year at Trinity College, Dublin. Irish dance and performance have been a major part of his life since a very young age. He began learning the basic steps at the age of six with Rinceoiri Na Riochta in Tralee. Since then he has achieved both a high standard and ranking in his competitive dance career which includes winning major titles at Munster, All-Ireland, British National, and European Championship level. His proudest achievement to date however, is winning three ‘World Irish Dancing Championship’ titles in Belfast 2006, 2008, and Glasgow 2010. Alongside his competitive dancing, he has had opportunities to perform in various shows both at home and abroad throughout Europe, America and Taiwan. John first joined ‘Siamsa Tíre’ at the age of seven. As part of their community cast, he has performed in many productions over the years such as ‘Oileán’, ‘Clann Lir’, ‘San Am Fadó’, and ‘Tearmann’ in the annual summer seasons. Being a member of the company has also opened up opportunities to explore other forms of dance, for example contemporary dance in shows such as ‘Moriarty’ and ‘Rithim Rhythm’ – collaboration with ‘Printz Dance Project’ a San Francisco based dance company. In addition John has completed numerous internships with the company as well as national and international tours down through the years. While living in Dublin John can also be seen performing at many corporate events in and around 'The Capital' with various dance shows.
This is a video of John from a couple of years ago!
Here we go again - it's question time...
What are your memories of your first performance at Siamsa?
'Bímis ag Rince' - the Christmas show 1999, I was dancing a duet with a girl(Hazel) and at one point all the adults danced around us in a circle. I used to be terrified we'd never make it out!
What was your favourite part to play in any show and why?
When I first learned and performed SWAN in 'Clann Lir'. When I was a child I used to dance the steps side stage every night and when my turn came - it was such a good feeling!
Give details of a funny or embarrassing (at the time) incident you were involved in...
In 'Dance of Life' in 2000 I had the honour of being the 'Leper Alarm' - warning people away from the diseased group with a bell - high point of my career!
What was the last book you read, movie you saw or album you bought?
Book: Dream Analysis and Psychology (Don't ask)
Movie: The Internship
Album: Imagine Dragons - Night Visions
What, if anything, is the best thing that has happened to you since joining Siamsa?
Without sounding incredibly cheesy it has to be all the friends I've made and people I have met!