Sophie Dupont '21
I have been Irish dancing for 10 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance was when our team won Oireachtas.
I would tell the younger kids to focus on friendships and the experiences you have rather than the pressure of competition.
I will be attending the University of Nebraska Lincoln and studying Nursing.
I have been Irish dancing for 14 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance is winning Oireachtas with my ceili team in 2017 because we had worked hard, and it was really rewarding to achieve that goal.
My advice for younger dancers would be to make the most out of every dance opportunity (whether that be at class or during performances/competitions) because your time as a dancer will fly!
I will be attending Bates College and plan to study politics and economics.
Ayuna Lamb Hickson '21
I have been Irish dancing for 10 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance was the weekend of the Áine O’Shea Memorial Feis and Ball or winning Oireachtas as a team.
I would tell the younger dancers to finish every practice knowing you did your absolute best.
I will be attending Macalester College and studying neuroscience and international studies.
I have been Irish dancing for 10 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance is all of the fairs and fun performances throughout the years!!
I would tell the younger dancers every time you dance, have the intention to enjoy it!
I will be attending the University of Minnesota and studying biomedical engineering.
I have been Irish dancing for 12 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance My favorite memory is dancing at every Irish Fair and doing the Kickin it Irish shows.
I would tell the younger dancers to always have fun and even if you don’t get the results you wanted, keep trying!
I will be attending Benedictine College and studying biology.
I have been Irish dancing for 13 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance was any and all performances. Especially the Christmas Show and Kickin’ It! I absolutely loved every single second of performing on stage. Dance is such an amazing way to express yourself so my advice to younger dancers is to find who you are through dance and incorporate it in your technique and style. Once you have your own touch and personality shown through your dancing, no one can take that away from you and it will always be new and exciting to add your own creativity in dance.
I am going to UW-Madison this fall. I will be majoring in Chemistry and minoring in French.
I have been Irish dancing for 13 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance is winning the Oireachtas with my ceili team!
My advice to young dancers is to try not to let a bad competition day affect your mood and always try and have fun with your friends at competitions no matter your results. You’ll remember the memories you made with your friends more than the place that you got.
I will be attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I will be majoring in Marketing.
Molly Laumakis '20
I have been Irish dancing for 15 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance is qualifying for Worlds the first time! Sharing that experience with my closest friends and family after working so hard and achieving a dream I’d had since I was a little kid was incredible.
My advice to younger dancers is to fall in love with the process of learning and perfecting your dances. Believing in yourself comes from knowing you put the work in!
Next year I am going to The University of Chicago to study Astronomy & Astrophysics and History.
I have been Irish dancing for 11 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea Irish Dance is dancing at the State Fair when Cormac stopped playing while we were still dancing.
My advice to younger dancers is that you can’t let one bad day put you down!
Next year I am going to study Elementary Education at UMD. I am excited to take a gap year this year and continue dancing!
Anjali Tadavarthy '20
I have danced with O'shea for 10 years.
My favorite memory of dancing with O'shea was dancing in Kickn' it Irish with all my friends and seeing my students in the crowds.
My advice to young dancers is to keep dancing because you love to dance. Passion makes all the hard stuff worth it! I am attending Rhodes College.
I hope to major in Political Science and History.
I have been dancing for about 10 years
My favorite memory? Every state fair I’ve done has had so many fun and goofy (and HOT!) memories; going on rides, dancing on a postage stamp stage, eating lots of food, especially elephant ears, running to the air conditioned trailer to get out of the 100 degrees, and just spending the whole day together with my favorite community.
The advice I would give is to do lots and lots of performances with your friends! Make a mini road trip out of it and just enjoying doing what you love with your friends because they’re gonna be the ones that are there for you throughout your dance career and beyond. When you’re older, you can look back on all the weird or unique little performances you did and it’ll definitely make you smile.
What am I planning to do? I think I’m taking a year off… Not sure yet!
I have been dancing for 11 years.
My favorite memory dancing with OID was winning the Mid America Oireachtas senior ladies ceili competition with my team.
The number one piece of advice I would give is to listen to your teachers and work hard to apply their corrections. Also don’t be afraid to ask for help from your teachers, friends, and other dancers because everyone at OID wants to help you improve, succeed, and be the best you can be.
I plan to attend the University of Wisconsin - Madison focusing on finance or marketing
I have been Irish dancing since I was 4, so for 14 years.
My favorite memory of OID is learning the importance of teamwork and how amazing the people around me were. The experience of working together in large groups helped shape me into the person I am today.
Life goes by much quicker than you ever think it will. My best advice is to be deeply entrenched in every moment of dancing and to appreciate where you are at that moment in your life. Take the advice, love and knowledge of the people around you because you never know how long you have left with them.
I will be attending the University of Minnesota Honors Program, majoring in Music and minoring in Business.
I have been Irish dancing for 9 years.
My favorite memory? Either performing Piper for the very first time in KII or traveling across the world with London to compete at the All Ireland Championship.
My advice is to always believe in yourself. Set goals and make a plan to reach them. Never stop pushing yourself and always focus on the things that will make you a better dancer. Do it because you love it.
I will be attending Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia. I doing a pre-med track/majoring in Biology, but also hope to focus on Theatre and do lots of performing. 🙂
I have been Irish dancing for the past 10 years.
My favorite memory would be Irish Fair every year, the fun of dancing and spending all day with my girls.
My biggest advice would be to find what you really love about Irish Dance and stick with it- as long as you're happy it'll be so worth it.
I will be attending Drake University in Des Moines Iowa. I will be majoring in vocal music education so that I can become a school choir teacher or private voice instructor.
I have been Irish dancing for 11 years.
My favorite memory of OID is winning Oireachtas with the O18 ladies Ceili team.
Don’t be afraid to talk to the older dancers. They’re always willing to help out and give advice.
I plan to go to the University of Minnesota Twin Cities for Biology and Psychology with a pre-med focus
I have been Irish dancing for 11 years
My favorite memory is all of the amazing performance opportunities! From the Fringe Festival and dancing at the Fitzgerald Theater to county fairs, all of it was so fun no matter the stage.
The advice I would give is to focus on performing and not placing. It is so much more rewarding to know you gave your best performance and really enjoyed yourself doing it than getting a certain place.
I will be attending Loyola University Chicago, studying Environmental Science
Meghan Rice '18
I have been dancing for 11 years.
My favorite memory I have dancing at O'shea is being apart of the Kickin' it Irish Shows and the ceili teams. I have enjoyed working with my fellow dance friends to put on a successful show and place well at the Oireachtas and Nationals. I have also enjoyed all of the opportunities I have had to perform at many local events to spread the Irish cheer to so many people.
The number one piece of advice I would give to the younger dancers at O'Shea is to watch the older dancers or even youtube videos of champ dancers. You can learn a lot by watching how others place their feet, interact with a crowd and present themselves.
Next year, I will attend Luther College. I plan on studying Chemistry, Math and Spanish. I will also be participating in the dance program. With the dance program, I will have the opportunity to choreography new routines and collaborate with other departments of the school to put on a production surrounding a certain topic.
I have been in Irish dance for 9 years. This September would start my 10th year of dancing.
My favorite memory I have with dancing at O'Shea is would probably be winning at Oireachtas 2015 in Minneapolis… or the laughter and memories made with everyone while at majors and Kickin It Irish practices.
The #1 piece of advice I'd give to the younger OID kids is that sometimes you lose and whether it was a mess up, or not being ready, the best thing you can do is pick yourself back up and learn from those mistakes.
Next year, I plan to go to Inver Hills Community College in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota where I'll focus on getting my generals complete, then I'll transfer over to a university after a year or two to focus on my major. Right now, I haven't decided what I want to major in, but I have an idea of where I want to go. I'm focusing on a social studies or social sciences types field, so like history, sociology and or political science.
Delaney Grundhauser '17
I have trained in Irish dance for 12 years.
My favorite memory from O'Shea is getting to perform at the Chanhassen Dinner Theater.
The advice I have for the younger children at O'Shea is, if you really love it- stick with it and try your best.
I am going to Hamline Univeristy in the fall and plan on majoring in Marketing and Communications.
I have been dancing for roughly 15 years, after learning my first steps at the children's tent at Irish Fair.
My favorite memories from O'Shea would be how welcoming Cormac and the O'Shea community were after we lost Brenda Buckley of Scoil na dtri.
My advice to any younger dancer would be to find what makes you feel happy and positive with your dancing. A good attitude and hard work will help you go far.
Next year I will be attending Drexel University in Philadelphia, and I am planning on majoring in Fashion Design and business with and focus on sportswear and minoring in sports photography.
I have been Irish dancing for 12 years now.
My favorite memory of dancing with OID was being apart of Kickin' It Irish. I loved the feeling of being apart of a show and getting ready with my teammates and making fun memories from it all.
Advice that I would give to any younger Irish Dancer is to just believe in yourself and your abilities and to make sure you take each correction with the goal that you will fix it and that you won't have to correct that mistake again.
I will be taking a gap year and work on getting my TCRG to become a certified dance teacher. Hope to one day open my own Irish dance studio in England!
Josette Langevin '16
I have been Irish dancing for 13 years.
What I have enjoyed most about O'Shea is all the opportunities to perform I have been given. Whether that has been performing at different Majors all across the country, dancing for a video at the Minnesota History Center, or performing on a teeny tiny stage at the State Fair in 100 degree weather. These opportunities have allowed me to have the most amazing experiences with my closest friends and favorite sport.
My advice would be to not be afraid of trying new things and failure is all apart of the process of becoming a better dancer.
Starting in the fall I will be going to school at Columbia College Chicago where I will be studying Fashion Business.
Moira Flagstad '16
I have trained for 11 years in Irish dance, starting at St. Paul Irish dancers then switching to O'Shea in 2011.
My favorite memory with OID was when I went to a February feis in Wisconsin and forgot my dance shoes at home. I figured having to dance with brand new, non broken in shoes would ruin my chances of doing well, and my parents made me buy the new shoes with my own money (and that $200 was about all I had). So I danced my rounds, the two that I had prepared for Oireachtas so I was comfortable with them, while everyone else in my competition had switched dances already and didn't seem as confident with them. So at awards with aching feet and not expecting to place, I won and got into OC! But the best part was when I went back to the vendors and they gladly gave me a full refund for the shoes that I had bought that morning. My advice to younger dancers would be to work as hard out of class as in class because strengthening the muscles out of class helps perform better in class.
This fall I will be attending the University of British Columbia, Vancouver and hopefully double majoring in Marine Biology and French.
Elizabeth Ener '16
I have trained in Irish dance for the past 12 years, 6 of those years being at Scoil na dTri Irish Dance Academy and the other 6 years being here at O'Shea Irish Dance.
My favorite memory from my time dancing at O'Shea would have to be all the times that the cast of Kickin' It Irish walked around singing "Sweet Violet" on the top of our lungs for the entire world to hear (sometimes very out of tune). Being a part of that show was such an amazing experience for me and helped me grow so much as an individual and as part of a dance company!
My advice for the younger dancers is to always remember to smile and be confident with your dancing, because your confidence will show on stage. At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you placed at a feis, or whether you recalled at last year's Oireachtas; what matters is that you are proud of all the hard work that you put in, and that you enjoyed the journey that got to you where you are!
This coming fall I will be attending the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. I plan on pursuing a pre-medical education with a double major in Genetics, Cell Biology and Development (GCD) and Spanish with a minor in General Biology. After my undergraduate years I will be attending medical school to become a surgical oncologist.
Shannon Delahanty '16
I have been dancing on and off for about 10 years, starting off at Scoil na dTri before transferring to O’ Shea in 2011.
Because of the great mix of people we have, my favorite memories here arise from the people we are constantly around. One that comes to mind is when there were a group of OID people that went down to the Two Rivers Feis, and after a long day of dancing, we (the dancers and families) went to Zombie Burger. It was a medley of giggles, spilt milk shakes, and zombie paraphernalia that resulted in hysteria.
My advice to younger dancers is to simply never give up. Even if you are in a slump, in either competitions or in class, push through it. You will come out the other side stronger, and proud that you were able to persevere and overcome the struggle.
Next year, I will be attending the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, in the University’s Honors program. I will be (probably) studying history, specifically ancient Mesopotamia, Turkey, and Europe.
Sarah Anderson '16
I started Irish Dance in September of 2006 so when I leave for college it'll be ten years.
My favorite memory was dancing at Irish fair when I got to dance the acapella for the first time.
My advice for younger dancers is to listen not only to your teacher but to the music and your body.
I will be going to the Augustana University in Sioux Falls South Dakota. I'm going to major in biology and maybe minor in French.
Anneliese Tatham '16
I have been dancing for 12 years! I have many amazing memories, but performing in Kickin’ it Irish at Chanhassen Dinner Theatre and my first Oireachtas in 2011 are my favorites!
I have one piece of advice for younger dancers...If Irish dance is truly a passion of yours, set your heart on your goals and push yourself to be the best that you can be! Don’t give up!
This year, I will be taking a gap year to pursue a few internships in the field of sustainable agriculture, environmental studies and outdoor education in Pennsylvania and beyond! In the fall of 2017 I will be attending the University of MN Morris to study Environmental Science.
My name is David Ochs and I have been dancing in O'Shea Irish dance for 10 years.
My Favorite memory in the dance school was when we performed at the Chanhassen Dinner Theater this year. Some advice I would give to the school’s younger dancers would be, "Don't dance because you want to win. Dance because you love to Dance."
This fall, I'm going to Concordia University and I am planning on majoring in Music Business.
Duncan Newby '16
I’m going to the Dunwoody Technical Institute to study engineering and mechanical robotics.
I have been an Irish Dancer for 10 years.
My favorite memory in Irish dance is the first time I won Oireachtas with my team.
My advice that I would give to younger dancers would be to never let people tell you you can’t do it or that you’re not good enough. When I was younger, people never thought I could make it as a dancer but I kept going. Never let other people’s opinions change your dreams.
Mikayla Newby '16
I’m going to the University of St. Thomas to study Chemistry and hopefully work in the medical field.
I’ve been training in Irish Dance for 10 years and have made a lot of memories at dance. My favorite by far was on my birthday when my brother and I’s friends surprised us by giving us 6 different cakes. This turned into a full on cake fight between my twin brother and I with everyone else cheering us on.
My advice that I would give any of the younger OID dancers is to keep going and to never give up. When I first heard about competitions, I told my mom that I would go to the World Championships one day and she told me to focus on making it out of beginner first. Flash forward 10 years, I’ve competed at 12 majors, 2 of which were the World Championships. Never give up on your dreams and never stop pushing yourself.
Audrey McCarthy '16
I have trained in Irish Dance for 14 years.
One of my favorite memories at O'Shea was a time when Cormac was teaching a new step and he said, "I don't care what you have to do, go home and embroider it on a towel and eat it, for all I care, just don't forget it!"
The #1 advice I would give to younger O'Shea dancers is, Go To Class.
Next year I am attending The University of Minnesota, Majoring in Biology and Spanish with a plan to go on to Medical School.
Liam Slattery '15
I have trained in Irish dance for eleven years. My favorite memory would be winning the National Championships and going to Disneyland!
My best advice to younger OID kids would be to work hard every day and keep getting stronger. You have to go for your goals. JUST DO IT!
For future plans, I am going to try to join a touring show and go to St. Paul Tech to get a degree in Carpentry.
Amy Green '15
I have been dancing since I was nine. My favorite memory of dancing with O’Shea was definitely performing Kickin’ It Irish with my fellow cast members at Chanhassen Dinner Theaters this spring. It is an extremely beautiful and unique theater and it was amazing to take the stage with all of my closest friends on the set of Mary Poppins.
One piece of advice I would give to a younger Irish dancer would be to watch dancers who are world, national and regional champions and decide what you like about their dancing and try to implement those techniques into your own dancing. It will help you unlock your unique style and help you improve immensely.
Next year, I plan to attend Boston University to complete a major in Biology and a minor in Dance.
Meghan Golder '15
I have trained in Irish dance for 9 years. My favorite memory of dancing at O'shea would be getting to work and train with my girls’ teams each year because you bond and support each other on and off the stage and you create a sort of confidence that you don't find in solo dancing. As well as going to my first world championships, it opened my eyes to a world of possibilities at a young age and made me train harder than ever.
My number one advice I would give younger kids would be to forget about the trophies and competitions like worlds and winning and just dance purely because you love it and can't get enough of it. You will never be able to control what the judges think of you but you will always be able to control how much you love the sport.
I will be attending Coe College next year in Iowa where I plan to study psychology and writing and go into the field of sports psychology!
Callaghan Long '14
I have trained in Irish dance for 12 years. My favorite OID memory would have to be six hour Sunday practices last year when we all became so much closer to each other.
My best advice to other dancers would be to always push your limits and try to keep setting new ones.
For future plans, I am going to the University of Minnesota Duluth next year, where I will major in Chemical Engineering.
Evan Lowe '14
I have been training for 12 years. My favorite memory is when I won the North American Nationals 2014.
Advice I would give my younger kids is that you need to work for whatever you want. It makes the victory so much sweeter knowing you have done everything you can to achieve it.
For future plans, I will be attending the Aveda Institute in Minneapolis to study Cosmetology. I will still be dancing and teaching Irish dance with OID & I plan on getting my TCRG and teaching with Cormac.
Claire Dietzsch '14
I have trained in Irish Dance for over 12 years now. One of my favorite moments would be dancing at the Target Center... or being at Oireachtas 2013 with all the ceili team dancers and winning the over 16 mixed competition. I also loved being in London competing on a team with my friends.
My advice to younger dancers would be to always remind yourself of why you love to dance when you want to quit.
For future plans, I am attending the University of Minnesota Twin Cities in the fall. I plan to major in Biomedical Engineering.
Rita Wegner '14
My best advice to younger OID kids would be to feis outside of Minnesota! Feising keeps dancers motivated to stay fit and to keep working towards the next level.
For future plans, I am going to the University of Pennsylvania next year, where I will major in Earth Science, and minor in Actuarial Mathematics and German.