Friday, March 9, 2012

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Stillson School of Irish Dance


Irish stepdancing has gained popularity in recent years and this unique dance form will again be celebrated on Saturday, March 10, 6:30pm, at the Dunaway Center in Ogunquit where Ogunquit Performing Arts will showcase stepdancers from the renowned Stillson School of Irish Dance, to followed by a screening of the delightful film, “Invitation to the Dance.”

The Stillson School of Irish Dance is under the direction of Carlene Moran Stillson ADCRG/TCRG. She is accredited by Ad Coimisium in Dublin, Ireland, and is a member of IDTANA (Irish Dancing Teacher’s Association of North America). Carlene has a long tradition of dancing, having started at the age of four.

In existence for nineteen years, the school is the only certified school of Irish dancing in the state of Maine and its dancers compete all over New England. They have placed in the New England Regional Irish Dancing Championships annually, and in competitions around the world. In addition to the dance performance, Carlene Stillson will discuss the history of the dance and the many different costumes worn by dancers. The dancers return to Ogunquit by popular demand.

Next, to add to the enjoyment of this special evening of dance, Ogunquit Performing Arts will screen “Invitation to the Dance,” with Gene Kelly at his finest. The multi-talented Kelly is director, choreographer and performer, and the film is unique in that there is no spoken dialogue. The characters perform their roles entirely through dance and mime. “Invitation to the Dance,” released in 1956, is an anthology consisting of three distinct stories, all starring Gene Kelly and featuring leading dancers of the era: Tommy Rall, Igor Youskevitch, Tamara Toumanova and Carol Haney. In addition, dancers from ballet companies of New York, Paris and Rome complete the cast of performers in this one-of-a-kind tour de force of dance. Five different composers provide the music.

The curtain time for this event is 6:30pm, with the performance of the Stillson stepdancers followed by a reception for the dancers; then the screening of the film, “Invitation to the Dance.” Admission is $5 and payable at the door the evening of the performance.

Photo Caption: Stillson dancers in their various colorful costumes will be performing Irish stepdances at the Dunaway Center, March 10, to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. (Courtesy Photo)