Irish céilí dancing is the native group dancing of Ireland and is danced to traditional Irish music. Some céilí dances can be traced back to the 1500's! Most céilí and set dances are danced to reels or jigs, though some are danced to single jigs and hornpipes. Céilí dancing is very different from "step" dancing and competition dancing in that is a social, group dance. When the Irish Arts Academy of Indianapolis holds a "céilí" (or social event with music and dance), we always use live music provided by arts academy faculty and the Indianapolis Céilí Band. After all, it's not a party unless there's live music in addition to live dancing!
Irish set dances are "quadrilles", danced by four couples arranged in a square, while céilí dances are danced by varied formations of two to sixteen people. In addition to their formation, there are significant stylistic differences between these two forms of social dance.
This is what set dancing looks like:
This is what céilí dancing looks like:
These are pretty advanced dancers, so don't be worried! Everyone can learn to dance!
We hope you'll join us!