The internationally acclaimed Trinity Irish Dance Company opened at the Joyce Theater on Tuesday evening and audiences were wowed. It’s their first engagement with Joyce in 20 years and it’s lucky for the Irish to have them in the New York metro area just in time for St. Patrick’s Day. Get your tickets for performances until Sunday March 20 and enjoy a breathtaking program of groundbreaking dance.
Trinity Irish Dance Company is inspired by the traditional style Irish jig, a genre that has been practiced for hundreds of years. Yet the company’s contemporary approach translates into dance pieces that are impressive. Led by founding artistic director and choreographer Mark Howard, in collaboration with associate artistic director and co-choreographer Chelsea Hoy, this pioneering company has continued to innovate for over thirty years. The company celebrates the individuals, especially the women of the predominantly female company who bring dynamic works to life with unmistakable style.
The program of The Joyce also includes the TIDC Band which accompanies the dancers and also offers the public wonderful musical selections. Musicians include Brendan O’Shea, composer on guitar and vocals; Jake James on Fiddle and Bodhran; Christopher Devlin on guitar and vocals; and percussionist Steven Rutledge.
The show includes pieces that are joyful, high-spirited, full of meaning and always captivating. The first act opened with “Soles,” a 2018 choreography by Mark Howard. It was the perfect piece to start the show off as it showcases the company’s precision, style, grace and impeccable footwork. We love Michael Howard’s quote, “When the soles of your shoes wear out, you’re on your feet again.” The first act continued with four more dance works and a song, “McDonald Creek” composed by Brendan O’Shea. The first act included the New York premiere of “Sparks” with choreography by Mark Howard and world champion dancer Ali Doughty. This impressive piece featured Doughty walking beautifully in time to the music of All-Ireland Champion fiddler Jake James. The first act concluded with “Communion” with choreography by Mark Howard and Sandy Silva. This piece highlighted the power of personal connection with an energetic display executed seamlessly.
Act 2 continued to delight dance and music lovers. It started with one song, “Listen” composed by Brendan O’Shea and Mike Kirkpatrick and continued with four more dance tracks and another song, “The Reel Thing”. Dance compositions include “Johnny”, a 1991 choreography that brought Trinity Dance Company international fame. Another New York premiere, “American Traffic,” choreographed by Michelle Dorrance and Melinda Sullivan, demonstrates the company’s versatility in combining Irish stepping and American tap dancing. “An Sorcas” or “The Circus”, is also a New York premiere with choreography by Mark Howard and Chelsea Hoy. It was the perfect selection for the program finale as it was dazzling to behold.
The company includes dancers, Courtney D’Angelo, Ali Doughty, Michael Fleck, Lydia Fredrick, Anna Gorman, Abigail Graham-Luke, Chelsea Hoy, Francisco Lemus, Danielle Masbruch, Sierra McNall, Claudia Morrison, Sydney Niewiedzial, Maggie Nowakowski, Colleen Michael O’Connor, Kelsey Parry, Gracie Peters, Clare Rahner, Kaitlin Sardin and Marissa Wurster.
We applaud members of the creative team with costumes created by talents including Courtney D’Angelo, Luis Razo, Shamrock Stitchery, Birgit Rattenborg Wise, Golden Eire Designs, Kristine Fatchet and Cathy Fitzmaurice. Lighting design is by Al Crawford; Erik West is the sound engineer; Michael Altergott is the assistant sound engineer; the production manager is Garvin Jellison and “Jojo” A. Franjoine is the production manager/lighting designer.
Discover the best of the best with the Trinity Irish Dance Company. They will be at the Joyce Theater until March 20. Tickets, which range in price from $10 to $65, can be purchased at www.Joyce.org, or by calling JoyceCharge at 212-242-0800. Note: Ticket prices are subject to change. The Joyce Theater is located at 175 Eighth Avenue at West 19th Street. For more information and to learn more about the Joyce Theater’s detailed health and safety protocols including required face coverings and proof of vaccination policies, please visit www.Joyce.org.
Photo credit: Todd Burnsed