The Roberts Academy of Irish dancing is located in Adelaide, South Australia with class locations in Glenelg North and Pooraka. The school aims to teach your children to be the best they can be, while having fun along the way & building self esteem and other skills which will benefit them outside of dance.
The school was founded in 2008 by Andrew Roberts, after he passed his Irish dance teacher's exam first time. Andrew later went on to pass his ADCRG in 2013, qualifying him as an adjudicator. The school is registered with AIDA (Australian Irish Dancing Association) and An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha in Ireland. This gives our registered dancers the opportunity to compete locally, nationally & even internationally.
From small beginnings with just a handful of pupils, the school has since grown & expanded with many of our dancers now climbing the competition ranks. The school has been represented every year at the State & National Championships. In 2010 the school was represented at the World Championships for the first time, with several dancers making the trip since, as well as competing at events such as the Great Britains, All Irelands & North American Irish Dance Championships. 2015 saw some outstanding results for the school including our first National Champion & first International Recalls.
We usually take beginners from around the age of 4 or 5 though this is largely dependant on the individual child as some may be ready to start earlier. We have no upper age limit either - we have had a number of dancers who have started with us as adult beginners (age 18 and above) and do not place any limits on a dancer due to age.
We run both solo and team classes. Solo classes are where your child learns the art of Irish Step Dancing similar to the styles seen in Riverdance and Lord of the Dance. Team classes are a fun class where pupils are taught traditional Ceili dances (pronounced kay-lee) and modern Choreographies. Ceili and Choreography teams range from two to sixteen dancers and are competed at both State and National level. Dancers are welcome to attend as many classes per week as they like and discounts are offered for those dancers who attend more than two classes per week and for families of two or more registered dancers (see Fees & Registration for further info).
In addition to the competition aspect, the school enjoys many opportunities for non competitive displays and performances. These allow the dancers a chance to learn and show off more modern, show style pieces like those seen in Riverdance and giving them valuable experience should they ever wish to join a touring show. We also have several social events through the year including our Start of Year barbecue and regular group activities, allowing us all to kick back and relax in a more social, non-dance setting!
Andrew Roberts, ADCRG
Andrew is the director and teacher of the school. Andrew began Irish dancing in 1998 and danced competitively for 10 years. He rose quickly through the competition ranks to include such achievements as 9-time undefeated South Australian State Champion, and winning multiple National titles.
Andrew travelled extensively during his Irish dancing career, adding several international titles to the collection, including a top 5 ranking at the World Championships. He then also went on to tour with the ‘Riverdance’ shows. Andrew passed An Coimisiun’s TCRG exam on his first attempt in 2007 and went on to open the Roberts Academy in his hometown of Adelaide in early 2008. He later passed his ADCRG exam in 2013, qualifying him as an Irish dancing Adjudicator with An Coimisiun.
His experience and training have given him a great insight into the dedication and skill required in Irish dancing, and he is now able to pass this on to others. In his first year as a teacher one of his pupils attained a Top Three result at the Australian Nationals. Dancers from the school have gained multiple State titles in both Solo and Team events, and he has trained pupils to represent the country at international events and the World Championships.
In 2010 Andrew went on to train with the Australian Institute of Fitness, becoming fully qualified Personal Trainer. This has given an even greater understanding of the effects of Irish dance on the body and as such, all dancers at the school are trained in such a way to maximise their performance while minimising injury risks. In addition, he has a current Senior First Aid Certificate and Police Clearance, ensuring the best safety for dancers in the school.
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