The Denver-based Wick School of Irish Dance, founded and directed by Linnane Wick Joseph, is celebrating its twentieth year.”The dancers were joined in Los Angeles by Linnane Wick and Maureen Shea Cerise, a former Wick School championship dancer and current instructor. “I was excited and emotional beyond measure for those kids and there families, for Maureen, and myself ” you know, a lot of hard work had paid off,” said Linnane, whose school has had many champion dancers over the years, but never three at once, “By standards of the Western Regions these days, the Wick”s School is not a huge school so it was pretty phenomenal ” to get three wins.” adding, “I felt like a little kid at my birthday party, not wanting it to end, I kept trying to find somebody else to celebrate or just hang out ” I just didn”t want the night to end ” It was a huge feat, you never know if it is going to happen again so you just bask in the glory of the moment.” All of the solo dancers competeted with 60 or more dancers in their age bracket. It wasn”t just the three first-place Wick dancers who did well. Of the 25 solo competitors 17 placed.” Of those who placed,”seven Wick School dancers qualified to compete in the World Irish Dance Championships over the Easter Holiday in Belfast, Northern Ireland. In addition to the three Oirechtas champions, the other world qualifiers include:” Broccan Ware, Erin Hayes, Annabella Maurera, Claire Morlock, and Emma Anderson. So what did Linnane attribute her schools success? “These kids worked really hard ” at least 3 to 4 practices a week at the studio ” than their practice outside the studio.” And perhaps a little divine inspiration from Fred Wick, Linnanes”s dad and patriarch of the Wick”s School who passed on in September? “Let”s just say that his presence was felt … It would have been great to see his reaction – he would have kept the party going.”

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