|So you love Irish dancing, it’s your passion. If you could find a way to be involved in the Irish dance world for the rest of your life you would. But, how to do that?
The obvious answer – Get your TCRG, TMRF or other certification and become an Irish dance teacher, perhaps with your own school.
Becoming a dance teacher is definitely a way to parlay a passion for Irish dance into a career. But teaching is not the only way to build a future in Irish dancing. There’s a world of options waiting if you know where to look. Here are a few ideas to get your career wheels turning.
Companies like Shamrock photo and FeisPix get to spend a lot of time around competitions – capturing unforgettable and artful moments in dance. There are also opportunities to photograph for shows – like Heartbeat of Home or Feet of Flames. Whether you strike out on your own as freelancer, or you apprentice with an established photographer, if you’re comfortable behind a camera this gig may be for you!
Are you a writer? Do you love asking questions or telling stories? Publications like Irish Dance Magazine, Dance Magazine or even Dance Spirit (among others) are great platforms to aim for. Many of these offer internships, and if articles aren’t your thing there’s always sales, fact checking, web design, multimedia content editing and more! All with dance at the core.
Love hanging out on Tumblr, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook? Know how to build up a good number of followers and find just popular images or content to share? Then why not get paid to do that, AND make it about dance! Brands like Elevation design, Riverdance, and even dance schools need someone to run their Facebook Pages, Twitter accounts, and keep quality content going on their behalf. Example – writing blog posts for a website like, say, Diddlyi.com.
While becoming the next Gavin may seem like an overwhelming prospect, keep in mind that it takes a village to make exquisite costumes happen. There are entire teams behind many dress brands and positions – from designers, to marketers, to webmasters and accountants – involved in making dance costumes happen. And it’s not just limited to the ones that make feis costumes either; there are opportunities for costuming show casts and beyond!
From vendors like Rutherford, to shows like Riverdance, there are many businesses within Irish dance and they have to find a way to spread the word about what they offer. Marketing can fit to many different skill sets. As a graphic designer you could work on the logos and ad art for shows, bands, or other dance brands. Or there’s web design, branding (helping a show, product, or company determine its name or identity), and even placing ads in brochures, newspapers, or at feis booths.
There are several universities that offer degrees in Irish dance and music, or in dance and music as a whole. With these programs come job positions. Whether as a lecturer, a teacher’s assistant, or administratively as a program director or department coordinator, there are many opportunities to share Irish dance with eager scholars.
The trick to unearthing alternative job ideas in the dance world is to recognize that Irish dance is an entire industry, and that there are many facets that hold opportunities for careers. Think about your skills and abilities, and look for creative ways to pair those with your favorite parts of the Irish dance realm.
Erin is a 20-something Irish dancer competing in the Southern Region with Nashville Irish Step Dancers. She splits her time between dance and her career in social media marketing. Her favorite part of dancing is meeting new & inspiring people. Connect with her on Twitter @erinforevr. (Source: Diddlyi.com)