Irish dance is a family affair for Sophia, Sarah, and Sydney Wahl of St. Louis Park. The sisters study with North Star Irish Dance in Eden Prairie. According to their mom, “What started as one girl’s interest in dancing led to an infectious desire that spread to the others.” Sarah, the oldest of the sisters, was interested in dance, but was unfamiliar with Irish dance. Taking advantage of North Star’s “try-it-out” class sparked genuine interest for Sarah. Her mom tells us that “she enjoyed the teacher, the music, the style, and herself in that setting.” Sarah shared her new steps with her sister Sophia. When Sydney turned five, it seemed only natural that she would join in the jigs and reels she had been mimicking at home. An additional “perk” is that the girls have some Irish heritage on both sides of their family. Learning Irish dance has provided a special connection to their grandparents. The Wahl family also appreciates North Star Irish Dance’s focus on community service, and actively participates in the school’s community outreach activities.
Sophia, Sarah and Sydney will use their IMDA Educational Grant for additional dance lessons, with the goal of developing their skills to allow them to perform independently. They have especially enjoyed learning about the cultural significance of the dances. They plan to add some history of Irish dance to these presentations, and to bring these performances to senior audiences.
All the girls are actively involved with North Star Irish Dance, helping with planning and fundraising, and community service projects as well as participating in performances at IMDA’s Day of Irish Dance and North Star’s own “Wee St. Patrick’s Day Celebration.” Their letter of recommendation reiterates the girls’ enthusiasm for learning and for sharing their love of Irish dance with their audiences.
The Irish Music and Dance Association is delighted to help these dedicated young dancers expand their appreciation of Irish culture through their love of Irish dance.