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Be Inspired By Nicola Byrne


Diddlyi has five inspiring and super talented Dance Masters as part of our team helping you to dance your best. We want you all to get to know each of the Dance Masters a little better because they are great people on and off the stage floor. First up is Nicola Byrne of Riverdance who teaches our Master Your Performance workshop.  Get ready to be inspired by Nicola.

Where is the best place in the world you have performed?

Its too difficult to pick one!  I was very fortunate to have had the chance to travel to some amazing places with Riverdance.

Highlights have to be:


– Performing with Riverdance in Egypt on a stage in front of the pyramids- it was a surreal gig. Stunning location.

– Beijing, China- Live TV show for the Chinese New Year broadcast to over 1 billion people. We also had a chance to visit the great wall of China on a day off where we broke into a spontaneous performance of Heartland…as you do!

– Tokyo,Japan- the people were so friendly and its a wonderful city with so much to see and do.

– The Gaiety Theatre, Dublin- It was the first place I performed the lead role with Riverdance and I was born and bred in Dublin! So at the end of the day- there’s no place like home!

What’s the best Irish dance accessory?

The best Irish dance accessory (apart from ice- more of a necessity than an accessory!) is your fellow dancers/friends! Nothing compares to dancing on stage with your friends and sharing the incredible experiences with them. You don’t need anything else as an Irish dancer! We can dance anywhere but it’s not as much fun on your own!


What’s your best fitness tip for Irish dancers?

Practice pilates and yoga if you can, to strengthen your muscles and make them more flexible- also strengthens your core which is very important as an Irish dancer. Keep dancing full dances through and add on extra bars to build stamina. Don’t forget to always warm up and cool down.

What’s the best advice you can give Irish dancers about achieving goals?


Stop talking about it and just do it! Put plans into place and action step at a time..literally! Practice, Patience and Persistence!

Expect some knocks and to make mistakes along the way but don’t be disheartened. Use them to gain experience and learn from them. Be yourself and believe in yourself and your ability, and with a lot of hard work you will get there!  Make your own luck- don’t wait for it!

What’s your most embarrassing dance moment?

Where do I start?! There’s been so many! I have been known to slip and fall on numerous occasions, most  memorably on live TV! There is a famous live entertainment/talk show in Ireland called The Late Late Show. They had a special show one night years ago dedicated to Michael Flatley, who was of course there in the studio as guest of honour. The audience was also full of everyone from the Irish dancing world and needless to say anyone who wasn’t in the studio was watching it on TV.

Our dance school were asked to perform a number  on the night with live music by the Chieftains. We had practiced for weeks and the dress rehearsals went great. Then during the live performance, I, of course, slipped right in front of the camera and fell on my behind. It felt like a lifetime lying on the ground but I got up and kept dancing- as our dancing teacher used to say-‘if your head falls off- you keep going’! I thought that my dance career had ended before it even started! It’s so funny now looking back but I was absolutely mortified at the time!!

    • For more about Nicola, check out her bio on Diddlyi, and see all the details of her workshop, Master Your Performance, here

Get To Know The Other Dance Masters

Be Inspired by Paula Goulding
Be Inspired By Ciara Sexton
Be Inspired by Shane McAvinchey
Be Inspired by Ashley Smith

Photo credits: All images belong to Diddlyi Media


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