"We pride ourselves in not just the results, but through our heavy influence in both past and present students' journey from grade level to champion. Wherever you want to go with Irish dance we can take you there."
- From the Instructors of Acadamh Rince
Keriann is a Utah native who began dancing at age 5, taking tap and ballet from a local studio in Ogden. At the age of 12, she moved with her family from Ogden to Cedar City, where she was able to broaden her dance horizons by taking classes from a retired professional ballerina from Winnepeg, a former Las Vegas show dancer, and a national champion in jazz dance!
In high school Keriann dabbled in theater. She was a featured dancer in Cedar High’s production of Guys and Dolls, and played Jean MacLaren in Brigadoon, which gave her the chance to learn a little bit about Highland dance. She was also the assistant choreographer for the play, giving her the opportunity to put together and teach tap numbers to the leads.
After graduating from Cedar High, Keriann continued to take ballet and jazz at Brigham Young University, but was forced to retire because of a knee injury. She earned her degree in Fashion Merchandising and graduated from BYU in August of 1995.
Keriann’s interest in Irish dance was peaked when a friend called her from across the country and told her he’d seen a show on PBS with a dancer that looked just like her! He sent her Riverdance on VHS, and she immediately started picking the steps off of the screen. It would be a few more years before she would see a six-week Irish dance class offered in a community program, but it only took one class to hook her! She attended her first formal Irish dance class in September of 2002, and has since gone on to perform, compete, choreograph, and teach. In 2007 she won a regional championship with an adult team at the Western Region Oireachtas.
Keriann is excited to be a part of the Acadamh Rince team.
Katie began her dance career at the age of 3, taking ballet lessons from Norma Anderson, the first ballet dance instructor in Bountiful, Utah. After developing a hatred of tights at a very young age, Katie took a break from ballet and then took lessons in Scottish Highland dance for a short time. Katie finally began Irish dancing at the age of 12, under the direction of Maureen McTeggart Hall, T.C.R.G., A.D.C.R.G. She trained and danced under Mrs. Hall’s tutelage for seven years. During this time, she quickly advanced to the championship level and was competing at the regional championship level within two years of starting her training. After dancing with the McTeggart School of Irish Dance, she danced with the Crawford School of Irish dance under the direction of Jill Crawford, T.C.R.G., a former McTeggart Colorado dancer. During this time, Katie was afforded many opportunities to continue competing at a regional and national level, progressing to the highest level of Championship – Open Champion. She also attended many master classes and workshops in the Western U.S. and Canada, receiving instruction from talented instructors and dancers such as Anne Hall from McTeggart, Ellie and Michael Maguire from the Maguire O’Shea Academy in England, and Leslie Wilson from Scoil Rince De Danaan in Canada. This diversity of formal training greatly improved Katie’s dance skills on all levels. Her own technique improved, and she was also able to experience new teaching and training methods.
In addition to competition, Katie also had many performance opportunities. She performed multiple times with the Utah Symphony, The Chieftains, Eileen Ivers & Immigrant Soul, and danced at many events for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah. She danced with a local Irish band, The Donegal House Band, and was on the Utah Performing Arts Tour for two years.
Katie has been assisting with teaching for almost her entire Irish dance career. She loves working with all ages and all levels, and loves to see dancers progress and gain confidence – both as dancers and as people. Katie is very excited to be a part of Acadamh Rince.