Michael Voskoboinikov (meriadoc_1171) wrote,
Michael Voskoboinikov

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An Coimisiún (The Irish Dancing Commission) was founded by Conradh Na Gaeilge (The Gaelic League) and is still under the patronage of Conradh.

Conradh Na Gaeilge was founded in Dublin in 1893 as a non-political and non-sectarian organisation. It had as its objectives the promotion of all aspects of Irish culture but it was primarily concerned with the language and literature. However, the dancing benefited greatly under the patronage of the Conradh and dancing classes were held at most branches. The London branch (founded in 1894) organised what was to be the first ever "Céilí" in the world in 1897. The first Oireachtas was held in Dublin in 1897 and included dancing competitions, while the first 'feis' was organised by the Macroom branch of Conradh in 1898. Within weeks this Feis was followed by one in nearby Ballvourney and Ballingeary. Both the Oireachtas and the Feis have by now become worldwide phenomena as has the Céilí. In 1902 the London branch of Conradh collected and published two books of Irish figure dances.

By the early 1920s Irish dancing had become popular throughout Ireland and both Cork and Leinster had its own teachers associations. Cork Teachers Association was founded in 1895 and the Leinster Dance Teachers Association (LDTA) was found in 1924. However right up through the early decades of the 1900s it was the Conradh who actually organsied almost all of the Feiseanna. Problems with the running of the dancing events led members of the LDTA to meet with Conradh representative's in 1924 and a joint body or "Control Board". This functioned effectively from 1924 to about 1928. In 1928 the Annual Congress of Conradh decided to set up its own "Sub- Committee for Dancing". This sub-committee was referred to by various synonyms before finally settling on the title "Coimisíun an Rince" in 1930. In 1943 this title was changed to "An Coimisiún le Rincí Gaelacha".

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