Sunday, April 5, 2009

Day One: reflection

Back at my homey hostel in Olde City part of Philadelphia, thinking about how much I enjoyed the day.

I had some preconceived ideas about Worlds, and just heavy competition in general. I read some pretty nasty, sharp-tongued comments on the Voy boards, so I prepared myself for catty moms and prissy children.


The families were genuinely so nice, extremely considerate and warm toward each other and me. I talked with lovely family from Australia that was elated to have the Worlds in the US. They explained the popularity of Irish dance in Australia and New Zealand and posed the question, "Are we next?"

Seems like anything's a possibility now that the Worlds have expanded beyond Europe. Representatives from CLRG and the Philadelphia's mayor addressed this theme--that anything is possible, and that you shouldn't rule anything out. So what do you say, CLRG. We going down under any time soon?

The atmosphere felt soft and fuzzy for most of the day, especially the opening ceremonies. Dancers marched on the stage carrying flags representative of every country with a CLRG-registered school. The audience roared for even the most obscure countries. Flags for Ireland, USA and Canada came to the front of the stage, and the national anthems for those three countries were sang.

Then, my favorite part! The Philadelphia Mummers. Don't know much about them, but it was explained that a group of colorfully-clad men parade down the street on new year's day. Their outfits are a mix of clown apparel, pirate costumes and colonial gear. It's hard to explain, so I'll post a video tomorrow. Anyway, they performed a high-spirited series of songs. The lively conductor/band leader managed to lure Irish dancers onto the stage to join the performance, which ended in a conga line of color. Boys and girls danced and jumped to the music played by the mummers' band. I'm serious, it's really difficult to explain. I hope the video gives you a better idea of what I'm trying to say.

Another big day tomorrow. Can't wait to see the olders girls dance. Hope you're enjoying my tweets on Twitter!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for the blog and twitter posts from the World Championships! I will be attending later in the week but feel starved for information...thanks for keeping me in the loop!