Luck of the Irish – McCarthy’s dancing champions
|Year 8 student, Maggie Devine, won the Australian Irish Dancing Championship in her Intermediate 13 years age group|
|Caitlin, left, placed 6th in the Senior Girls 16 Yrs competition and her sister Annie, right, placed 7th in her age group|
Year 8 student from McCarthy Catholic College, Emu Plains, Maggie Devine, won the 45th Australian Irish Dancing Championship in the Intermediate Girls 13 years competition, competing against 72 elite dancers from all over Australia.
Maggie’s sister, Year 11 student, Caitlin, placed sixth in the Senior Girls 16 years group; while youngest sister, Year 7 student, Annie, placed seventh in the Junior Girls 12 years age group in the championship held in Adelaide from 25-30 September.
The sisters have been Irish dancing since they were four and for the last six years have competed for State and National titles, and this year, for a World title.
When all three girls placed in the top six at the State Championships in 2011, they qualified to compete on the global stage and flew to Belfast in April this year, to dance at the World Irish Dancing Championships against 180 elite dancers in each age group. While they didn’t win any titles there, Maggie said it was a good experience to see what the competition was like and spurred them on for the National Championships in Adelaide.
‘I’ve worked so hard in the past year,’ said Maggie. ‘It was the most amazing feeling and it’s really good to be a part of it with my sisters because we all work together; we know each other’s dances and when we practice at home we’ll help each other with the different steps or techniques.’
Each of the girls improved remarkably in their national standing for their age groups in the last year with Maggie moving from equal third in 2011 to first place in 2012; Annie progressing from 24th last year into seventh place and Caitlin advancing from 12th to place sixth this year.
McCarthy’s principal, Robyn Meadows, said the whole school community was very proud of the sisters’ ‘exceptional’ achievement. ‘To get three sisters in the top 10 in Australia shows the commitment and perseverance they have to stick at it and be so successful,’ said Robyn. ‘This is also demonstrated in their school work and in their character at school every day.’
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