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NZ Audiences Promised 'Fiery' Dance Experience

New Zealand Audiences Promised 'Fiery' Cultural Dance Experience

New Zealand show audiences are being promised a 'fiery' dance experience with a 'distinctive cultural twist' this month with the announcement of the third season of Adrian Murphy's modern Irish dance show.

'FireDance, The Show' fuses modern Irish dance with Maori Kapahaka, Cook Island, hip hop, ballet, jazz and gospel in what Murphy says is the Irish Dance Club's biggest production yet.

Irish-born Murphy says the club has 'brought together a cast of local world-class dancers and performers with fire in their feet and passion in their souls'.

"It's New Zealand's biggest and most spectacular Irish dance production yet," he says.

"This is a first class production and we have always pushed the boundaries of traditional Irish dance - that is why we refer to it as being modern Irish dance.

"Now we lift the bar higher by adding a modern and exuberant flair and injecting hand movements and facial expressions and fast and furious Pacific Island drum rhythms to put a bit of fire and passion into Irish dance."

Murphy, who has danced, choreographed and produced dance shows in Ireland, the UK, the USA and in Australasia, believes the dance talent in New Zealand is as good as anywhere in the world.

"New Zealand has the talent in this country to produce a first class home grown product. Just as Michael Flatley put modern Irish dance on to the world stage, we are bringing the same opportunities to New Zealand dancers."

The Irish Dance Club's 2002 production included some Maori Kapahaka, this year the producers and choreographers have grown the concept adding a number of new cultural identities.

Murphy says he has found it fascinating working with dancers who have been trained in non-Irish dance styles. "This is an asset to Irish dancers and makes them a more rounded performer."

Perfection is a must for his troupe.

"Rehearsals are gruelling. The dancers, musicians, singers and guests artists have been rehearsing full on for nine months up to eight hours a day. It's coming together so perfectly."

FireDance The Show production manager Pak Peacocke says the rhythms and beat of the different cultures work extremely well together.

"FireDance The Show will the year's most exciting dance spectacular," he says.

FireDance The Show also features a live nine-piece Irish band that Murphy says will excite and delight audiences with the way it blends modern Irish dance music with the powerful drums of the Pacific.

With a high-tech industrial set design by Guy Richards, stunning special effects and audio visuals and more than '1,000 stunning costumes and 27 acts' and a cast and crew of 195, producer Murphy is promising audiences 'a spectacular show'.

The music has been carefully selected by the team leaders of each performing group and the band has arranged traditional Irish music as well as writing new material for the show.

Performers come from a range of groups including the Irish Dance Club Inc., Te Kapahaka O Waipapa, Auckland Pacific Gospel Choir, Pacific Tamure, Mt Eden Ballet Academy and Victoria Phillips Academy of Jazz.

The show opens at the Aotea Centre on Wednesday November 12 and runs to November 16. There are seven shows only with matinees on Saturday and Sunday November 15 and 16.

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