Feis (pronounced "fesh" meaning festival) is an Irish dancing competition. Feiseanna (plural) were traditionally cultural gatherings with events and competitions in music, dancing, singing and other aspects of Irish culture.
Competitors are split into age-groups (e.g. U9, U10, U11, etc.). This is based on the age of the child on January of the current year. They are then split into levels based on their ability and success at previous feiseanna. Dancer's move through the levels by fulfilling certain criteria: winning a first, second or third in each dance, depending on the level (there must be a minimum of 5 other dancers) or the teacher's discretion.
The levels of solo competitions are as follows:
Beginner One is the first level of competition. Reserved for dancers who haven't previously competed or haven't placed in previous competitions.
Beginner Two level is open to dancers who have placed first, second or third in a Beginner One to move to this level.
Novice level is for dancers who have won either a first or second in a Beginner Two dance to move to this level.
Prizewinner level is for dancers who has placed first in a novice level dance.
Preliminary Championship level is for those who have repeatedly placed firsts in all the dances at the Prizewinner level. At this level, dancers only perform one soft shoe dance, one hard shoe dance, and one set dance.
Open Championship level, the most advanced of solo competition, is for those who had previously won two first place awards in the Preliminary level.
****Moving to the next level is all subject to Bella's discretion.****
Figure Dancing: After your child has already danced in their first feis, they will be required to dance in figures at their next feis. Figures are "team dances" and Bella will match up dancers to perform. They will perform the same steps at the same time which include hand holding and other arm movements. There are two, three, four and six-hand figures. When your child is going to be dancing in figures, Bella will hold a figure practice at one of her locations. This will usually be held on one or more weekends before the feis. If you do not attend this figure practice you will not be allowed to attend the feis!
Dance Fees: There is a charge for every solo and figure dance that your child enters. That will be collected at the time of signups. There is always a signup sheet at class for upcoming feiseanna.
Students are not allowed to do any performances without the permission of Bella. This includes talent shows, festivals, etc.