First Class is FREE!
Irish dance classes at AIDA are taught by Sarah Armstrong, TCRG. Sarah is accredited with the Commission of Irish Dance, An Coimisiun Le Rinci Gaelacha ( ). This means AIDA students have the opportunity to compete, at the invitation of Sarah. Competitions are optional to all AIDA students, as we welcome recreational students as well.
All classes are held on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at our Winchester studio located at 2261 Valley Avenue. Studio is located behind the Dairy Queen, next door to Blue Plate Books.
Each class is held weekly. Price is monthly unless otherwise specified.
There is an annual registration fee of $20
Little Beginners (30 min) $40 ages 3+4
Currently joined with our Beginners classes below...
Beginners (30 min) $40 ages 4+
Mondays 4:30 - 5:00
Wednesdays 5:30 - 6:00
Beginners II (60 min) $70
Mondays 6:00 - 7:00
Wednesdays 4:30 - 5:30
Fridays 5:30 - 6:30
Advanced Beginners (60 min.) $70
Wednesdays 6:00 - 7:00
Fridays 4:30 - 5:30
Novice (60 min.) $70
Mondays 5:00 - 6:00
Wednesdays 6:00 - 7:00
Adult Beginners (60 min.) $70
Fridays 7:45 - 8:45
Fridays 6:45 - 7:45
Prelim/Open Champion (90 min.) $80
Mondays 7:15 - 8:45
Wednesdays 7:15 - 8:45
Private Classes (all privates are 1 hour in length. Please contact Sarah directly to schedule a private class) $50 per session
*Please note that it is strongly encouraged for all those competing to participate in 2 classes a week
** DROP-IN FEES Please note that if your dancer drops in for a class, that the following fees apply:
$15 for 30 min class
$20 for 60 min class
$25 for 90 min class
For the 2nd dancer in a family, the annual registration fee for that dancer will be waived. For that 2nd dancer, monthly class fees are:
$30 for a 30 min. class $50 for a 60 min. class
$40 for a 45 min. class $60 for a 90 min class.
For the 3rd dancer in a family, the annual registration fee for that dancer will be waived. For the 3rd dancer, monthly class fees are:
$20 for a 30 min. class $40 for a 60 min. class
$30 for a 45 min. class $50 for a 90 min class.
Our 2019 school year begins August 5, although we have open enrollment year-round. This means we accept new students throughout the year, regardless of level. Due to the nature of competitive Irish dancing, we do not take a typical summer break. Some of our recreational families choose to take a month or two (or three) off each summer - in this case, AIDA asks you give us your summer plans by June 1 each year so we can put a hold on your account. Reminder that we charge tuition monthly.
2020 Holidays/School Closures:
- We do not typically close the studio for Monday holidays
- We do not close for Easter Monday
- Spring Break - no classes May 30-June 6
- Mini Summer break - no classes July 29-August 4
- Thanksgiving break - no classes Wednesday and Friday (11/25 and 11/27) of Thanksgiving week
- Oireachtas break - no classes Monday 12/7 (this is the day after the Regional competitions end and our dancers will need a well-earned break! Beginner dancers are asked to attend the Wednesday Beginner class to make up this missed class)
- Christmas break - 12/23 - 1/3 (last class Mon 12/21/20, first class of the year Mon 1/4/21)
*Competitions are optional. Although Sarah is a certified teacher and teaches her classes as such, recreational students not wishing to compete are more than welcome in classes
Little Beginners (30 min) Ages 3+4 This class is the perfect introduction to our beginner Irish class. It is designed to introduce music and mobility to our littlest Irish dancers. Learning weight distribution, how to point our toes, proper arms/hands, music and rhythm, and how to behave respectfully in class while having fun learning the very basics of Irish dancing will be the focus of this class
Beginners (30 min) This class is for dancers who are new to Irish dancing. Ages 4+ In this class, we will learn Irish dance basics – proper posture and foot placement, practice proper classroom behavior, we will learn our hop 23s, sidestep, and other traveling steps. We will learn our Beginner Reel and Light Jig steps. We will learn our first ceili dances (group/social dances). This class is open to competing- Sarah will approach parents once their dancer is ready to compete (they will need to dance their 2 Reel and Light Jig steps without help).
Beginner II (60 min) This class is for dancers who are just starting hardshoe. In this class, we will perfect our Beginner Reel and Light Jig steps and learn Slip Jig. In hardshoe, we will learn our Fast Treble Jig and Fast Hornpipe steps. We will learn our first ceili dances (group/social dances). This class is open to competing- Sarah will approach parents once their dancer is ready to compete (they will need to dance their steps without help).
Advanced Beginner (60 min.) This class is for those who have progressed out of Beginner II class. We will learn new Reel, Light Jig, and Slip Jigs steps in softshoe. We will learn new hardshoe steps in Fast Hornpipe and Fast Treble Jig. We will learn more advanced ceili dances. We will learn our first traditional set dance (a hardshoe dance).
Novice (60 min.) This class is for those who have progressed out of Advanced Beginner class. We will learn new Reel and Slip Jig steps in softshoe and will learn new hardshoe steps in Slow Hornpipe and Slow Treble Jig. We will learn more advanced ceili and set dances.
Adult Beginner (60 min.) This class is for the beginner Adult who wants to experience Irish dance among his/her peers. We will learn basic softshoe and hardshoe dances and will work on set dances and ceili dances if the class desires. This class moves at the students' pace in a non-competitive environment.
Prizewinner/Champion (90 min.) This class is our most advanced. Students must practice regularly outside of class times. This class will learn advanced steps in soft and hardshoe. Advanced set and ceili dances will be learned.
Pilates (30 min.) This class is open to all of AIDA's dancers, ages 10+, and AIDA dance moms and dads. Pilates is a fantastic way to work on core muscles, which are used so often in Irish dancing (without core muscles, it is extremely difficult to hold the correct Irish dancing posture or have "hang time" on dance moves). We will also perform some foot and ankle strengthening exercises to help our intrinsic foot muscles to develop correctly. This class can be attended as a drop-in (you pay for each class you attend) for $15 per class, or as a semester-long class (20 week long semester, runs Aug 2-Dec 13) for $200 to be paid in full at time of registration. Contact us for more details on family discounts.
Private Class Private classes are to help a student by providing one-on-one instruction. Each class will focus on the dancer’s specific needs (to better prepare for an upcoming feis, to work on a judge’s comments, to perfect their solo steps or to choreograph a special piece for a talent show or other outside event).
* Please note that the class names do not necessarily correspond with the dancer’s competition level *
Please see separate Transfer Students page to complete an inquiry form
A Note on Competitions
Competing dancers represent AIDA and will be expected to practice outside of class, treat fellow dancers with respect and kindness, and dance their best in class and at competitions. AIDA will not tolerate disrespect in the classroom or at competitions. It is very important for parents and dancers to represent their family at AIDA well at all times. Please be aware with competing comes additional competition fees. Those competing are strongly encouraged to attend 2 classes a week.