Fiddling and Stepdancing Family Act – The Ballagh Bunch

Ballagh Promo Ward RobertsonThe Ballagh Bunch is a group of lively, energetic performers, who put on numerous shows containing Irish, Celtic, Scottish and traditional Canadian music styling’s. With a variety of musical instruments, such as fiddles, drums, guitar, vocals, feet and much more, the Ballagh’s put on a thrilling and captivating show that is sure to please everyone with its unique variety. The three older siblings, Devan, Michael and Paige, have obtained multiple step dance titles, including the Canadian Open Step Dance Champions in both group and solo classes.

This award winning group starred in an eight week run of Drayton Entertainments production of “Canadian Loonie”, which was then followed by a sequel to the show entitled “Sorry I’m Canadian”. This show had raving reviews, and was summarized by one who said the show left you “unapologetically uplifted and sorry it’s time to go”. The show played in 2006, 2008, and was brought back for the third time this past summer. Between July and August, the bunch performed 64 shows with performances in both Dunfield Theatre Cambridge, and Playhouse II in Grand Bend.

The Ballagh Bunchy have been performing as a group for 10 years, and have performed at various theatres, festivals and fairs throughout this time. They have represented Canada for four consecutive years on the international stage at the Canadian National Exhibit in Toronto. They have also performed crowd-pleasing shows on the main stage in Downtown Disney, Florida. They were featured as main entertainment at the International Plowing Match, and were regular guests on the theatre presentation of Fiddle and Step. In the summer of 2011, the group was showcased as special guests at theShelburne Canadian Fiddle Championship. They started off the main stage show at the Summerfolk Festival in the summer of 2012.

The Ballagh Bunch continues to tour with their music. Their first tour was in the summer of 2009 to the west coast. There, they kicked off their tour with a few dance and fiddle camps, and wrapped it up with a dynamic performance atCeltfest, in Nanaimo, B.C. They have also completed three consecutive tours across the Maritimes, which included sold out performances at the Mirimichi Opry, a highly demanded show in the LER theatre at the infamousBonami festival, New Brunswick, and co-headlined theTignish Irish festival, PEI, with the Irish Descendants and Rawlins Cross. Their creative rhythms and arrangements, along with the visible joy of making music together, make their performance quality second to none.

These performers are acclaimed for teaching skills at their home studio, “The Ballagh’s School of Dance, Fitness, and Music”, and are all accomplished choreographers and composers of step dance. The love for composing has also come through in their music, and their show features original material and arrangements.

The Ballagh kids are second generation performers, inheriting the step dance skills from the mother Janice McMichael, of the McMichael sisters, who were also accomplished dancers. They were referred to as ‘Canada’s step dancing sweethearts”, originally named by the late great Graham Townsend. They were guests on the Tommy Hunter Show, and have performed in places such as theMiami Fiddle Festival, Carmen Fiddle Festival, Dartmouth Old Tyme Festival, Fiddles of the Worldand numerous performances in New York State.

The undeniable family dynamics, toe-tapping energy, and sprinkles of humor are sure to leave you wanting more.

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