Born in Birmingham, England to Irish parents, Rachael started her dance journey at the age of 5 under Sylvia Murphy-Brennan and then Kevin & Helena McCarron at the McCarron School of Irish dance. It was these teachers who instilled a love and passion for our beautiful art form.
Throughout Rachael’s competitive career she consistently placed top 5 at major championships, achieving many titles along the way most notably British National Champion, Midland Regional Oireachtas Champion (7 years consecutively), and top 5 at Worlds 3 times, but she is most proud of achieving 4th place at the World Championships, a day she will never forget.
Rachael carried her love of Irish dance right into her audition for Riverdance and booked her first professional job as troupe dancer for the 10th anniversary tour in Japan & Taiwan. From there she went on to tour with many shows such as Celtic Legends, Danu and Ciaran Nagle of the Irish Tenors, and Rockin’ Road to Dublin. She performed the lead role in Busch Gardens shows Irish Thunder and Emerald beat and topped off her performing days as Dance Captain and female lead of the award-winning show Celtic Fyre.
Whilst performing in shows, Rachael studied and sat her TCRG exam, passing with honors, and has enjoyed teaching ever since!
Jennifer began Irish dance lessons at age 3, following in her mother's and grandmother's footsteps who were also Irish dancers.
As a champion solo dancer she placed consistently in the top 5 at the regional Oireachtas including a 1st place solo title at age 13 and a top 10 National ranking. She qualified for the World Championships every year and competed at the event in both solos and teams 3 times. She is also proud to have danced on several 1st place ceilis, choreographies and dramas over the years.
Jennifer remembers fondly her years dancing under the instruction of Paula Woodgate, as well as the many workshop instructors who shared their passion for dance: Mark Howard, Michael Stanley, Rose Ellis, Gordon McMahon, and James MacCutcheon.
In high school Jennifer began assisting with dance classes and quickly developed a great love for teaching. She obtained her TCRG certification in 2007 after college graduation and has been teaching ever since!
As a teacher Jennifer found much inspiration and guidance in workshop instructor Caroline Devaney, whose energetic, motivational and disciplined style of teaching left a lasting impression on her.
Since age 6 Erin has dedicated countless hours to her love of Irish culture.
As a champion level solo dancers she achieved much success including a 3rd place in her solos at the regional Oireachtas. Erin has competed at the Nationals and World Championships in both solos and teams.
During college, Erin studied abroad in Galway, Ireland where, in addition to her studies, she also attended dance classes weekly. While abroad she competed at the All Ireland Championships and earned a 4th place solo ranking!
Erin became a certified Irish dance teacher (TCRG) in 2009 and has enjoyed teaching the dancers for many years! Erin also helps coordinate all of the school's performances throughout the year.
Kelly began dancing at age 13 when she accompanied her younger sister to her trial class. She got bit by the Irish Dance bug and never looked back. Kelly has competed all over the Northeast and Canada. When she started college she was asked to start teaching beginners and has continued to do so since then. In her last role, Kelly taught a strength training class to young Irish Dancers striving to elevate their athleticism. Kelly's favorite part of Irish Dance is progress, there's no feeling like working hard and seeing the rewards.
Kelly has loved being able to spread her love of Irish Dance throughout the Buffalo area and has felt very lucky to find a home at Clann Na Cara.
Ursula began dance lessons at age 3 in her hometown of Ballybofey, Co. Donegal, Ireland. She danced for the renowned Aodh Rua school and enjoyed an impressive career, placing top 10 at the Ulster, All Ireland, All Scotland, British National, Great Britain and World Championships.
At age 19, Ursula joined the cast of Riverdance and started an unforgettable 6 year journey performing in sold out theaters world wide, and appearing on countless international TV programs and events.
Ursula returned home, acquired her teacher and adjudicator certificates and opened her school. She has judged all over the World including the 2016 World Championships in Glasgow. We are lucky to have Ursula's experience and expertise on hand during her US visits!