Riverdance Blog

Life on the road with Riverdance, Illinois to Kentucky, USA


by Fiona Mc Cabe, Irish Dance Troupe, Shannon Company

I am writing this from our Riverdance tour bus (Bus 1) from Waukegan, Illinois to Owensboro, Kentucky. We will have covered approximately 386 miles today to reach our new venue this afternoon.
After an early alarm call of 6:45am, we loaded up our suitcases and personal belongings to depart the hotel in Waukegan at 7.30am. We stopped for 30 minutes then at a rest stop at 12pm. After a brief drop off at the hotel we will go to the venue and head to catering which is normally provided for us on travel-show days like today.
Typically after eating, all the female cast will spend the next 30-40 minutes preparing for the show doing their own hair and make-up. At this stage we are all so experienced we could do it in our sleep!

Dancers Fiona McCabe and Jesse Baffa stretching prior to the show

We then change into dance tights and suitable warm-up clothing, typically tracksuit pants or leggings and light sweaters or tshirts.

At the one hour call (One hour prior to show time), we all do our individual warm-up on stage.

Some do yoga alone or in groups, some will skip to increase their cardiovascular fitness. Others will do some abdominal and core strengthening work and others will do upper body weights to stay in shape.

Today is like any other day for us. We will begin the task of preparing for the show in several hours.
At beginners call there will be a last minute rummage for dance shoes, elastics and electrical tape. The likelihood of laces snapping or tights ripping is as imminent as ever. The scent of tiger balm and bio freeze will fill the quick change room. The noise of saxophone scales and constant trebling and tapping will be as loud as ever. It is now ‘clearance’…We all rush to the teepees backstage like obeying children to the sound of a school bell. It’s Showtime……

To date on the Riverdance Tour USA 2011, we have travelled to and performed in 23 cities in over 11 states

Barry Lanham
February 9, 2011

Hello Fiona!
Caught your show in Owensboro, Kentucky last night. Bravo! I brought my dance troupe members to the show and they were all very impressed and could not stop talking about the experience. We even had the pleasure of meeting one of the guys in the cast by the name of “Caren”. He was very kind to take the time to speak with our troupe members who were about the same age as him. This will be an expereince that none of us will ever forget!

Sherry McNulty
February 27, 2011

Oh, Fiona! We can’t wait to see you next month in Colorado. My wee 8 year old admires all of you so…and hopes to be a part of a future generation of Riverdancers! Looking forward to it. All of you take care, get plenty of rest — it’s the mom in me talkin’!

March 5, 2011

I just saw Riverdance in Albany, NY last night. While I have seen it on television, it doesn’t compare to the powerful experience of seeing the show live. I just want to tell you and the entire cast that your obvious sacrifices and dedication are so appreciated by the public. I hope you all realiz

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