Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra Dance Workshop

Sign up now for the Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra Dance Workshop which will take place on Sunday, 3 December 2023 in the Kevin Barry Room in the National Concert Hall, Dublin from 10am – 5pm. The workshop will be led by Mary Collins, a leading Early Dance specialist. There is no fee to take part in the workshop.

Who can take part?

  • The workshop is open to dancers, aged 16 – 24 from any dance background who have an interest in learning more about Baroque dance.

Apply online via our application form which you can find here

If you have any questions, please contact Jack at

There is also the further opportunity of potentially taking part in the Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra Performance Course 2024. The IYBO 2024 course takes place from Monday 15 to Saturday 20 July 2024. The fee for this course will be €250. There are limited places available for dancers for the performance course, so a place is not guaranteed. In 2024, the IYBO will be performing Handel’s Water Music. When filling in the application form please indicate your availability for the IYBO summer course.

Please note: By signing up for this workshop in December you are confirming that you are available to take part in the summer course if a place is offered to you.

Mary explains: 

“This is an exciting opportunity for dancers to expand their skills and future career opportunities. The course will not only provide a grounding in the sophistication and subtlety of Baroque dance but will offer the opportunity for all participants to be selected to take part in a unique production at St Patrick’s Hall in Dublin Castle as part of Dublin HandelFest. This is a rare chance to experience the dance style that led directly into classical ballet, a style which is, in many ways, more akin to contemporary dance technique. The historic performance in St Patrick’s Hall will take this genre right back to its original setting; the exquisite ballroom served as the 18th century ‘red carpet’ venue for all baroque ‘A-listers’ who would assemble to be seen and to show off their dancing skills – social media at its 18th century best!

Both baroque dance and music repertoires have often been underestimated, judged as being ‘dull’ and ‘stuffy’ but current research has uncovered the truth – this was the club setting for young people at a time when Handel was ’cool’ and dancing played a huge part in your social life – whether it was launching yourself into society, flirting at a fashionable ball or watching celebs dancing on the stage which you could copy later to look cool.”

Dance Workshop Details:

Date: Sunday, 3 December 2023.

Time: 10am – 5pm (with an hour for lunch at 1pm), lunch not provided.

Location: Kevin Barry Room, National Concert Hall, Dublin.

About Mary Collins:

Mary Collins is an Early Dance specialist whose research and teaching approach has inspired musicians to look afresh at the dance music that is at the heart of the Baroque repertoire bringing, in turn, a fresh perspective on the great composers of the Baroque era. A practitioner and researcher, she has worked with dance, theatre, and TV companies as an adviser, choreographer, dancer, and actress and tours regularly giving master classes, lecture-recitals, and workshops. A faculty member of Aestas Musica in Croatia, the Austria Barokakademie and, for 26 years, the Ringve International Summer Course in Norway, she regularly collaborates with many of the world’s leading exponents of early music.

Reviving original choreography and gesture for historical performance, Mary promotes a vibrant, multi-disciplinary approach to music making, valued by artists and audiences alike. A practitioner and researcher, she performs regularly with the London Handel Players and Florilegium, giving master classes, lecture recitals, and workshops to dancers and musicians throughout the world. Mary teaches at the Royal Academy of Music and Royal College of Music in London, and also as a guest at the University of Birmingham. She is often invited to work with orchestras, most recently the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Southbank Sinfonia.

Learn more about Mary and her extensive career on her website

The Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra is a collaboration between the Irish Baroque Orchestra and the Irish Association of Youth Orchestras.