The Irish Dancing Teachers Association of North America (IDTANA) was born in March, 1964 when Mae Butler, Fedelmia Davis, Kevin McKenna, Peter Smith, Cyril McNiff and Anna O’Sullivan met at the Irish Institute in New York City.  They came together with the goal of assuring teacher and adjudicator competency, as well as standardizing the ever growing number of feisanna throughout North America. 


The surviving founders of the IDTANA: Anna O'Sullivan, Peter Smith, and Fidelmia Davis are still active members and were recently voted lifetime positions on the IDTANA Executive Board.


Since that small humble beginning, and through the efforts of many dedicated Irish Dance Teachers throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico, the IDTANA has grown now to nearly 650 members - with over 100 members in Canada, 550 members in the United States, and one member in Mexico.  The IDTANA consists of seven regional branches: Mid Atlantic, Mid America, Western US, Eastern Canada, Western Canada, New England and Southern US.  


The IDTANA operates in tandem with An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha in Dublin, Ireland.   All members of the IDTANA must be registered and certified as a TMRF, TCRG or ADCRG by An Coimisiun.   Additionally, North America currently has 23 voting members of An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha, which includes the 7 Regional Directors along with two elected members of each Region, the IDTANA Executive Board, and the elected North American Vice Presidents of An Coimisiun.


The emphasis of the IDTANA is to promote Irish Dance throughout North America.  Through continued cooperation with the North American Feis Commission, each region regulates Feiseanna in their area with a standardized syllabus of competitions and rules.  


Annually, the IDTANA sponsors the North American Irish Dance Championships during the first week of July.  The "Nationals", as they have become known as, is recognized as North America's  secondary qualifying event for the annual World Championships held each year around Easter and sponsored by An Coimisiun le Rince Gaelacha.  The primary qualifying event for dancers to qualify for the World Championships is their Regional Oireachtasi held in November and December each year.


ASURINT Screening/Vetting for IDTANA U.S. Members


Current & New members that have not gone through the Screening/Vetting  process as of yet are required to have the proper documentation for the 2015 CLRG Registration period.

The On-line Portal address is: and the pass code: dance

  • Those teachers having previously received Hireright reference numbers, confirmed by CLRG, will not have to go through the process this time.

  • Those teachers who have, as a result of their occupation or other activities with children or vulnerable persons, gone through an accredited screening process (which will have to be verified by presentation of documentary evidence) may not have to go through this process at this time, but should contact John Hennigan at for clarification. 

We anticipate the system for Canadian, Mexican & South American members will be operational very soon.




The IDTANA has been sponsoring the Cyril McNiff Memorial Scholarship Program, awarding academic scholarships, for over 25 years. The current committee, which includes one designated representative from each of the seven regions of North America, has been in place for the past 10 years. They are responsible for evaluating scholarship application materials and scoring each application according to a rubric process.

It should be noted that all committee members are volunteers and provide their time and expertise freely and without any remuneration. In the past few years, the number of applications has increased rather significantly, which is a welcome development. However, as a result, the amount and scope of the work of the committee has also increased significantly.  Further, in recent years, there have been inquiries from other IDTANA members who have expressed interested in possibly becoming involved in the work of the scholarship committee.  After discussing this concept with the Executive Board of the IDTANA, I am happy to extend to my fellow IDTANA members an invitation to self-nominate to serve on this year’s IDTANA Scholarship Committee:

  • The basic committee, which was originally set up to provide balanced regional representation for all seven North American regions, will remain in place as is. The goal for 2014 is to attempt to secure approximately 6-8 additional committee members. ·

  • Any IDTANA members who self-nominate to serve on this year’s scholarship committee will be integrated into the procedures and processes used by the committee to evaluate and rank scholarship applications. ·

  • Adding these additional committee members will allow the overall committee to spread the amount of work and responsibility over more individuals and make the completion of the assigned tasks more reasonable and equitable. ·

  • There are no specific requirements for anyone who self-nominates to serve on this year’s committee to have a specific individual background or career experience in order to be a part of the committee’s work and responsibilities. ·

  • Naturally, if a member has specific experience as an academic educator (elementary, secondary, collegiate), and/or perhaps involvement in educational admissions (schools, colleges), that would be helpful, but that is certainly NOT a requirement. ·

  • Any IDTANA member who would like to self-nominate to serve on this year’s scholarship committee must be a current paid member of the IDTANA, which also requires that the individual must be a current paid member of CLRG and a current paid member of his/her own North American region.

Any IDTANA member who would like to nominate himself/herself to serve on the 2014 Scholarship Committee should contact Russell J. Beaton, committee chairperson, by e-mail ( ), no later than March 25. Please include in your e-mail a clear indication of the North American region in which you are registered, as well as your CLRG membership number.


  We appreciate the use of the artwork of Cari Buziak: