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Two attending Irish Dance World Championships
On April 13, two Irish dancers from the Hooley School of Irish Dance will be heading to London, England for the Irish Dancing World Championships. Gretchen Weidler and Angelina Glick, both of Lititz, qualified for the Worlds at the Mid-Atlantic Regionals held last November.
Gretchen Weidler, a junior at WarwickHigh School, competed at Worlds last year on a team, but this was her first time qualifying for the solos. Weidler’s goal at Regionals was to earn qualifying spot by placing in the top 20, but she surpassed her goal by earning an overall 8th place in the Under 17 age group at Regionals. Motivated to reach her highest potential at Worlds, Gretchen has dedicated herself to practicing 20+ hours a week.
“My day typically starts at 5 a.m., when I get up and practice 1-2 hours before leaving for school,” Weidler says. “I have dance classes at HooleySchool three to four nights a week, plus extra practices or competitions on weekends.”
Weidler has danced since she was five years old, and making it to the World Championships is a dream come true for her.
Angelina Glick, a WarwickHigh School graduate, will be competing in the World Championships for the second time. She qualified by placing 18th at Regionals and 27th at Nationals in the Senior Ladies age group. Last year Glick scored in the top two-thirds at the Worlds, and she is hoping to improve those results. Glick has decided to retire competitively after the World Championships, which has made this a bittersweet time for her.
“Competing has always been a big part of my life,” says Glick, “but I also love teaching. I’ve decided to use my training hours to instead help the new students at Hooley School of Irish Dance.”
The World Championships were previously always held in Ireland, but recently the location has been rotated among different countries to help accommodate the large amount of Irish dancers who are qualifying from all over the world. This year marks the first year that the United Kingdom will be hosting the championships. Nearly 5,000 Irish dancers are registered to compete in the World Championships held from April 13-20.