Levels of Irish Dancing
Beginner Category: A beginner is a competitor who has not taken Irish dancing lessons from a registered teacher prior to September 1st of the previous year. A Beginner dancer must move into Advanced Beginner the following year.
Advanced Beginner Category: An Advanced Beginner is a dancer who has taken lessons from a registered teacher for more than 1 year. An Advanced Beginner who wins a 1st, 2nd or 3rd place in each dance will advance to the Novice category in that particular dance.
Novice Category: A Novice dancer is one who has previously won a 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place in Advanced Beginner. A novice who wins a 1st place will advance to the Prizewinner category in that particular dance.
Prizewinner Category: A prizewinner dancer is a dancer who has previously won a 1st in Novice in a particular dance. A dancer must place 1st in one light shoe dance; Reel or Slip jig (girls only) and one hard shoe dance; Treble Jig or Hornpipe and consistently place 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in other dances in Prizewinner to qualify for Preliminary Championship.
Preliminary Championship- A dancer advances to Preliminary Championship after he/she has won 1st place in both a prizewinner light and hard shoe competition, and consistently placed 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in all other dances. Preliminary dancers who win 3 first places in a calendar year, must move to Open Championship the following calendar year. When a third 1st place win is achieved over several calendar years, the dancer must move to Open Championship the following weekend. (Mid-Atlantic Region Rule, all other regions require 2 first places).
Open Championship- This is the highest level you can get too - This is an amazing accomplishment.
A dancer moves to Open Championship after winning three 1st places in Preliminary Championship.