Irish dancing has been enjoying renewed popularity in recent years, largely due to Irish dance stage shows like Riverdance and Lord of the Dance.
The nature of the Irish dance tradition has changed and adapted over the centuries to accommodate and reflect changing populations and the fusion of new cultures. The history of Irish dancing is as a result a fascinating one. [Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/irish/articles/view/741/english/]
Much of what we now call Traditional Irish music originated in the Gaelic speaking peasantry of the 18th Century.
Dancing was very popular at weddings and other social events. Up until the early 20th Century, the practice of dancing masters travelling from town to town with a fiddler or piper, and giving dance classes was common. In rural Ireland, dancing at the crossroads was still very popular towards 1950.