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Conor Simpson shows off the moves which helped him claim the World Irish Dance Championship title.
Conor jigs his way to crown
A 20-year-old Canberra man fended
off competitors from across the globe
to scoop the World Irish Dance
Championship title in Montreal earlier
Pearce resident Conor Simpson
took out the trophy after earning top
marks from five of the seven judges at
Conor said his athleticism and his
rhythmic step gave him the winning
"As a dancer, you must be very fit so
that you can finish the dance like you
start it," he said.
A seasoned competitor, it was the
eighth time Conor, who began dancing
at the age of nine, had competed in the
His mother Monica, who owns the
Simpson Academy of Irish Dance,
said although it initially took some
bribing, Conor discovered he had lots
"He's just a natural. He's done very,
very well," she said.
Monica said watching her son
compete and win at the world
championships was particularly
exciting, given only about six other
Australians had won the competition
in its long history.
"The atmosphere was just electric,''
There was all the excitement of
everyone being there, and this is a big
thing for Australia."
Prior to the event, Conor was
juggling his studies towards a double
degree in economics and finance at
ANU, where he is a straight-A student
and training for the world
He spent his summer holidays in
Ireland preparing to compete on the
"All the best male competition is
over there so it really helps your
preparation," Conor said.
"Leading up to the world
championship, I trained five days a
week and also did pilates and yoga to
help my flexibility.
"Now that the worlds are over I will
concentrate on uni."
Despite the full-time study load,
Conor said he was keen to compete
again and defend his title at the
upcoming world championship in
Glasgow next year.
1 The Canberra Toy and
Hobby expo takes place on
Sunday from 9am to 3pm at
Kaleen High School. The event
will feature Lego mini figures,
die-cast vehicles and model
railways, among much more.
See ashow.com.au for further
2 Watch the new Avengers
movie on the big screen, all
for a good cause. In support of
the Canberra team for Camp
Quality's esCarpade, Limelight
Cinemas at Tuggeranong
Hyderdome will host the film
at 8pm on Wednesday. Tickets
from opc.com.au. To support
Canberra's Sh*tbox rally team,
Avengers: Age of Ultron will
air at Palace Electric in New
Acton on Friday at 6.30pm.
3 An Anzac Day concert will
be held at the National
Carillion on Saturday from
4pm to 6.30pm. Carillionist
Lyn Fuller will lead a small
team of musicians for the
4 Live on-stage at the
Canberra Theatre in a
Monkey . . . Journey to the
West is based on a Chinese
classic and remembered by
generations of Australians
from the 70's cult TV show
Monkey Magic. Join monkey
and friends in an adventure,
and see a spectacular
performance of comedy,
music, song and spectacular
martial arts from Thursday to
Sunday. Tickets from $35 from
5 Get on board a behind-
the-scenes tour of
Parliament House as part of
the Canberra and Region
Heritage Festival until Sunday.
View areas not normally
accessible by the public and
hear how the ''people's
house'' was designed from the
very beginning to symbolise
national qualities, attributes,
aspirations and achievements.
Aspects of these are woven
into the very structure of the
building which was designed
to last 200 years. To book, or
for more information, visit
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