Owner & Director
Joseph began dancing, competing, and performing with Christine O’Riada of the O’Riada Academy of Irish dance in the early 90’s. His experience in all avenues of dance equips him to help each dancer succeed in their desired focus. Having qualified for, danced in, and placed at such elite competitions as the Midwest Regional Championships, North American Championships, All Ireland Championships, and the World Championships, Joseph brings a broad and all-encompassing knowledge of the competitive side of Irish dance to the O’Riada Manning Academy of Irish dance. Joseph’s highest placement as a soloist was 5th place at the World Championships. Additionally, he has experience performing with many world-renowned Irish groups, including: The Cheiftans, Irish Tenors, The Wolftones, Black 47, Cherish the Ladies, Eileen Ivers, Gaelic Storm, and The Elders, to name a few.
After assisting with all levels of classes under Christine O’Riada at the O’Riada Academy, Joseph earned his TCRG certification in 2010 from An Coimisuin le Rinci Gaelacha (The Irish Dance Commission based out of Dublin, Ireland). Joseph received his ADCRG certification six years after taking over the school, allowing him to judge Irish dance competitions.
Brian Brendan Frain, TCRG has been Irish dancing since he was five years old. His father’s family studied Irish dance in County Mayo, Ireland. After they moved to the United States, two of his aunts, Bea Bennett and Kathleen Carr, opened the Carr-Bennett School of Irish Dance in Philadelphia, PA. Brian was first trained in traditional Irish dance. Afterwards, he studied with Patricia O’Donnell, TCRG in Philadelphia, PA and Paul Tynan, TCRG in Houston, TX. After many years in competition, Brian received his certification from Coimisiun le Rinci Gaelacha in 1989 and opened his own school in two Philadelphia locations, ranging from beginners to open championship classes. After several years, Brian entered the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). Since then, he has assisted various schools (O’Shea-Jennings (NJ) and Dunleavy (NY) and coached candidates for TCRG certification. Currently, Brian assists on weekends at O’Riada Manning Academy of Irish Dance, Mission, KS studio. During the week, Brian is Assistant Professor of Education at Rockhurst University and the Director of their Catholic Studies program.
Hannah began dancing in 2003 under Christine O’Riada and enjoyed many years of performing and competing. Having performed in countless events across Kansas City and danced in regional and international competitions throughout the US, Canada, and Ireland, she loves to share her experience of Irish dance. Hannah received her TCRG certification from Coimisiun le Rinci Gaelacha after being an assistant teacher under Joseph for all classes from wee-ones through adult classes. Hannah is also a Licensed Physical Therapist Assistant and a personal trainer certified through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. This knowledge of health and fitness is invaluable to keep dancers injury free and enhance performance.
Also keeper of keys at Hogwarts…and the boss
T.C.R.G. & Founder
Originally from County Antrim, Northern Ireland, Christine trained, competed, performed, and taught in Ireland prior to coming to Kansas City and starting the O’Riada Academy of Irish dance.