Blind girl (12) learned to Irish dance after The Fairytale of New York lit ‘a fire in her’

Taaliyah has always loved Ireland and the music inspired her to try Irish dancing, her proud mum Ellie told sundayworld.com.


Maeve McTaggartSunday World

A young blind girl has learned to Irish dance after being inspired by The Pogues’ hit The Fairytale of New York.

Taaliyah (12) from Huddersfield in West Yorkshire lives with optic atrophy, though her mum Ellie told sundayworld.com that her teen “has a fire in her."

Taaliyah loves Ireland and The Pogues’ famous Christmas tune, the music eventually leading her to Irish dancing.

She was helped by her dance teacher Rebecca Kane, who taught Taaliyah her first routine in just four weeks.

Her teacher Rebecca, a former British, world and All-Ireland champ, "really put in the effort with Taaliyah,” Ellie said, who welcomed her into her school with open arms.

A love of Ireland brought Taaliyah to Irish dancing after she and her mum heard about Irish dancing classes.

"It all started with The Fairtytale of New York,” she adds. “Taaliyah loved it, she loves Irish music and is obsessed with Ireland – she doesn’t stop talking about it!”

Despite having no Irish roots, the teen has always loved Ireland and it is “her dream” to visit one day with her sisters.

“She can draw the complete outline of Northern Ireland,” Ellie added. “And she has taught herself to to play Irish songs on the keyboard.

"She has always been into music and the keyboard, but Irish dancing is her first big achievement – she has never done anything like it before.

"She’s absolutely amazing,” her proud mum gushed. “She doesn’t anything bother her. She has a fire in her.”

She recently danced to The Pogues’ Christmas chart-topper at a local event to turn on the Christmas lights.

"Taaliyah is never nervous, she says it is easy for her she loves it so much,” Ellie adds.

The teen now set her sights on her next local performance in February.

"She is learning The Blackbird,” Ellie explained. “And it’s hard but Taaliyah will do it, she loves it.”

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