Tallaght’s Got Talent

By Aura McMenamin

Ireland’s Got Talent saw representation from Tallaght by both young talent and seasoned performers last weekend.

The latest episode of the audition stage saw a dance troupe from Xquisite Dance School get the ‘golden buzzer’, meaning that they go straight through to the semi-finals.

Xquisite Dance 1

They follow the success of singing sensation Evelyn Williams from Tallaght who also got the ‘golden buzzer’ from judge Michelle Visage on Saturday Feb 3.

Saturday night’s episode also saw the audience and judges jam with 71-year-old Phillip Murphy, aka Mr Reggae, as he got four ‘yes’ votes from the judges.

The ten Xquisite dancers, the majority of whom are from Tallaght and ranging in ages from eight to 11, bowled over judges Louis Walsh, Jason Byrne, Michelle Visage and Denise van Outen.

The kids received a rapturous applause and standing ovation after their salsa routine to Taylor Swift’s “Shake it Off”.

Van Outen, who succumbed to audience pressure to press the golden buzzer, said their footwork was “brilliant”, while Ms Visage commented on their obvious passion and dedication.

Nicole Kelly is the founder of the Xquisite Dance Club school, which was originally based in Tallaght and is now on the Long Mile Road.

Ms Kelly, whose son Tadhg performed, told The Echo this week: “They usually just perform as couples so this was the first time they danced as a troupe.

“Getting the golden buzzer was overwhelming for the family and for the school.”

Ms Kelly said that for the kids, who are preparing for the Emerald Open international competition this weekend, dance “becomes a way of life”.

She said: “They train 4 to five days a week, they go to school then go to training, doing their homework in between.

“They have a real passion.”

Tallaght's Mr Reggae

Also performing on the night was Tallaght’s very own Bob Marley - Philip Murphy. The expert karaoke singer performed Gimme Hope Joanna which had the audience and judges on their feet and he is into the second round of performing for the judges.

Judge Michelle Visage said afterwards: “This is absolutely mad. We're sitting here in Ireland listening to a man singing the music of the Rastaferi and that was amazing Philip!"

facebook Linked Image Phil Murphy 07fina

Speaking to The Echo this week, Mr Murphy said: “I had the four judges up dancing - I enjoyed myself.”

Mr Murphy, from Avonbeg, previously made the news when he was pulled from appearing on the Late Late Show in October after winning a Karoke contest in Morton’s Pub in Firhouse.

Despite beating off competition of over 50 other contestants across Dublin, Philip was told that another contestant would appear on the RTÉ show.

Syesha Byrne Muprhy and Dylan Hawe from Empire Dance Tallaght will appear on this Saturday night’s episode as will Erika Hopkins from Clondalkin who is performing with Viva Dance.

See ‘Mr Reggae’ photos on page 64.

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