Sean Og Set Dancing Festival

set dancing in the Longford Arms

The Sean Óg Annual Set Dancing festival is a weekend packed with all that is great in Irish traditional and country music, song and dance. The highlight of the years set dancing weekends around the country , it draws huge crowds from all over Ireland and abroad. Craic agus Ceoil abounds on what is always an exciting and fun filled weekend.

Set dancing is a form of social dancing which has been popular in Ireland for over 150 years. Sets are danced by four couples in a square, and usually consist of three to six figures with a short pause between each. They are descended from the French quadrilles, which were brought to Ireland by the British army in the nineteenth century. Irish dancers adapted the figures to their own music and steps to form dances with great drive and enjoyment. After a period of decline in the fifties and sixties, sets are very popular today in Ireland and in Irish communities throughout the world.

Sean Nós Dancing is an old style traditional form of dancing which was danced all over Ireland before the 1900s but Connemara, on the west coast of Ireland, held it well as they did with their Irish speaking. Seán Nós dancing is very rhythmic and is normally danced to a single musician, therefore both the musician and the footwork is heard. Very relaxed and similar to tap dance, but not like the step dancing you see in productions of big Irish dance shows like ‘Lord of the Dance’ and ‘River Dance’. It is low to the ground, and stepping out to the music. The body moves loosely to the music and the arms are held away from the body to add style and tradition to this style of dancing. In the early days, Seán Nós Dancing was performed on doors or tables as the floors were made from dry clay. It was often danced with four pints of stout on each corner and the best dancer had to dance as well as he could without spilling the stout. The winner got to drink what was left in the glass. The Sean Óg Festival incorporates this tradition in to their programme of events for the weekend. If you’re looking for good music, fun and friends resulting in the kind of joy you probably haven’t experienced since childhood then the Longford Arms Hotel and the Sean Óg Set Dancing Festival is the place to be.

Venue: Longford Arms Hotel
Contact: Gabriel Cassidy & Gerard Butler
Tel: 00353 (0)86 1522614/ 086 8986004


County Longford Tourism Office Market Square, Longford, Ireland    Phone: +353 (0)43 33 42577 +353 (0)85 8888876    Email: