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PHOTOS – Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project “Our Time To Shine”






Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project Jam 2014: “Our Time To Shine”





Pictured: Project Founders Dr Elizabeth O’Mahony, Paediatric Neurology Consultant  and Barry Burke, Dance Teacher. Picture by Chris Luszczki.

Pictured: Project Founders Dr Elizabeth O’Mahony, Paediatric Neurology Consultant and Barry Burke, Dance Teacher. Picture by Chris Luszczki.

The Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Jam 2014 took place on Wednesday 18th of June at UL Sports Arena from 4.30pm-6.30pm.  This FREE EVENT was open to all and will be the culmination of the celebration of Hip Hop which will took place around the Special Olympics, involving young people of mixed abilities from various communities in Limerick City who participate in the Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project.  All were welcome to join in this huge dance party!

The Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Jam 2014 is supported by Limerick City of Culture and Enable Ireland and featured many national and international hip hop stars, as well as local young people.  Lead by local hip hop dancer Barry “BazzyB” Burke, the line up included the internationally renowned BadTasteCru from the UK, plus San Francisco dance artists Michelle “Mystique” Lukmani and Chris “Fluid Girl” Young, all of whom are in Limerick rehearsing for a hip hop theatre adaptation of “The Táin”, which opens at The Milk Market in July.  

Topping off this top class line-up was the inspirational US dancer Tommy Gunns Ly, who has overcome adversity to set up Ill Abilities, an international hip hop crew made up of dancers with various physical limitations.

The Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project was set up in September 2013 by Dr Elizabeth O’Mahony, Paediatric Neurology Consultant at University Hospital Limerick and Barry Burke, Dance Teacher, with the aim of reducing the segregation experienced by young people with disabilities as well as young people from marginalised areas of the city.  Through hip hop, the Project provides a fun social activity that all young people – those with mixed abilities and their peers, siblings and friends – can enjoy together.  Classes take place all around the city in schools, halls and youth centres, including Moyross, Ballinanty, West End and Southhill, as well as in Down Syndrome Limerick and UL Sports Arena.
In addition, with the support of the University of Limerick, Enable Ireland and St Gabriel’s, Dr Elizabeth O’Mahony and Áine O’Dea, Senior Occupational Therapist St Gabriel’s, have been researching the effects of dance intervention on children with mixed abilities including Autism, Developmental Co-ordination Disorder and ADHD.  Reflecting on the research, Dr O’Mahony says “The positive effects of this type of dance that includes dance steps, gymnastics and acrobatics are evident even after a few sessions.  The children are growing in confidence and self-esteem, while the added benefits of improved motor planning and co-ordination skills can be taken out of the dance hall and into every day activities of daily living”.

Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project
 – The young people of the Limerick Hip Hop Intervention Project will also be performing at the Opening Ceremony of the Special Olympics 2014 on June 12th.  In addition, many of these young people will also be providing dance entertainment for athletes, families and friends on Saturday June 14th at the Olympic Village at UL.

Tommy Gunns Ly: This is US professional dancer Tommy Gunns Ly’s second trip to Limerick, following a successful visit in 2013.  Tommy Gunns Ly is the Director of Hip Hop dance crew “Ill Abilities”, which is made up of dancers with various physical limitations.  Tommy is the inspirational leader of this group, having lost a leg to bone cancer in recent years.  In spite of this challenge, Tommy enjoys great success internationally in his own right and with his Ill-Abilities Cru.  See for further details. 

The Táin – Hip Hop dance theatre production in Limerick this summer
 – This summer, an exciting and innovative production of The Táin will be performed at The Milk Market from 20-25 July.  Choreographed by Barry “BazzyB” Burke and professional hip hop theatre company BadTasteCru, this hip hop adaptation of the epic Irish tale will add a whole new dimension to theatre for Limerick audiences. Further details from 





Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.

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