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Film / Lord of the Dance (1997)

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Dance, now wherever you may be. I am the lord of the dance, said he.

The Lord of the Dance is a 1997 musical play featuring a heap of Irish dancing. It was produced by Michael Flatley. No one is exactly sure what the story is about, but it is possible that it is about an Irish Jesus in purgatory, with a lot of Celtic mythology thrown in.

This play features examples of the following tropes:

  • A Father to His Men: Flatley comes across as this in his pre-show speeches on the DVDs. He is seen at one point telling his cast that they haven't come this far to come in second — and that they certainly won't come in second at that night's performance.
  • Armies Are Evil: The Dark Lord's army is definitely evil.
  • Badass Adorable: Little Spirit, particularly in the 2011 version. She jumps on Don Dorcha's back and beats him up just to get her penny whistle back!
  • Defeat Means Friendship: At the end of the play, the Dark Lord and his crew dance with the Lord of the Dance's clan.
  • Dream Sequence: The 2014 version makes it a little clearer that this is the premise of the show when Don Dorcha's face appears on a screen at the back of the stage. Little Spirit is lying asleep onstage at the time, but she reacts to his threatening words.
    Don Dorcha: "You can't have the dream without the nightmare."
  • MacGuffin: The Lord of the Dance's belt. No attention is ever called to it until the end of the show, wherein it seems to be what Don Dorcha was after all along.
  • Ms Fan Service: Plenty of this. Bras and everything.
    • The "Breakout" number is entirely this, even more so than the original version on Riverdance, and is known as the strip jig for a reason.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Don Dorcha the Dark Lord. He sounds like a perfectly well-balanced gentleman.
  • Our Fairies Are Different: The Little Spirit has no wings and the closest thing she has to a magic wand is her tin whistle.
  • Papa Wolf: Lord Michael to Little Spirit. He has particular shades of this in both the 1997 and 2011 version, stopping Don Dorcha from grabbing her after the duel, and using an arm to shield her as if to say, "stay back, it's OK, I've got this".
  • Recurring Riff: "Dance now, where ever you may be. I am the Lord of the Dance, said he."
  • Sissy Villain: Averted. It's very hard to be a dancing evil villain and not come across as this, but Don Dorcha and his army pull it off flawlessly.
  • Start My Own: Michael Flatley put together "Lord Of The Dance" after his attempt to negotiate for more creative control over Riverdance fell through and he was replaced by Colin Dunne in the Riverdance troupe. Of course, uh, there are certain allegations that it had something to do with Flatley's emphasis on fanservice. While this wiki reserves judgement, it is worth noting that the costumes for 'Breakout', the so-called 'strip jig', went from sports bras and athletics shorts to bikinis following the move to "Lord of the Dance."
  • The Vamp: Morrighan, the temptress.


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