Dancer Michael Flatley

Celebrities, Celebrity Q&A, People
on February 3, 2002

I saw a program on television about the history of Irish dance and was captivated by Michael Flatley. Is he still performing?
—Ruth U., New Jersey

Michael Flatley, 43, toured the country last summer with his latest production called Feet of Flames, reported to be his final tour. The U.S. leg was part of a world tour, which drew rave reviews and massive crowds to see Flatley and his 50-plus dance troupe. Flatley was born in Chicago following his parents' emigration from Ireland, where he also spent much of his childhood. He first attended dance school at age 11 and later became the first American to win the World Irish Dance Championships. He came to prominence in 1994 as the lead dancer for Riverdance. After departing the production, he created and starred in the successful Lord of the Dance, which debuted in 1996 and continues with several touring dance productions. He holds the Guinness World Record for tapping with 35 taps in one second. A man of many talents, Flatley was once an amateur boxer and also is an award-winning flutist. He won the All-Ireland Flute Championship in 1975.