Michael Flatley’s status as ‘Lord of the Dance’ may be under threat, with a couple of American priests taking the internet by storm with their Irish dancing.
The Rev. David Rider of Hyde Park, New York, and the Rev. John Gibson of Milwaukee, are studying in Rome. Earlier this year they took a break from their classes to take part in a fundraiser at the North American College, which is an elite American seminary near to the Vatican.
A number of priests stood on the stage and sang a song before Rev. Rider appeared and began tap dancing, much to the delight of the audience.
Not to be outdone his colleague Rev. Gibson pulled out the big guns and treated the crowd to some Irish dancing, drawing huge cheers.
Before long the two priests became embroiled in a dance off to the accompanying music. As the seemingly impromptu contest went on, both priests became more serious, removing their jackets and continuing their dances without music.
The video has gradually gone viral and at the time of writing has had well over 600,000 views.
Despite the popularity of the video, some have criticised the priests for being ‘disrespectful’ in dancing under the crucifix and in front of a portrait of Pope Francis.
However, Rev. Rider told AP press agency: “We would just refer them to the Bible where the Lord tells us to live with joy.”
The crowd certainly didn’t mind and gave both men huge round of applause at the end of the performances.