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Jewish Black Youth Wins Third Irish Dance Competition


Drew Lovejoy (center)

Drew Lovejoy (center)
Photo Credit: dailyadvocate

What’s a good Jewish Press Story for the Irish national day of beer and more beer? We’ve got one for you! It’s about Drew Lovejoy, 17, from Greenville, Ohio, who is the son of a black Baptist from Georgia and a white Jewish mother from Iowa. But his fame is international, after winning the all-Ireland dancing championship in Dublin for a third straight year.

According to the NY Times, Drew has been dancing since the age of six, but neither he, nor his mother, can remember when he first became interested in Irish dance. It certainly had something to do with the musicals he’d been watching, also since age six.

Later, when Drew watched his first Irish dance competition in Indianapolis, he found the part tap, part ballet dancing irresistible.

But his mother, Andee Goldberg, didn’t think it was possible for him to become part of the Irish dance world. “You’re biracial and you’re a Jew,” she told him, and she later admitted, “We thought you had to be Irish and Catholic.”

Nevertheless, in 2010 Drew became the first person of color to win the World Championships.

Drew Lovejoy is so driven that he once danced an entire competition on seven broken toes. Dedication!

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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