Dawnswyr Gwerin Yr Afon Goch (The Red River Welsh Folk Dancers) is recognized world-wide for their unique performances of Irish and Welsh style dances. The school was established in Winnipeg in the fall of 1947 with no more than a dozen pupils, due to the small population of Irish in the community. Samuel and Sarah McConnell, immigrants from Northern Ireland, are the founders of the dance school.
Sam McConnell choreographed numerous CBC TV shows and local theatre productions. Many of the students from McConnell School of Dance have experienced successful careers in dance. The group has been part of CIOFF for over 40 years and perform over 60 shows each year both locally, nationally, and internationally. The dancers have performed at festivals in Peru, Costa Rica, Bulgaria, Ireland, and Walt Disney World in Florida.
Dawnswyr Gwerin Yr Afon Goch (The Red River Welsh Folk Dancers)have a unique, high caliber, performance-style dancing of both traditional and modern forms of Irish dance. Costumes for females include a full skirted dress often featuring lace and detailed patterns from the medieval period.