Glencastle Irish Dancers, Inc. offers Irish dance instruction to both children and adults at our studio in Franklin, Wisconsin. We are a dance school that offers many aspects of Irish dance including competition, solo and team dancing, performances, and learning the traditions of the Irish culture- all while having a great time. Our staff firmly believes that our families are top priority. You choose the level of involvement that is right for you. Some students may want to simply learn a few steps while others look forward to the thrill of stepping out on stage to perform or compete. We strive to instill a sense of belonging, friendship, school spirit and confidence in each and every student that enters our classroom.
How we got our name
Glencastle is a small town in County Mayo, Ireland near Belmullet and is the ancestral home of our owner and instructor, Bridget Jaskulski. Bridget’s great grandparents were raised in Glencastle and immigrated to the United States in the late 1800’s. As a tribute to her family, Bridget chose Glencastle as the name of our school.
How we got our start
Glencastle Irish Dancers, Inc. has been providing Irish dance lessons in the Milwaukee area since February 23, 2000. Our children's classes began at the College Park School in Greendale, Wisconsin and our adult classes began at the Celtic MKE Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Our school opened with 26 students and has grown to over 150 students. In 2006, we relocated to a space in West Allis, Wisconsin and remained there for eleven years. In the summer of 2017, we transitioned to a beautiful space in Franklin, Wisconsin.
Bridget Jaskulski, TCRG
Bridget has been teaching Irish dance for over 30 years. She started lessons at the age of 6 with the Shamrock Club Irish Dancers under the direction of Dr. Mary Eileen Geary, TCRG and later was a student and instructor at the Trinity Academy of Irish Dance. She competed in local, regional, national and world competitions. In 1987, she attended the World Championships of Irish Dance in Galway, Ireland where she was a member of a team that received a gold medal. She returned to the World Championships in 1988 where she competed as a solo dancer. Bridget loves to share her passion of Irish dance with her students and has seen great success with dancers of all ages in performances, solo and team dancing. Bridget received her TCRG certification in 1998. Bridget also serves as the Vice President of Celtic MKE and is the Secretary of the Milwaukee Feis Society.
Colleen has been with Glencastle Irish Dancers since its inception in 2000. She has competed at both regional and national competitions on ceili teams, and began assisting with classes in 2009. She now serves as the Performance Coordinator for Glencastle and enjoys sharing her love of performance with both dancers and audience members. She is a graduate of UW-Milwaukee with a degree in K-12 Theatre Education and is the Theatre Director at Wauwatosa East High School.
Colleen Nichol, TCRG
Colleen began dancing with Glencastle in 2001 and throughout her career competed as a soloist and on ceili teams at Regional and National competitions, ultimately reaching the Championship level of competition. She has a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Physiology and a Doctorate of Physical Therapy from Marquette University. Colleen passed her TCRG exam in September 2016. Colleen is the Curriculum Coordinator for Glencastle.
Kelly has been in the Irish dance world for over 35 years. She started dancing at the age of eight with the Trinity Academy of Irish Dance. She competed in regional, national, and world championships in solo and team dancing, ultimately receiving a gold medal in Dance Drama in 1990. She was a founding member of the Trinity Irish Dance Company performing overseas as well as appearing on "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson" in 1991. Kelly has been teaching for Glencastle since 2001, teaching all levels from beginners through adults as well as performance and team dancing. Kelly is married to her husband Adrian and works at the Milwaukee VA Hospital as a registered nurse that specializes in Palliative and Hospice Care.
Katie Simet Braunreiter, TCRG
Katie has been teaching Irish Dance since the age of 15. She taught classes side by side with Bridget at the Trinity Academy of Irish Dance. She passed her TCRG exam in 2008, making her a certified Irish dance instructor. Her experience as a K-8 educator and her passion for Irish dance have led her to design various Irish dance creative movement curriculums for new dancers. By day, Katie works at Marquette University in academic support for student-athletes.
Megan Sinclair, TCRG
Megan has been dancing with Glencastle Irish Dancers since the school's foundation in 2000. She reached the Open Championship level of competition and competed as a soloist and team dancer at the Regional, National, All-Ireland, and World Championships before retiring in 2012. She has been teaching with Glencastle since 2009 and currently serves as the school's Beginner Coordinator. In 2016, she passed her TCRG examination making her a certified Irish dance teacher. She is a graduate of Fordham University in New York with a B.S. in Psychology and UW-Milwaukee with a Master's in Public Health. When not at Glencastle, Megan works at St. Camillus as their Foundation Development Officer.
"I danced with Glencastle because it felt like one big family. With them I learned the value of being respectful to my fellow classmates and competitors, that results only come with hard work and determination, and the importance of supporting one another as we worked to achieve our goals."
Glencastle is an amazing dance school. My daughter is not only learning Irish Dance, but she is also growing more confident and independent. As a parent juggling many extracurricular activities for my children I appreciate the staff's clear and consistent communication. The response is always quick and professional. Joey is truly a GID kid and couldn't be happier!
Mother of Dancer
"Bridget and the instructors were incredibly supportive and caring of all of their students, and they continue to be so to this day. I've seen students transform from shy, quiet kids to confident, poised, and ambitious young adults through their Glencastle experiences."