DANE McKiernan is choreographer and lead dancer in Rhythm of the Dance which comes to Preston’s Charter Theatre next week.

He has been dancing since he was six and began touring the world in 2007 with the National Dance Company of Ireland’s Rhythm of the Dance.

In 2009 he joined the show Riverdance and in 2012 was part of the modern Irish dance group Prodijig which won Sky TV’s show Got to Dance, touring with them in their show Footstorm before returning to Rhythm of the Dance in 2014.

As he prepares to bring the UK tour to Lancashire, Dane took time out from his hectic schedule to answer a few questions.

What do you like best about being in Rhythm of the Dance?

I really enjoy having a creative outlet with the choreography and watching the show come alive every night onstage.

What’s your favourite part of the show?

The opening number Newgrange at Dawn – it starts with acapella rhythms and builds to a full company routine with the band. It definitely wakes up the leg muscles and lets them know they have another two hours to go!

What do you like most about touring?

I love to travel and we get to see new places almost every day. It’s only after a couple of years you start to become familiar with some places you would have probably never thought to visit.

Tell us five things you couldn’t live without when you’re on the road

1) Headphones! Music is life, especially when you’re travelling every day; it can feel like twice the duration of the journey when you’ve misplaced your headphones! 2) Coffee – you can never have enough energy to burn during a two hour show and, after being on the tour bus for a couple of hours, a cup of decent coffee is top priority for most of the cast.

3) My phone! I have to remember to pack a spare charger and it’s always best to have a fully charged power bank with you for long journeys or there’ll be no music or TV series to enjoy!

4) Home comforts – if you’re away for months at a time you miss the simple things like a decent cup of tea…after years of first hand research I’ve come to learn that Ireland has the best milk. Fact!

5) Travel pillow/blanket. We really do spend a lot of time travelling so comfort is essential. On long journeys the tour bus will be a sea of limbs and different coloured blankets while everyone gets some rest.

And finally what’s the audience reaction like when you’re onstage?

I love to watch the audience reaction throughout the show, especially after the opening scene because for the first time you get to see if they are going to be a vocal or reserved crowd.

Depending on the country or region, some audiences are especially vocal whereas others are quite reserved until the end of the show. The world tour we just completed had standing ovations after every single show and that’s just the best feeling after performing for two hours.

When the audience are enjoying the show, it definitely lifts the cast on stage to perform at the highest level; it’s all about creating that energy every night!

Rhythm of the Dance, Charter Theatre, Preston, Thursday, August 2. Details from 01772 804444 or www.prestonguildhall.co.uk