The dancer styled her blonde bob in coiffed curls, she applied a red lip and toted a clutch with a golden clasp to add the finishing touches of her look.
Michael and Niamh proved the fire of their love burned brightly still after all this time as they cuddled up to each other at the event.
Dazzling duo: The Lord Of The Dance sensation proudly paraded his elegant wife on his arm when they made their entrance to the star-studded bash
They embarked on a whirlwind romance in 2006 when they decided to get married four months after they started dating and their son Michael Jr was born a year later.
The happy couple tied the knot in a romantic ceremony in October and they hosted their reception at Castlehyde.
Michael bid farewell to the stage in 2016 after he took the world by storm with his Irish dancing skills on The Lord Of The Dance.
Perfect pair: Michael and Niamh proved the fire of their love burned brightly still after all this time as they cuddled up to each other at the event
The dancer decided it was time to make another change in June earlier this year when he put his luxurious Irish mansion Castle Hyde back on the market.
Castle Hyde was listed for $14.5 Million (£11 million) after it failed to sell at $23.2 million (£17.6 million) in 2015.
The price was reduced by 36 per cent, despite Michael spending about $35 million (£26.6 million) on rennovations.
Lord Of The Dance star Michael has spent 20 years living in the home he bought for $4.6 million (£3.4 million) in 1999.
Ravishing in red: Claire Sweeney looked incredibly leggy in her thigh-split scarlet dress as she attended the glamorous event among the stars
For the frill of it: A statement ruffle was stitched into the right shoulder of the floor-length dress which ensured all eyes were on Claire
The professional dancer’s palatial home was first built in the 1700s, before being extended in 1801.
Speaking to The Wall Street Journal about the reduction, Michael said: ‚I don’t mind taking the cut because I spent 20 of the best years of my life in that house.‘
Michael, who has a net worth of $350 million (£266.6 million), explained he decided to sell the house after purchasing a mansion in London’s extravagant Belgravia.
The star has an extensive property portfolio which includes homes in Barbados and Monaco.
Suave: James Nesbitt looked handsome in his three-piece suit including tails when he made his departure from the lavish dinner
FLAME-HAIRED Jean Butler was Michael Flatley’s co-star when the Irish hit musical first conquered the world 20 years ago but she dropped out of the limelight.
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In less than seven minutes they did something that had never happened before in its 1,000-year-long history: they made Irish dancing sexy.
This was the moment 20 years ago that Jean Butler and Michael Flatley transformed the previously chaste and reserved traditional dance form into something else entirely during the interval of the 1994 Eurovision Song global singing competition was held in Dublin that year so the audience could hardly have been surprised when the organisers chose to bring on some Irish dancers for what happened next was the birth of a phenomenon that left the audience on its feet and 300 million viewers mesmerised by the quicksilver footwork of flamehaired Butler and her charismatic partner Flatley.Accompanied by pounding drums and backed by a line of supporting dancers all drilling their feet into the stage in unison like a percussive Celtic army, it was the birth of Riverdance – an entertainment that would ignite the creation of a multi-million dollar stage show just nine months later and go on to break theatrical records around the show – which returns to the UK for a 20-year anniversary tour this autumn with a line-up of 38 dancers – made a global star of Michael Flatley, now 56, who went on to create his own enormously successful rival show, Lord Of The Dance, with which he has toured the world and amassed a fortune estimated at £ what of his principle dance partner? Jean Butler, now 43, was the striking redhead who helped transform a once dying art form into a global brand before falling out with her co-star, whom she accused of hogging the 1996 the Riverdance phenomenon was dancing on without either of them after disputes about money, artistic control and star was born and raised in New York but her mother was originally from County Mayo in the west of Ireland and, in true American Irish tradition, enrolled her daughter in Irish dance classes at the age of begin with little Jean disliked Irish dancing so much she stopped after only a few lessons.“I hated it,“ she has admitted. „They made me stand with my arms at my sides for two hours. So, I left.“ She started again at the age of nine and went on to win several world championships. At 17 she debuted with renowned Irish group The Chieftains and toured the world with them.
It was while studying drama at the University of Birmingham that Jean received an invitation from producers Moya Doherty and John McColgan to star in a 10-minute stage production called Riverdance. It would be different from anything that had gone before in the world of Irish dance, not least because the dancers would use their arms as well as their legs.“As for the sexuality, that was definitely a factor in the success of Riverdance,“ says Jean, who choreographed her own solo. „That wouldn’t have happened, I believe, if it hadn’t been Michael and myself dancing together – because of my edge to match his. If it had been a 16-year-old who had no performance experience it wouldn’t have worked as well, the balance wouldn’t have been as tense,“ adds Jean, who was 23 at the time (Flatley was 36) believes part of the tension arose from the fact that she did not fancy her co-star. And she says that Flatley, who went on to be a notorious playboy, knew it.“He knew there was no possible way. I was not available and could not be approached in such a way because I kept myself on another level. That was understood from the outset.“ All this made for commercial and artistic success, but with it came tension.Michael Flatley has claimed that the Eurovision performance was one of the „purest moments“ of his artistic life. This is not what Jean remembers of her own experience.“There was a tremendous buzz but I really can’t remember understanding what was going on.“I was a student, poor, and knew I could use the money. It wasn’t a lot but it would pay my overdraft and for a little holiday with my university boyfriend. That’s what I really remember about how it all started. If you look at that video you see the difference between Michael’s reaction, and mine. He’s saying ‚this is it, I have arrived‘.“She says her first meeting with Flatley – who she admits can be „extremely charming“ – took place in Los Angeles in the months before Eurovision. „He arrived with a diamond in his ear, the buttons on his shirt undone, the belt, the cowboy boots. And I was thinking: what is this creation and how did it happen? But he was charming.“
But she soon realised that his ego was in overdrive. Jean claimed at the time that her co-star had effectively dismissed her contribution to the most popular and financially successful dance production in the world.“He said that he was the catalyst in relation to changing Irish dance. It wasn’t ‚Jean and I were the catalyst‘. But then how could Michael say something like that? Michael thinks in the first person. To give me credit wouldn’t enter his brain.
He had to see it as a threat to himself. And that’s a shame because we could have done a lot more together
But she added that the truth was that he didn’t receive recognition until they danced together. „Michael was working away for years but until he actually had a partner that could match him and bring out the best in him, like he brought out the best in me, he didn’t get recognition. But he couldn’t use how we worked together artistically.
„He had to see it as a threat to himself. And that’s a shame because we could have done a lot more together.“But although she has rarely spoken about Flatley since, and is today more sanguine about the experience, she was also upset that his image came to dominate the show’s marketing material. „The original posters were of myself and Michael but [soon] it was Michael on the posters,“ she said.
In 1995, following a dispute with the producers, Flatley left Riverdance and the reason for their incompatibility became clear to Jean who explained: „I was powerful on stage, in Lord Of The Dance everybody that is given any solo time is there to make Michael look better.“The following year, Jean also left Riverdance in search of new challenges. In 1999 she teamed up with Colin Dunne, an old friend from her competition days and the man who had replaced Flatley, and together they launched a £2million show called Dancing On Dangerous Ground. It received good reviews but was not a commercial 2001 Jean married Irish fashion designer, Cuan Hanley, and returned to her roots in drama. She appeared in Revengers with Dr Who star Christopher Eccleston and comic Eddie Izzard, and appeared in a couple of independent did a Masters in contemporary dance and has designed a range of jewellery. But she says today she doesn’t bear any rancour towards Flatley. „I hear he is doing well and that’s it. We worked together and had a professional relationship but I haven’t seen him for a long time.“For tickets go to …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
STEPPING UP: THE FIGURES BEHIND THE PHENOMENONWhen the Riverdance stage show began in 1995 the original 10 London dates were rapidly increased to show has now been performed more than 11,000 times and been seen live by more than 25 million people in more than 465 venues in 46 countries on six has played to a global television audience of three billion people and been bought on DVD by 10 million has travelled 700,000 miles and at any one time there are three separate troupes touring the have been 2,000 Irish dancers, 20,000 dance shoes used, 15,000 costumes worn, two million show programmes sold, 14,000 stage lighting bulbs used, 300,000 T-shirts sold, 17,500 hours worth of rehearsals, six million pounds of dry ice used on stage, 70,000lb of chocolate consumed by the have been 59 marriages between company members.