Wednesday Workshops – May/June 2024


In May and June I will be offering workshops on specific tunes/topics at various levels. These are individual stand-alone workshops, and the fee is €25 per workshop, but there is an automatic discount if you sign up for more than one.

Workshops take place on Wednesdays 8.00-9.15pm Irish Standard Time (3.00-4.15pm Eastern)

An audio recording will be sent to participants in advance so you can familiarise yourself with the tune ahead of each workshop. The workshop itself will be taught by ear, live on zoom and will be video recorded with an access link sent afterwards so you can review at your leisure or catch up if you couldn’t make the live workshop. Sheet music will also be provided.

See dates and further details below.

SKU: N/A Category:

May 15: Dance Tunes [8.00-9.30pm]
Level: Advanced
Tune: The Geese in the Bog (Jig)
This well-known tune is the first track on my CD The Thorn Tree. There are 5 parts so we will be moving at a fairly fast pace! This workshop would be best suited to advanced harpers already comfortable playing jigs and reels on the harp. We will look at some tips on fingering to help the flow of the tune when playing up to tempo, as well as working on ornamentation, left hand ideas and damping.

May 29: Harpers' Tunes
Level: All Levels
Tune: Celia Connellan (comp Thomas Connellan)
This lovely song/air was composed by Thomas Connellan (c1640-1720) from County Sligo in the mid 17th century.  This workshop is suited to all levels as we will learn the melody in an easier version (also suited to 26 string harps) as well as more complex version. We will also discuss ideas for arranging harpers' tunes like this one for the modern-day Irish harp, as it would have originally been performed on early Irish harp which we will also talk about.

June 5: An Introduction to Irish Slow Airs
Level: All Levels
Tune: Cailín na Gruaige Doinne (The Girl with the Brown Hair)
This beautiful song fits very nicely and is not too difficult to play on the harp so it is the perfect introduction to the art of playing Irish Slow Airs for anyone who is curious about that, but is also suitable for more advanced players of any level.  We will talk about interpreting 'slow airs' on the harp, and ornamentation in the context of slow airs as well as learning a simple arrangement of the tune.  This workshop will be by ear only, with no sheet music provided - you will receive a recording on registration to familiarise yourself with the melody.

June 12: Dance Tunes
Level: Intermediate
Tune: The Ash Plant (Reel)
This tune provides a good introduction to reel playing for anyone still developing their skills in playing Irish dance tunes. We will look at an easy method for creating left hand arrangements using drones and ideas taken from the melody, and this is also one of my favourite tunes for teaching and working on the 'Treble' ornament which is very much part of playing dance tunes on the Irish harp.

June 19: Slow Airs
Level: Advanced
Tune: An Draigheann 'The Blackthorn' (comp Peadar O Riada)
This beautiful air is the most requested tune of anything that I play! This workshop will be by ear only, with no sheet music provided - you will receive a recording on registration to familiarise yourself with the melody.  We will also talk about ornamentation in the context of slow airs and look at left hand ideas for the tune.




Additional information


May 15: Dance Tunes Geese in the Bog, May 29: Harpers' Tunes Celia Connellan, June 5: Intro To Slow Airs Cailín na Gruaige Doinne, June 12: Dance Tunes The Ash Plant, June 19: Slow Airs The Blackthorn