This masterclass offers a unique opportunity for young musicians to work closely with three of the country’s most highly acclaimed traditional musicians, Máirtín O’Connor (accordion), Cathal Hayden (fiddle, banjo), and Seamie O’Dowd (guitar, voice, fiddle). Over three days these acclaimed artists will work with a group of young musicians, taking them on an adventure of musical discovery that will culminate in a public performance (Day 3). During the masterclasses the young musicians will get the opportunity to:
This project offers the young musician an opportunity to spend an intensive block of time with three of the country’s most established artists. Over the course of the masterclass the young musician will:
The artists will share some of their own music through performance – ahead of the masterclasses (via Padlet) and during the sessions. And you will be invited to learn some of this repertoire (tunes and songs). As part of this you will pick up some tips on technique and performance style from the musicians – and they will offer feedback on your own playing along the way. Much of the learning will be by ear; readers of staff notation and/or ABCs can also be accommodated.
Looking at instrumental tunes and songs you will work collaboratively with the artists on building arrangements. As part of this you will explore topics such as how to choose material, how to assemble material, instrumentation/voicing/balance, adding harmony, rhythmic/melodic accompaniment, intros/outros/bridges/breaks etc.)
Here you will learn about how these musicians take inspiration from other music genres – and see what happens when ideas and techniques and sounds from other music genres meet traditional music. And you will get to try this out for yourself.
You will have the opportunity to hear stories about the experiences of these musicians – and you will get the chance to ask them questions about their lives as professional artists in the ‘Ask Me Anything’ session (e.g. what’s it’s like to tour the world? Do you still practice? What was your best/worst gig ever?).
Schedules and Materials
Who can apply / application criteria:
This project is ideal for any young musician who is:
This event is proudly supported by
Máirtín O'Connor, Cathal Hayden and Seamie O'Dowd have been building a formidable musical relationship under the guise of The Máirtín O'Connor Band since 2001. Individually recognised figureheads of the tradition, they have built solid reputations as master musicians with astounding skill, diversity and virtuosity.
Moving dexterously between compositions and pure tradition without ever altering the evocative power of its music, the trio produce a vibrant and musically charged experience that redefines one's concept of brilliance.
Named Ireland’s 2015 Traditional Musician of the Year (TG4 Gradam Ceoil Awards) Máirtín O'Connor was one of the main musical forces behind the now legendary Riverdance phenomenon. Through his work with De Dannan, Midnight Well and Skylark and also as a solo artist, Máirtín has quite simply gone where no Irish accordion player had gone before. He is one of the most respected and best loved musicians ever to emerge from the country.
Cathal Hayden needs no introduction to anyone even remotely familiar with traditional Irish music. A multiple All-Ireland Championship winner, he achieved world-wide recognition as one of the founder members of Four Men and a Dog. He is one of Ireland's top fiddlers and his solo banjo performances are quite simply show-stopping.
Seamie O Dowd is a performer and composer/songwriter who plays guitar, fiddle, harmonica and mandolin. He has toured worldwide and played with many great musicians including; Christy Moore, The Chieftains, Dervish, Matt Molloy, Liam O' Flynn, Thom Moore, Dick Gaughan, Cathy Jordan, Rick Epping, Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill. His experience also includes recording production, teaching and film soundtrack work.