Call for participants: Making Music with The Unwanted: the Roscommon Teaching Residency

Call for participants: Making Music with The Unwanted: the Roscommon Teaching Residency
A shared learning opportunity for County Roscommon residents aged 60 and over, presented by Music Network and Roscommon County Council Arts Office

Music Network and Roscommon County Council Arts Office are inviting County Roscommon residents aged 60 and over to join an exciting music project with renowned group The Unwanted, featuring Cathy Jordan, Seamie O’Dowd and Rick Epping.

The focus of this project is on returning to playing an instrument and sharing the joy of group music-making. Participants can apply to receive tuition on fiddle, guitar, harmonica or bodhrán from members of The Unwanted between January and May 2022. Tuition is free of charge and instruments can be provided if necessary for the duration of the project. In addition to playing an instrument, there will also be plenty of opportunities to sing with Cathy, Seamie and Rick for any participants who enjoy singing.

Applicants must be aged 60 or over, resident in County Roscommon, and have some previous experience of playing music. The ability to read music is not essential. The project will be based primarily at King House, Boyle, but additional venues around the county may also be used. To apply, either visit https://www.musicnetwork.ie/wh... or phone Music Network’s Programmes Administrator Sarah Ledwidge on 083 0162718. Closing date for applications: 13th December 2021, at 2pm.

Commenting on the announcement, CEO of Music Network Sharon Rollston said: “We’re delighted to announce the call-out for this new Teaching Residency in partnership with Roscommon County Council Arts Office. This is a wonderful opportunity for people to rediscover the pleasure of playing a musical instrument. We are particularly pleased to have Cathy, Seamie and Rick on board as our ensemble-in-residence to support and inspire participants in equal measure.”

Arts Officer at Roscommon County Council, Rhona McGrath has welcomed the opportunity to partner with Music Network saying: “This is an amazing opportunity for people who might have played an instrument in the past and put it aside for various reasons. We are encouraging people to consider taking up those instruments again to learn and perform with one of our own, Cathy Jordan and with her band members from Sligo, all very well-known and respected nationally and internationally. I know it will be a very enjoyable musical journey in the company of new friends.”

Benefitting from the combined musical backgrounds of The Unwanted members Cathy Jordan (guitar, bodhrán), Seamie O’Dowd (guitar, fiddle), and Rick Epping (harmonica), the tuition programme will offer participants the opportunity to experience an array of musical styles and techniques. Between January and March 2022, participants will receive eight one-to-one instrumental lessons with the relevant member of The Unwanted, held primarily on Mondays. Group instrumental lessons will also be held on Mondays during April where participants will play in small groups with the relevant member of The Unwanted.

The project will conclude with three large ensemble sessions on 9th 16th and 23rd May, where all participants will join together with The Unwanted to play the music learned during the project (exact times of group lessons and ensemble sessions to be announced).

Please note, while the preference is for in-person events wherever possible, lessons may take place via video call if necessary, e.g. in line with public health directives. Technical support to enable online learning will be provided to participants if necessary.

Places are limited to 15. Priority will be given on a first come first served basis, however additional criteria that will be taken into account for selection include availability of teaching slots, availability of instruments, ability to partake in the full programme and geographical spread throughout the county. Closing date for applications: 13th December 2021, 2pm.

Making Music with The Unwanted: the Roscommon Teaching Residency is presented by Music Network and Roscommon County Council Arts Office. Music Network is funded by the Arts Council of Ireland. This initiative is supported by the Bank of Ireland Begin Together Arts Fund in partnership with Business to Arts.