"What I enjoyed about it was that it was very calming and relaxing for me. The music was amazing, very well played and creative!" participant, Scoil Mhuire, Clifden
Our learning and participation events give school children, music students and members of local music and community groups opportunities to experience the joy of high quality live music on their doorstep.
It’s no secret that making music is good for developing young minds. Aside from the many cognitive benefits of learning to play an instrument, participation in musical activities enhances confidence and self-esteem, increases happiness and helps forge friendships. Our workshops bring musicians and listeners together through the magic of live music.
Renowned artists Liz Knowles (fiddle/hardanger fiddle), Niall Vallely (concertina) and Niwel Tsumbu (guitar/vocals) engaged with musicians of primary school to undergraduate level across counties Laois, Galway, Donegal and Dublin as part of our May touring programme.
First stop was St Joseph’s Girls’ National School in Mountmellick, County Laois where we welcomed 219 primary school students to workshops with all three musicians presented in partnership with the team from Music Generation Laois. The students had a demonstration of fiddle, guitar and concertina from our musicians and had lots of interesting questions for the trio. Some talented young students even joined the musicians to show off their Irish dancing skills.
Next it was off to Galway where ahead of their concert at the Clifden Station House Theatre all three musicians popped along to Scoil Mhuire primary school in Clifden. There 30 first class pupils joined them for a music demonstration and question and answers session, organised in association with the Clifden Arts Society. The pupils taking part told us how much they enjoyed the session with some saying they found it very calming and relaxing "The music was amazing, very well played and creative!"
In Dublin Congolese-born, Ireland-based guitarist and vocalist Niwel led a guitar workshop at the BIMM Institute "We had a chance to play with Niwel and we also got to ask a lot of questions. I had a really enjoyable experience." said one of the four talented music students who got to take part in the session.
The final stop on this national tour took the trio to Donegal. At the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny both Liz and Niwel delivered workshops with young musicians in association with Donegal Music Education Partnership. Liz had a chance to impart some words of wisdom, tips and tricks to the young fiddlers who got to join her on stage at the venue for the workshop, while Niwel worked with six talented young musicians at a guitar workshop.
"Our thanks from Donegal to Music Network for giving some of our young fiddlers and guitar players the chance to meet and learn from two brilliant professionals ..." Martin McGinley, Donegal Music Education Partnership
Learning & Participation Activities
Our touring Learning & Participation workshop packages include musical demonstrations, student participation, opportunities to meet the performers and discounted concert tickets to see the artists perform live in local venues.
We also offer standalone workshop programmes from time to time, most recently Take a Breath for primary schools and Befriending Anxiety for secondary schools.
Our Teaching Residency model offers people aged 55 and over the opportunity to return to playing an instrument and rekindle the joy of group music-making. Read about our most recent Teaching Residency here.
Interested in taking part?
Please email Sarah Ledwidge or call 01 475 0224 to find out more.