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Easter Stampede Drumming Workshop

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This Easter saw the beginning of the Laois County Stampede Drumming Group led by Eddie O’Neill.

Forty drumming students from a number of primary schools in County Laois came together to perform as a large-scale drumming ensemble. All the students participating come from schools who participate in the Stampede Drumming programme.

The students, led by our Stampede Drumming tutor Eddie O’Neill, were introduced to new drums, new rhythms, patterns and techniques in an intense two-days of learning. We look forward to seeing their progress over the next few years as this ensemble develops.

Music Generation Laois Grúpa Ceoil at Music @ Mount Leinster

Music Generation Laois Grúpa Ceoil at Music @ Mount Leinster

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A group of young musicians from Music Generation Laois attended a weekend of traditional music in Borris, Co Carlow, organised by Music Generation Carlow.

The Mount Leinster Traditional Music Camp ran from March 27 to March 29. The Laois group had the opportunity to work with some of the top traditional musicians in the country, including fiddle player Zoe Conway, concertina player Jack Talty and traditional flautist Conor Crimmins.

As part of the event, on Saturday March 28 there was an intimate evening of music in the Sacred Heart Church. The evening of traditional Irish music featured acclaimed musicians such as Zoe Conway and John McIntyre (fiddle and guitar), Damien Mullane (button accordion), Jack Talty, Aimee Farrell Countney (bodhrán), Conor Crimmins, and Dave Power (uilleann pipes).

The young Laois musicians who attended were Jessica and Sarah Bennett, Alain Carroll, Kurt Dineen-Carroll, Fiadh Fitzpatrick, Isobel and Grace Donnery and Kate McDonald.

See a video of their end of camp performance here:

We’re now gearing up to host a three-day traditional music summer school from July 7 to July 9 in Portlaoise. For more information on this, contact us on 057 8664176, or email musicgenerationlaois@laoiscoco.ie for further details.

Alexander L’Estrange Choral Workshops

Music Generation Laois hosted a series of workshops with Musician and Composer Alexander L’Estrange, entitled ‘Singing Pop and Jazz Styles.’ Alexander is from Oxford in England, and has composed many large-scale choral works for Community Choirs and schools, and he brought his wide expertise to Laois on Wednesday 18 and Thursday 19 of March.

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Children from Rath National School in Ballybrittas, Scoil Naomh Eoin Killenard, Presentation Primary School Portarlginton, Barnashrone National School, Errill National School, Killadooley National School in  Ballybrophy and Gael Scoil an tSlí Dala in Ballaghmore all participated. The workshops covered Gospel and Swing songs, and were extremely enjoyable for both children and Teachers in the various schools. All these schools participate in the Music Generation Laois Choral programme, new schools are invited to apply to join the Choral programme for the 2015-2016 academic year.

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Music Generation Laois/Laois School of Music 2nd Annual Festival

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The Music Generation Laois/Laois School of Music 2nd Annual Festival was held on 8 March at the Portlaoise Youth Education Centre, Railway Street, Portlaoise.

Over 110 performers took to the stage on an array of instruments including harp, uilleann pipes, piano, euphonium, saxophone, singer-songwriters, flute, violin and cello. The performers crossed all ages, children and adults, and the festival featured a multitude of styles and genres including classical, traditional, folk, singer-songwriter and jazz.

It was great to see such a good turnout on a sunny Sunday afternoon with friends, parents, grandparents and everyone else popping in to see the performances.
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In the final session, the gathering audience was treated to a performance by the Laois School of Music Youth Orchestra who were travelling to Scotland for St. Patrick’s Weekend for a weekend of performing with Scottish Musicians. The orchestra is conducted by well-known fiddle player, John Davidson.

The festival was non-competitive, however, Music Adviser, Martin Barrett from County Cork School of Music, was on hand to give feedback and words of advice to each performer and to award medals.

A great day was had by all and we look forward already to next year’s festival!

Irish TV were there on the day to film some of the performances. To see a click here and go 17.30!

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2nd Annual Laois School of Music/Music Generation Festival

2nd Annual Laois School of Music/Music Generation Festival

Following the success of last year’s Festival, we are delighted to announce that Festival 2015 will take place on Sunday 8th March.   

 

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The aims of the Festival are:

  1. to improve performance skills and encourage high standards
  2. to develop repertoire i.e. not just learning exam pieces all year
  3. to give a sense of achievement and develop self confidence.

Categories are open to all instruments according to age and there’s even an Adult category for all our wonderful adult pupils! The Festival is non-competitive but an External Adjudicator, Martin Barrett from Co. Cork School of Music, will give feedback to all performers at the end of each category and medals will be awarded to all. It will be a relaxed and enjoyable experience for all and we would encourage as many of you as possible to enter.

 

Entrants must be receiving tuition at Laois School of Music/Music Generation Laois Centre in Railway Street. Your tutor has entry forms with Fees and Guidelines or download Festival Entry Form & Guidelines 2015.

Closing date for entries is Saturday 14th February

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