I am embarking on a 2 year HND course in Irish traditional music at Ballyfermot College Dublin and need financial help to pay the fees and living costs to move to Dublin from Northern Ireland, as there is no state or college funding available. The last assignment at the end of course in 2017 is to release an album using the college recording studios. All funders will be kept updated with the progress of the album.
Photos from a recent fundraising event in East Belfast (19 August 2015)
About the project
I have been studying traditional Irish flute for a number of years by myself from my base in Northern Ireland and also started playing uilleann pipes in 2013. I already hold a 1st class Classical Music degree from Queen's University Belfast and sometimes play at weddings and special events. Many of you will have seen me out and about at sessions/cultural events/gallery openings etc. doing my best to learn as much as possible and play at every opportunity. I present a traditional music radio show in Irish on Raidio Failte in Belfast. I was lucky enough to get a place on this course after passing an audition with flute player Paul McGrattan earlier this year and it would be an excellent opportunity to have a more formal structured approach to my learning, to study with other people and get advice from top professionals in Ireland.
The course will further my current knowledge of traditional music and give me more performing experience as well as the opportunity to make new Irish contacts and hopefully secure future gigs to support myself financially in future. We will study a range of topics, such as performance skills, harmony, arranging, Scottish and Breton music, and recording processes in order to complete an album at the end of the course. Based in the busy Irish capital with so many opportunities to perform and listen to other musicians, this will be a great place to further my musical career, as well as paying tribute to and representing the Northern Irish influences that have shaped my traditional music education so far.
Your funding is crucial to allow me to do this course as I have been unable to find any state or college funding despite months of research - and moving to Dublin from Belfast is very expensive! I have also done as much as possible to save and work in temporary jobs to add to any donations I receive and to make this project viable. Your donations will be used to pay the college fees and living costs for the first few months until I get settled and hopefully find other sources of income from part-time work, gigs etc.