440Scoil na gCláirseach 06 Director's Report
- Sep 22, 2006Scoil na gCláirseach–Summer School of Early Irish Harp 2006
The fourth annual Scoil na gCláirseach–Summer School of Early Irish
Harp took place 19-25 August 2006. It was our best-attended summer
school yet with twenty-eight enthusiastic students from nine countries
on three continents. Our overseas students outnumbered students based
in Ireland: seventeen to eleven. There were six US based students,
five from England and Scotland, two from Germany and one each from
Italy, Spain, Poland and France. The classes divided into three groups
of nine beginners, seven intermediate and twelve advanced students. As
usual, it was a packed and intensive programme but still the student
body managed both to work hard by day and party by night!
Our tutors and seminar presenters were Ann Heymann [USA], Javier Sáinz
[Spain], and myself, Siobhán Armstrong [IRL]. In addition, Paul Dooley
[IRL] visited as a guest tutor and performer on Tuesday, 22nd August.
Our unique two-tiered system of lectures for less and more advanced
students continued this year: Simon Chadwick [Scotland], Seán Donnelly
[IRL] and, for the first time, Edward Bunting’s biographer, Roy
Johnston [N. IRL], gave talks.
The HHSI’s latest student harp model – the HHSI Student Downhill – made
its appearance in class for the first time with three belonging to the
Society rented to Scoil students in addition to others played by their
owners. These were in addition to many of the HHSI’s Student
Trinities, rented and owned by some participants. For more information
on HHSI student harps please visit http://www.irishharp.org/shop/
The generous support of the An Chomhairle Ealaíon (The Arts Council)
made it possible for the HHSI to present three concerts in association
with Scoil na gCláirseach: one in Kilkenny with The Irish Consort and
one each in Galway and Dublin presenting the three Scoil tutors in
concert with guest sean-nós singer, Róisin Elsafty. All of the
concerts were well attended with standing room only at Rothe House in
The importance and positive effect of eating well at a summer school
cannot be overestimated! The Scoil lunches this year were particularly
well received by all. Pat Glavin of The Food Company, Carrick-on-Suir,
provided a vegetarian feast each lunchtime and not content with the
work that that involved, soon started providing us with mid-afternoon
home-baked treats for our tea breaks. Sincere thanks to Pat for his
wonderful contribution to the week.
I would like to thank my assistant director, Simon Chadwick, and the
tutors, lecturers and performers whose advance preparation and non-stop
hard work and enthusiasm at Scoil na gCláirseach enabled us to present
the best possible programme we could for the students.
I would also like to thank the following for all their kind help and
Fergus Shiel and the An Chomhairle Ealaíon; Philip Edmondson and
Kilkenny School of Music; Maura Uí Chróinín and Galway Early Music;
Brenda Malloy; Pattie Moore; Niamh Tumelty; Marian Rabbitte; John
Elwes; Charlie Heymann and Ealasaid Gilfillan.
To see a photo album of Scoil na gCláirseach 06 please go to
Director–Scoil na gClairseach