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DkIT Student Colleen Experiences Inishowen Singing Weekend

10 June 2024

DkIT student Colleen Savage was recently awarded a bursary to attend the 34th Inishowen International Folk Song and Ballad Seminar. Colleen is currently undertaking a Masters by Research on Irish song traditions in South Armagh.

Commenting on the experience, Colleen said,

“To receive the bursary to attend the Inishowen Singing Weekend was simply amazing. I was so pleasantly surprised and delighted and most grateful to be in receipt of it. It was such a wonderful learning experience, to be in the company of some of the greatest singers in traditional singing circles, and to hear them up front and personal was certainly a treat.

The weekend presented a wonderful opportunity to meet fellow singers and to make new friends from the tradition. Everyone was so welcoming and encouraging and although I travelled alone, it was lovely to meet in person some of the same singers that I had sang with during online singing circles during the Covid lockdowns.

With such a varied programme including lectures, concerts with singing circles being the staple of the day, there were lots of opportunity to sing and share my own songs.  There were several highlights for me including the opening lecture from Dr Deirdre Ní Chonghaile on Aran Songs; One Singer, One Song with Belgium singer Andreas Schulz and John Moulden; and the performance from the Inishowen Trad Choir directed by Lorna McLaughlin.

The hospitality was excellent and as a bursary student I was so well looked after. The committee including Grace Toland, Bredgeen Harkin and Linda McGonigle could not have been more welcoming and encouraged me to share my songs over the weekend’s events. Overall, it was an unforgettable singing experience, and I am already looking forward to attending the festival again next year”.

Speaking about the initiative Dr Adèle Commins, Head of Department of Creative Arts, Media and Music at Dundalk Institute of Technology noted

“participation in the Inishowen International Folk Song and Ballad Seminar is a wonderful opportunity for our students to be exposed to a range of international artists. If is of immense benefit to students interested in singing as they have the opportunity to sing, learn and network among experienced singers from across the world. We are delighted to collaborate with Inishowen International Folk Song and Ballad Seminar on this initiative”’.



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