From Israel to here: Students descend on Limerick to learn Irish music and dance

Anne Sheridan

Reporter:

Anne Sheridan

DOZENS of students from across the world are descending on Limerick again this week for the high profile Blas International Summer School of Irish traditional music and dance.

DOZENS of students from across the world are descending on Limerick again this week for the high profile Blas International Summer School of Irish traditional music and dance.

The annual summer school, which has returned to the Irish World Academy at the University of Limerick for the 16th successive year continues until July 6.

Forty-five students from as far afield as Israel, Canada and the Czech Republic, aged between 16 and 57 years, will learn from the masters during the two-week school.

Director Ernestine Healy said many of the students, including three from Limerick, are already established musicians and dancers in their own fields, while the internet has introduced Ireland’s love of music and dance to people in far-flung locations. Apart from tuition and master classes, students will enjoy lectures on Irish traditional music topics, field-trips, sessions, Irish language classes, concerts, céilís, and above all, the opportunity to share tunes with some of Ireland’s leading traditional musicians. The summer school will be launched by Aodán O’Dubhghaill, director of RTÉ lyric fm, this Monday. Following on from this, a number of public events will take place throughout the summer school. On Tuesday there will be a discussion entitled ‘Irish Language Singers in a Contemporary Context’.

Performer, composer, academic and teacher, Dr. Mel Mercier, will deliver this year’s Francis Roche Memorial Lecture. Entitled ‘Making Music Together: Father and Son Duets’, the lecture will take place on Thursday, June 28 at 5pm in the Tower Theatre at the Irish World Academy. For further information see www.blas.ie