Transition Year topics featured two excellent workshops, the first by Steve Mc Farlane with loads of practical advice on how to implement radio programme projects. Joe Rogers spoke about his freelance TY programmes again with lots of useful practical detail. I would have thought the weekend was worth it just for his wee G chord although I got some very funny looks from bystanders when demonstrating said chord for the Songschool team later. No more transposing from G to A for me . Anne Marie Higgin's ICT presentation featured a plethora of eye popping high tech visual whizardry but it was good to see Jonathan Browners low tech but very effective polystyrene cubes too.
Ernestine Healy's powerpoint presentation on regional styles was full of detail but perhaps was a little more information than most teachers required and the questions came down to rather more mundane level such as how to avoid confusion between slow reels and fast hornpipes, than any discussion of the finer details of iconic players'styles. Mary McFaddens talk emphasised again the value of working in some kinesthetic element into music classes.
Following dinner where I met teachers from Waterford and Dundalk including Niall Crowley, stalwart of choral scene in the South East and Margaret McCann music teacher at De La Salle . There was a lively jam session in mellow jazz mode featuring the fine guitar skills of Vice Chairman and recording artist Steve McFarlane. Donegal featured very strongly with a bevy of beauties who looked like they might be sitting their Leaving Cert doing barbershop turns . A local resident gave us a few Bagatelle numbers. Duncan, IT expert proved to be that rare breed, an improvising trombonist
|Luthier Mark Keenan|
Well done to outgoing chairman, Ethel Glancy, this was an enjoyable and well organised conference