Blas & Willie Clancy


June 2017 marked the beginning of a new initiative between Blas and the Willie Clancy Summer School.

Blas is one of the many success stories of the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick. Now approaching its 21st anniversary this international school of Irish traditional music and dance attracts students from all over the world who are typically musicians, singers and dancers already familiar with the Irish traditions who want to extend their technique, repertoire and knowledge therein. Blas acts as an incubator, and forms a space in which to improve musicianship, song, or dance technique, and to learn more about the stylistic, social, and historic content of these traditions in a familiar educational campus setting. It is an internationally accredited school. It takes place for two weeks each June at the UL campus.

Now Blas is extending its offering to students by recognising and recommending a further week of insight into all aspects of Irish Tradtional Music through participation in The Scope of Irish Traditional Music (Dúchas an Cheoil) class at the Willie Clancy Summer School in Miltown Malbay Co.Clare in early July. The Willie Clancy week in Miltown Malbay has been a Mecca for many thousands of students and lovers of Irish music for well over forty years and The Scope of Irish Traditional Music class has been offered as part the School for just over thirty years.


The Scope of IrishTraditional Music is a six-day course to introduce students to the essential elements of Irish Traditional Music Dance and Song. The primary focus is on the listening experience and on creating an awareness of the social and historical context in which the largest part of this musical tradition was created. Emphasis is placed on relaxed interaction between student, tutors and players and singers. Some of Ireland’s leading musicians and singers have contributed to it over the years.

This new initiative between Blas and Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy will enable students to earn university accreditation worth 3 undergraduate credits (6 ECTS credits). Students wishing to pursue accreditation will be required to complete both the second week of Blas and The Scope of Irish Traditional Music.


The Scope of Irish Traditional Music Tutors

Cathal Goan Paddy Glackin 2016Paddy Glackin, a native of Dublin, is a noted fiddle player and exponent of the Donegal style of fiddle music, a tradition inherited  from his Donegal father.  He  has released a number of  solo albums,   collaborated  on  several  albums with leading traditional musicians, and  been involved in various seminal groups such as the Bothy Band, Ceoltóirí Laighean, LAPD, and, more recently, Usher’s Island. From 1980 to 1985 he served as Traditional Music Officer with the Arts Council.  His professional career was with RTÉ Radio where he worked as a producer, presenter and editor. He is currently on the Board of the Arts Council of  Ireland.

Cathal Goan, a native of Belfast, has a particular interest in the Irish language song tradition.  He  began his professional career with RTÉ, the national radio and television broadcaster, and was the first Director of the newly established Telefís na Gaeilge (TG4)  and later  Director-General of RTÉ.   In 2011 he was appointed Adjunct-Professor in the School of Irish Language, Celtic Studies, Irish Folklore and Linguistics at University College Dublin. He served  as chairman of the Irish Traditional Music Archive  and holds an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from the University of Ulster in recognition of his services to the Irish language and to broadcasting in Ireland. (Photo: Tony Kearns)

For more details on the Scope of Irish Traditional Music course, please visit


Click on the link below to download the application form (in either .doc or .pdf format):


2018 Application Forms coming soon!


Please give as much detail on your application form as possible. You may submit your application by email or post as below:

By Email:


By Post:

Pamela Cotter (Blas Director)
Irish World Academy of Music and Dance
University of Limerick