MUSICIANS AND SINGERS
For musicians and singers, we welcome people familiar with Irish music and who have been playing for several years or more, and people with a musical ability in music of other genres and traditions who wish to learn more about Irish music. Blas always has an interesting mix of students with different musical backgrounds, each coming together to learn more about Irish music but also learning from each other as someone from a different musical background can approach the same music in a different way and offer new insight.
Blas does not suit complete beginners on any instrument. However percussion classes will accept people with a percussion background who are only starting to play the bodhrán. For all other instrument classes, potential students should already have a good familiarity with the instrument and be ready to learn new stylistic techniques and repertoire rather then learning the basics of the instrument itself. Classes are often mixed ability, but where ability levels are too disparate, extra classes will be laid on for beginners/intermediate players where possible. Even in a mixed ability class, the small number of students per class means that each student gets specific individual attention from the tutor to the level of their ability.
Flute classes will be taught featuring the Irish wooden flute and not the Boehm system silver flute. Musicians playing silver flute are welcome to these classes and indeed many prominent Irish traditional flute players use the Boehm system. However you should bear in mind that not all technique on the wooden flute, as the instrument to be taught in class, will translate to the silver flute. Potential students for song classes should have some previous experience of singing whether this is traditional or folk song or more classically trained.
Dancers need relevant experience in Irish dance or a closely related dance form. Classes are most often intermediate/advanced level, but more intermediate dancers can also be catered for. Blas would not suit complete dance beginners. Some experience of Irish dance (or a closely related dance form) is expected. In your application form, please state your level of dance experience, dance competition results, dancing school or teacher and so on where appropriate (even if this is from another dance form). Please give us as much detail as you can on your application form so that we can assess whether Blas is right for you.