In 2016, Galway Early Music began a long-planned project to encourage young musicians in Galway to play and to enjoy early music. We wanted to introduce early music to young musicians as part of their cultural heritage and an area of music that is not only beautiful but also fun and challenging. However, we also recognised that this project would help us to create an audience for the future, including both the young musicians and their families.

The idea was to bring an ensemble of professional musicians with expertise in this area to participating music schools and groups for three half-day workshops. The participants were invited to partner the professional musicians in the opening concert of The Galway Early Music Festival on May 12, 2016.

The project has run successfully in 2017 and 2018, and we are currently working on the 2019 project.

Project Leaders, 2016 – 2019
We invited The Gregory Walkers (Laoise O’Brien – recorders, Malachy Robinson – viols, and Eamon Sweeney – baroque guitars and lute) to give our workshops and to programme the concert. They were very enthusiastic. They had already been involved in projects of this type, especially the Music Generation project in Carlow.

Participants 2016 – 2019
Athenry Music School students comprising strings, guitar, wind instruments and brass.  Athenry Music School has been a wonderful partner, with enthusiastic engagement of teachers as well as students.  We are especially grateful to director of the school, Katharine MacMághnuis, guitar teacher Kevin Brett and Horizon Orchestra conductor Daire MacMághnuis for their co-operation and help.

St Nicholas Choristers, dir Mark Duley,  comprise up to thirty boys and girls aged 8-14, drawn from the parish, St Nicholas’ Parochial School and the wider community. The choristers receive a unique musical education through weekly rehearsals, and singing and musicianship classes utilising the RSCM Voice for Life scheme.  We are very proud to have them as part of this project.