LECTURES, POETRY, MUSIC
Tomás is available to give any
of the following
(each takes approx. 90 minutes,
The Piping Tradition
( performers, styles, history )
The sean-nós singing tradition in Ireland.
(Illustration, explanation and enjoyment of the old style of Irish singing)
The Legacy of Seán Ó Riada.
(A view of one of the most significant Irishmen of this century, by his friend and
The Irish Singer in a World Context.
(This lecture has been published by University College Cork as the 1998 Ó Riada
Music - Art or Science?
(Tomás, formerly Dean of Engineering in University College Cork, wears his two
Reading of his own poetry (from Melos, A Lifetime of Notes and Dornán Dánta (Irish))
Tomás also gives combined poetry and music recitals.
(a number of his poems deal with music and with past performers among his ancestors)
(This normally contains songs in both Irish and English, but a workshop can be
tailored to suit particular requirements. Each participant is given a booklet containing
the words and music of the songs to be studied (typically about six) and there will
usually be a tape which may be copied.
The level of technique and repertoire to be studied in a
workshop clearly depends on the level of piping proficiency displayed by the students. In
my experience, it is better to divide classes into small groups of similarly proficient
pipers. Tuition can then take place on a partly individual/partly group basis, for maximum
benefit to the students.
Tuition normally begins with an examination of the
students' own repertoire, with a view to suggesting possible improvements in technique.
Listening to recordings of older pipers is usual, before continuing with the teaching of
new tunes. This section would normally include at least one air.
Tomás considers it important for students to creatively comment on each others playing
during a workshop.