St Brigid’s Day Celebrations: Pioneers and Trailblazers: Women in Irish Harping and Song

DATE: 29th January 2022
TIME: 17:00
WHERE: EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum
COST: €15

Join us at EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum as we celebrate St Brigid’s Day and enjoy an unforgettable performance from award winning harpist Dr Helen Lawlor.

The vibrant tradition of Irish harping has grown in significantly in popularity and scope over the past few decades. In 2019 UNESCO recognised the importance of this tradition, inscribing Irish harping on the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage. The success of the harp revival has generated exciting new contexts and possibilities for performers, composers and audiences with an array of opportunities for teaching and learning the harp now evident throughout Ireland.

Much of the stellar work in teaching and performing the harp nationally and internationally has been carried out by dedicated women artists who have each contributed to the rich tapestry of harping in Ireland. This performance and talk highlights how through song and music women have passed on, shaped and impacted Irish musical tradition. Sandra Joyce (song) and Helen Lawlor (harp) will draw on their extensive research to illustrate their performance with a discussion on the role women have played and continue to play in harping and Irish traditional music today.

Dr Helen Lawlor:

dr-helen-lawlorDr Helen Lawlor (neé Lyons) is a musician and academic, specialising in Irish harping. She specialises in research on music in Ireland with a focus on the musical practice, education and history of the harp. She is author of Irish harping 1900–2010 (2012) and co-editor with Sandra Joyce of Harp studies: perspectives on the Irish harp (2016). Her work is also published in The Encyclopaedia of Music in Ireland, Ancestral Imprints, Sonus, American Harp Journal, JSMI and JMI. She a member of the editorial board of the JSMI and is Secretary of Performance Research Ireland. Helen holds a BMusEd (TCD), MMus (UCD) and a PhD (UCD) for which she was an Ad Astra Research Scholarship recipient.

Helen has performed and taught traditional Irish harping at numerous international music festivals including the Interceltic Festival (Lorient), Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy, Blas and The Gaelic Roots festival in Boston.

Helen lectures in music at TU Dublin Conservatoire.

Dr Sandra Joyce:

Dr. Sandra Joyce is co-editor, with Dr Helen Lawlor, of Harp Studies: Perspectives on the Irish Harp, a publication which focuses on diverse aspects of the Irish harp tradition. She has established the TradSong Research Cluster at UL, which is a collection of scholars working in the area of Irish traditional song and related areas.

A singer and bodhrán player, she has performed internationally, most recently in the Irish Cultural Centre, Boston and the Irish Embassy, Beijing. Her research focuses primarily on the Irish harp and song traditions.

Proudly part of TradFest 2022.

Featured Photo: Trinity College, Brian Boru’s Harp – Dublin City, Co. Dublin