BANJO (TENOR) AND MANDOLIN

Aiden Walsh

All Levels
Aiden Walsh, originally from Tubercurry in Co. Sligo, is by now a long-time resident of Belfast. He is well known for his distinct, driving style and is much sought after as a teacher and performer. 

BODHRÁN

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Gavin O'Connor

All Levels
Gavin has been teaching the bodhrán with BelfastTrad for over 25 years. He is a patient and encouraging teacher.

BUTTON ACCORDION

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Edel Ní Churraoin

All Levels
Edel is from Connemara and grew up surrounded in the tradition. She has made Belfast her home and she is involved in many aspects of Irish music and works with Radió Failte. She is a lovely player and a nice dancer as well!

CONCERTINA

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Tom McGonigle

All Levels
Tom has been associated with the society since its inception and continues to teach all abilities on the concertina with us. 

Lorraine Glenn (ní Bhrian)

All Levels
Steeped in the concertina tradition of her native Co. Clare, Lorraine began her musical education under the guidance of the legendary teacher, Frank Custy. With further tuition from such greats as Dympna O’Sullivan and Noel Hill, Lorraine has developed into one of the leading concertina players in her own right. She holds a B.A. Music from Trinity College, Dublin and M.A. Music Therapy from the University of Limerick. Lorraine is a regular tutor at the Willie Clancy Summer School, Miltown Malbay, Co.Clare.

FIDDLE

Conor Caldwell

Lower Intermediate and Advanced Levels
Conor is a former student of BelfastTrad who has gone on to earn a PhD in Traditional Music from Queens and develop a deep musical life and career.

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Kevin McCullagh

Beginner and Upper Intermediate Levels
Kevin is a vastly experienced teacher and has been praised by our auditors for his progressive teaching methods, especially with beginner students. A long term tutor with Belfast Met, Kevin also teaches performance workshop courses at Queen's University and holds a Masters in Music Technology from the same institution. Kevin's creative work combines his experience of fiddle music - especially the styles of Donegal and Sliabh Luachra - with contemporary electronica and dub-step.

Melanie Houton

Kids Fiddle-Ages 7 and up
Melanie is originally from Inishowen, Co.Donegal and is a highly respected player and teacher. She is especially good with the little ones who want to get started on the fiddle.

FLUTE

Davy Maguire

All Levels
Davy is one of the most significant flute players of his generation, known not only in Belfast, but on the European continent for his dynamic and powerful style. He has travelled regularly to Britanny and formed a strong playing partnership with the Breton flute player Jean Michelle Veillon. Davy is equally well-known for his humour and teaching ability and he is respected as one of Belfast's finest musical sons.

GUITAR

Jim Rainey

All Levels
An expert across a range of guitar styles, Jim was a relative later comer to traditional music before becoming an integral part of the Belfast session scene in the late 1990s.  His high energy style, coupled with a fine singing voice that sees him at home across a range of musical genres, has led to him becoming a firm fixture with the band Craobh Rua in the last decade. 

HARP

Ciara Taaffe 

All Levels
As well being a graduate of Queen's University with a Bachelor Degree of Music in 2012, Ciara holds an Associate Teaching Diploma with the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She has extensive experience as a music tutor and first began teaching in 2007.

SINGING & TIN WHISTLE

Christine Dowling

Introduction to Traditional Singing, Upper Intermediate and Advanced Tin Whistle
Born in Chicago, Christine has been living in Belfast since 1994. She learned her music from like-minded musicians living in the midwest in the 1980s, travelling to Ireland as often as possible. She has been performing and teaching in the USA, Ireland, and Europe ever since. Her influences are primarily the flute and fiddle players of South Sligo and the the singers from the Ulster tradition.

Christine has been teaching with BelfastTrad since 2003 and is currently the Society's administrator.

TIN WHISTLE & SET DANCING

Tim Flaherty

Beginner Level (no experience)
Set Dancing (all levels)

Tim is a dancer, accordion player and Tin whistler. From Belfast, he is known throughout the continent for his gentle good humour. Tim regularly teaches set dancing around Ireland and Europe and plays a key role in the delivery of dance tuition for Belfast Trad. He doubles as our beginners and improvers tin whistle tutor.

 

UILLEANN PIPES

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Tom Clarke

Beginner and Intermediate Level
Tom Clarke is well-known in piping circles. He has been teaching the pipes for many years now and is very skilled in explaining the intricacies of this ancient and beautiful instrument. While the pipes are not the easiest instrument to learn, their music has been an essential component of Irish music for over 300 years. unparalleled. Tom also organises the annual Belfast Piping Tíonol, held every March. In 2005 Tom was honoured to receive an award from Na Píobairí Uilleann in recognition and appreciation of over 30 years of dedicated teaching on the uilleann pipes.

 

SEAN NÓS/OLD STYLE STEP DANCE

                         All Dance Classes Are Held In The Crescent Arts Centre on Monday Evenings                             

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Bernie McGinley

Sean nós/traditional step dancing

Berni, originally from Co. Tyrone, has a family background in traditional Irish music and dance. She started dancing with BelfastTrad in 1995 and has learnt from many dancing legends including James Keane, Celine Tubridy, Patrick O’Dea and many others throughout Ireland and beyond. Berni has been involved in the teaching and performance of both set dancing and old-style step dancing in both Ireland and Europe and has been a tutor with BelfastTrad for several years.

 

Bernie Graham

Sean nós / traditional step dancing classes, both at the Crescent and at our Bangor outreach classes
Bernie was born in Bangor, Co Down, and has been dancing with BelfastTrad for over 25 years. Starting with step dancing, she progressed to learn sean nós and old style steps from such great masters as Joe O'Donovan, James Keane, Dan Furey, Frank McConnell and many more. She has travelled extensively through Europe, Ireland, America and more performing and providing workshops in the old style of traditional Irish Dance.