MA in Irish Traditional Music Performance From University of Limerick

Program Overview

The MA in Irish Traditional Music Performance is a one-year, full-time postgraduate programme designed to provide advanced tuition in the performance of Irish Traditional Music. Instrumental and vocal tuition is provided by a community of world-renowned traditional performers and tutors. Past tutors have included Frankie Gavin, Liam O'Flynn, Martin Hayes, Matt Cranitch, Michael McGoldrick amongst many others. Academic skills relating to the understanding and critical examination of repertoire, sources and styles of performance, as well as an examination of modern, vocational, non-performance skills such as music business and music technology, form an essential part of the programme content.

This programme will develop music skills and other associated skills appropriate to the modern performance of traditional Irish music.

  • To provide a learning environment for advanced performance in Traditional Irish Music to the highest standard;
  • To honour the artistic integrity, history, and identity of the performance practice within an academic and performance orientated context; 
  • To facilitate interactivity with other performance practices; 
  • To assist each individual performer in 'finding his or her voice' through traditional music performance; 
  • To facilitate the cross-fertilisation of both the academic and performance pursuits of postgraduate performing music, dance and academic programmes; 
  • To equip the student with the necessary vocational skills for modern professional performance contexts.


  Course Duration

12 Months

  Tuition Fee



IELTS: 6.5 TOEFL: 90


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Semester 1    

  • MU5611 Irish Traditional Music Practicum 1
  • MD6021 Introduction to Fieldwork Methods
  • MD6071 Writing and the Documentation of Practice 1
  • MD6081 Critical Engagement with Irish Traditional Music
  • MD6091 Professional Development for the Performing Arts

Options: students can choose one option from the list below

  • MD6051 Independent Study 1
  • MD6102 Colloquium 1
  • MD6061 Introduction to Somatics 1
  • MD6031 Media Technologies for Performing Arts and Arts Research
  • MD6101 Interdisciplinary Improvisation
  • MD6041 Introduction to Ritual Studies

Semester 2

  • MU5612 Irish Traditional Music Practicum 2
  • MU6022 Irish Traditional Music Project
  • MD6062 Critical Contexts for Arts Management and Cultural Policy

Options: students can choose one option from the list below

  • MD6052 Independent Study 2
  • MD6111 Colloquium 2
  • MD6072 Writing and the Documentation of Arts Practice 2
  • MD6092 Introduction to Somatics 2
  • BR5001 Broadening Through Awareness, Activism and the Arts

Semester 3 : MD5522 Final Presentation

  • A primary degree in a suitable discipline with first or second class honours or an approved professional qualification (Primary Degree: Level 8 - National Qualifications Authority of Ireland).
  • An interview will be required in all cases, as well as an audition where necessary. Candidates may be required to submit additional audio visual and/or written material.
  • Careers: The prime focus of the course is the development of performers so many past students have gone on to develop careers as traditional musicians. However students have gone on to use skills acquired through this MA in a number of other fields including education (at primary, post-primary, secondary and tertiary levels), technology, arts management, etc.

Tuition Fees

These are based on ResidencyCitizenshipCourse requirements.

Review the three groups of criteria to determine your fee status as follows

  1. Residency
    • You must have been living in an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland for at least 3 of the 5 years before starting your course
  2. Citizenship
    • You must be a citizen of an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland or have official refugee status
  3. Course Requirements (all must be met)
    • You must be a first time full-time undergraduate (Exceptions are provided for students who hold a Level 6 or Level 7 qualification and are progressing to a Level 8 course in the same general area of study).
    • You must be undertaking a full-time undergraduate course of at least 2 year’s duration
    • You cannot be undertaking a repeat year of study at the same level unless evidence of exceptional circumstances eg serious illness is provided (in which case this condition may be waived)


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