Siamsa Tíre

Graduates Showcase National Folk Theatre Training Academy

Graduates Showcase National Folk Theatre Training Academy

Third Year Graduates perform ‘Labhraí Loinnsigh’ as final year showcase

Siamsa Tíre was proud to present its Level 3 Final Year pupils of the National Folk Theatre (NFT) Training Academy at their end of year graduation show on Tuesday 29th May.  This performance showcased what the students have learned over the previous three years at Siamsa Tíre in the disciplines of traditional Irish singing, the Munnix style of traditional Irish step dancing, drama and music. There are nine Level 3 Final Year pupils focusing on the principles of song, dance and drama with an additional six musicians focusing on traditional music.

The theme for each final year show is different reflecting the varied and diverse interpretations by the students.  When devising this year’s show, ‘Labhraí Loinnsigh’, the pupils reviewed Folk stories and discussed why they would like to work on this story.  The final year pupils worked together to finalise the theme and then helped to build a performance around this choosing music, songs and dance to compliment this theme.

This year’s show as an adaptation of an Irish story about a King who lived in Ireland long ago. He always wore a cap and nobody really knew why. Labhraí had a secret -right underneath that old cap on his head, Labhraí Loinnsigh had horses ears. Cluasa chapaill a bhí air a dhuine uaisle.

“We are always very proud of our third year graduate students and have enjoyed working with them over the last three years.  They have shown great commitment to the traditional arts and have been very creative in interpreting this Irish story for this year’s show. It was a great evening’s entertainment for family, friends and those interested in traditional Irish culture!”, said Anne O’Donnell, Training & Development Officer, The National Folk Theatre of Ireland.

The National Folk Theatre Training Academy is aimed at young people from the age of 7 to 12.  Auditions take place annually with the 2018/2019 auditions taking place on Friday 15th June from 6-8pm at Teach Siamsa na Carraige, Dingle and on Saturday 16th June from 10am – 2pm at Siamsa Tíre, Tralee. Applicants must have a song and an Irish dance piece prepared for their audition and need to demonstrate some previous interest in Irish music and/or dance, as this training is not for complete beginners. Auditions are by appointment only.  Successful candidates take classes weekly in Siamsa Tíre for a period of three years from October to May. A fee per terms applies.

The strength of Siamsa Tíre’s performing company lies in the extended Community Cast who have trained and performed with the company over more than forty years. The National Folk Theatre Community Cast of performers complete a minimum of three years of training with the company before going on to an advanced training class as part of their performance preparation. Students who have completed the training offered by Siamsa Tíre have gone on to achieve national and international success as performers, including John Fitzgerald, Suzie Griffin, Sarah Jane Drummey, Justin Walsh and Paula Murrihy.

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