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The times they are a changing ...

It's been a while since we've blogged . . . but we're back! So, by way of a quick catch up, just a little of what has happened in the last few months, and what's on the way . . .

String Together: the RIAM Junior String ensemble joined forces with St Peter's National School, Phibsborough, at the IAYO Festival of Youth Orchestras

Workshops Galore: RIAM Ensemble Fest has been all over the country for large regional events, and individual sessions for school and community groups. Everything from string orchestras to brass bands, chamber groups, swing bands, percussion ensembles, and accordion orchestras

Concert Hall Class: the Primary Ensemble Project drew to a mighty close with Primary school groups from across Ireland playing (and singing!) together in the NCH, under the expert guidance of RIAM's Hilda Milner, Fergus O'Carroll, and Nigel Flegg from the NCH

Waves of Talent: RIAM, in partnership with Carlow Youth Orchestra and Aspiro Choir, received Arts Council funding for a production of Britten’s work for children, ‘Noye’s Fludde’. A spectacular production with performances in Carlow and Dublin

Local Centre Exams: WELL DONE (!) to the thousands of super candidates who have been performing in the Local Centre Exams, and the amazing teachers and families that got them there (under unusual conditions, don't mention the snow!)

Making the Grade: we were delighted to see the release of Ken Wardrops beautiful film, in which RIAM played a little part and helped in the production. If you haven't seen it, you really should ...

Click here to see a list of screenings, and find more information Making the Grade

What's Next?

New Syllabi: we've been getting lots of interest (for obvious reasons) in the new syllabus, and we'll have information on that very soon. For some insight, information and advice on the new content, as well as performances from RIAM Faculty members from the actual New Syllabus (fact-check: this statement is true!), come along to the Teaching & Learning Network Conference 2018 

Summer Sounds at RIAM: this year we launch the first of our new Summer Sounds courses at RIAM, and this year hosts an orchestral course, and a band course. Open to 12-18 year olds that play string, wind, brass or percussion. Lots fun (hopefully some sun), and exciting music, finished with a gala concert Summer Sounds at RIAM

Key Skills: Réamonn Keary and Lorna Horan hit the road again later this year, and we'll have more info on that in the coming months. We'll be visiting more venues than ever, and for a day and a half this time, to cover the entire new syllabus. You might want get along to the Teaching & Learning Network Conference 2018 for a taster, and Conference attendees can avail of a Key Skills reduction

GDPR: you'll be receiving our newsletter very soon, if you are on the list. This will be an opportunity for you to confirm if you wish to stay in contact, and we hope you will! For those who aren't already signed up, you can register here T & L Network Newsletter. There's lots of exciting developments coming from RIAM, so you might want to hear that email inbox bell ringing with our Newsletter!

RIAM Connect: a brand new venture, and a coming together of various branches of RIAM. The Local Centre Exams, Teaching & Learning Network, and Outreach, will all fashion together under RIAM Connect. This means lots of interesting and new experiences to come in education, performance, and arts. The times they are a changing . . .

I am delighted to join the team at RIAM, and it comes at an exciting time with a wave of energy washing over music, arts, education, and culture in Ireland. With that in mind, I have been travelling around the country, meeting and greeting, re-establishing old relations and creating new ones. It also means, that we, the RIAM, are actively seeking out your input. Yes, YOUR input! What do you like in your everyday artistic lives? What can RIAM do to help in that manner? We are looking for new and exciting ways to help enrich everyone's experience, so if you've something to share, do so! We would love to hear from you!

Our Newsletter's will begin to feature teachers and students around the country, so get in touch if you would like to take part and share your story- performing and teaching around Ireland (and beyond) can be an amazing and challenging experience, we will feature some of those stories, that might help us all in our regular work and play.

Let the Connections continue,

Brendan Breslin
Head of RIAM Connect


Brendan Breslin

Brendan Breslin is the Head of RIAM Connect, course supervisor of the eCourse in Music Ensemble Direction, and project manager of RIAM Ensemble Fest. Prior to joining RIAM he performed as a member of the Band of An Garda Síochána, and is the Artistic Director of the Irish Youth Brass Band, Irish Film & Pops Orchestra, and the Ardee Concert Band.

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