Festival Workshops

The Austin Celtic Festival is proud to offer students and interested parties the chance to be directed and counseled by some of today's leading experts in Celtic music. In general our paid workshops, led by our headliners are casual, question and answer arenas for persons already familiar with the subject instrument and are looking for progressive instruction or a chance to ask more complex questions. You should also be prepared for practical application of a particular technique or style favored by the headlining instructor.

Direction and focus of the workshops can be fluid and develop based on the needs of the attending students. Although, they might not necessarily be needed, a well prepared student will have their instrument, pen and paper and a recorder with them. These workshops are limited to a smaller number to be more effective. Novice or beginners may purchase tickets and attend as observers.

Reminders


  • You must purchase a ticket to the festival in addition to the workshop fee.
  • Print out the email confirmation page from paypal as proof of payment for the workshop.
  • No unattended children at the workshops or on the festival grounds.
  • Please refrain from trafficking in and out of the workshops out of respect for the instructors.

SATURDAY WORKSHOPS

Irish Ceili Dance
Inishfree Irish Dance for all ages

Hosted by the award winning dancers of the Inishfree Austin Dance Academy. Learn the "Ceili" or "Party" style of Irish dance. All ages welcome!

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Time: 12:45-1:30 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Macallan Scotch Tasting
* 21 and older

Hosted by Kieron Elliott, an offical Macallan Ambassador, explore the finest Macallan Scotches and offerings from this brand.

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Instructor: Kieron Elliott
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m.
Fee: $25

Highland Dance for all ages

Hosted by the Champion dancers of St. Thomas Episcopal School in Houston. Learn about and try your hand at one of the most spectacular dance forms in world history.

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Time: 3:30-4:15 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

 

Scottish Country Dance
Austin Scottish Dance Alliance for all ages

Join the Scottish Country Dance Alliance for a workshop on the country style dancing of Scotland. All ages welcome and do not forget to visit their bake sale held in the East side Pavillion throughout the weekend. Their goodies sell out fast!

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Time: 4:45-5:45 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Beginning Irish Guitar

Learn the elements of beginning Irish guitar with instructor Jeff Moore. Jeff is a highly sought after accompaniest and is currently playing with his band Aidan around Austin. This is a free workshop and open to all interested attendees of the fest.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructor: Jeff Moore
Time: 12:30-1:30 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Beginning Bodhran (Irish Drum)

Self taught as a player, he pursued playing in sessions and in bands for many years and still enjoys playing music in local sessions. Rob has taught bodhran playing at festivals and summer schools in the US and Europe, and occasionally arranges workshops in his home when well known players are visiting. He is also one of the world's top bodhran makers.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructor: Rob Forkner
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Beginning IRISH FIDDLE

Christopher Buckley grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and has been playing violin since the age of 3. His introduction into the tradition of Irish fiddle came when he was 14 years old under the direction of the renowned Irish fiddler Martin Dowling. Martin instilled in him a great love and deep appreciation for the music. Christopher has also studied under the direction of world-class fiddle players: Liz Carroll, Brendan Mulvihill and James Kelly. Christopher has received numerous awards and recognitions for his outstanding achievements in Irish music. He was a recipient of the Ed Ward scholarship and has won first place awards in the mid-western Fleadh Cheoil, allowing him to compete in three All-Ireland world competitions.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructor: Chris Buckley
Time: 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

FUN WITH THE IRISH LANGUAGE

Join the Gaelic League of Austin to learn some of the key phrases and fun word in the Irish Language. Look for their books and information and the workshop in the East Side Building/Pavillion

Location: East Side Pavilion
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Advanced Irish Fiddle

Location: Workshop Tent
Instructor: Liz Carroll - A Chicago native Liz is a junior and senior All-Ireland Fiddle Champion. Also, she is a recipient of the National Heritage Fellowship Award.
Time: 12:30-1:30 p.m.
Fee: $15

Intro to Bagpipes

Location: Workshop Tent
Instructor: Lorne MacDougall - A three times finalist for the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the year, a nominee for 2012 Scots Trad Instrumentalist of the Year and was one of the first sentient beings (that we know of, from this planet) to qualify with the BA Scottish Music-Piping degree at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow.
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m.
Fee: $12

Irish Concertina

Location: Workshop Tent
Instructor: Naill Vallely - His fearless exploration of the concertina’s undiscovered capabilities has helped redefine its role in irish music. Based since 1988 in Cork City, Niall was a founding member of the well-known group Nomos. He also played a prominent part in Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin’s ‘River of Sound’ television project and has performed in recent years with piping great Paddy Keenan, bluegrass mandolinist Tim O’Brien, and singer Karan Casey, his partner in life as well as music.
Time: 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Fee: $12

SUNDAY WORKSHOPS

Irish Ceili Dance
Inishfree Irish Dance for all ages

Hosted by the award winning dancers of the Inishfree Austin Dance Academy. Learn the "Ceili" or "Party" style of Irish dance. All ages welcome!

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Time: 1:00-2:15 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Macallan Scotch Tasting
* 21 and older

Hosted by Kieron Elliott, an offical Macallan Ambassador, explore the finest Macallan Scotches and offerings from this brand.

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Instructor: Kieron Elliott
Time: 2:45-3:45 p.m.
Fee: $25

Scottish Country Dance
Austin Scottish Country Dance Society for all ages

Join the ASCDS' Youth Group for a workshop on the country style dancing of Scotland. All ages welcome and do not forget to visit their bake sale held in the East side Pavillion throughout the weekend. Their goodies sell out fast!

Location: Kelpie Tent Stage
Time: 4:15-5:45 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Beginning Irish Flute and Tin Whistle

John Williams is internationally regarded as one of the foremost players of Irish music today. With five All-Ireland titles to his credit, John is the only American-born competitor ever to win first place in the Senior Concertina category. His additional talents on flute, button accordion, bodhran, and piano distinguish him as a much sought after multi-instrumentalist in the acoustic scene around the world.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructor: John Williams
Time: 12:45-1:45 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Irish Ballads Song Circle

Karan Casey has long been one of the most innovative provocative and imitated voices in Irish traditional and folk music. Her career has spanned twenty five years from the early days as a jazz performer in George’s Bistro in Dublin to her heady days in New York with the band Solas to her now established solo career and she has sold over half a million albums.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructor: Karan Casey
Time: 2:15-3:15 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Scottish Song Circle

Roy, as many of you will know, is along with Phil Smillie one of the two longest serving professional members of the Tannahills. He plays guitar, sings lead vocals, tells silly stories, and keeps us all laughing through adversity on the road. Roy has also done a lot of songwriting. He has recorded a solo album called "Not Only But Also..." including many of his own songs plus other favorites that he'd always wanted to record but hadn't had the chance.

Location: Seelie Court
Instructors: Roy Gullane and Phil Smillie
Time: 4:00-5:15 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop

Intermediate Irish Fiddle

Location: Workshop Tent
Instructor: Mari Black - Drawing on elements of many diverse musical styles including jazz, tango, folk, western classical, as well as Celtic, American, and Canadian fiddling, Mari’s work encompasses all facets of performing, teaching, and musical scholarship.
Time: 2:15-3:30 p.m.
Fee: $10

Advanced Irish Fiddle

Location: Workshop Tent
Instructor: Oisín MacDiarmada - A graduate in Music Education from Trinity College Dublin/RIAM, Oisín Mac Diarmada began playing fiddle at a young age in Co. Clare, subsequently moving to Co. Sligo and developing a deep interest in the playing style of the North Connacht region. Founder of the group Téada in 2001 with whom he has recorded a number of albums on the Gael Linn label, Oisín is also a regular solo performer.
Time: 12:45-2:00 p.m.
Fee: $10

Fun With Irish Language

Join the Gaelic League of Austin to learn some of the key phrases and fun word in the Irish Language. Look for their books and information and the workshop in the East Side Building/Pavillion

Location: East Side Pavillion/Building
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m.
Fee: FREE workshop