Traditional Musicians from the CCSM performing in concert

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The Staff of the CCSM

A dedicated body of music staff who are enthusiastically enriching local communities in County Cork

The CCSM Trumpet Ensemble

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Woodwind players from the CCSM in performance

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Cellists from the CCSM Orchestra

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Brass Players from the CCSM orchestra in performance

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Violinists from the CCSM Orchestra

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The CCSM orchestra in Concert

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Cork ETB School of Music has moved to: CORK TRAINING CENTRE, ROSSA AVENUE, CORK. New Phone Number: 0214856346

Congratulations to the Cork ETB School of Music Award Winners 2016. Please click here to view a list of the Music Award Winners.


Alison Clarke: My Musical Journey

 

Alison Clarke performing in the Let’s Play Together Concert in Bantry

I started piano with Marie Fogarty in Colaiste Choilm when I was seven years old. My parents both have an interest in music and were keen to give me an opportunity to learn music. From the very start, I always looked forward to my weekly music lesson. Marie has always been extremely supportive to me and has given me many opportunities including giving me the chance to be on RTE2 when I got to go to the Blackrock Castle Observatory, taking me to the Rory Gallagher Exhibition and getting me into various workshops, to name but a few.

 

Marie also provided me with great opportunities through Music Makers. I was in Music Makers for five years and I enjoyed every minute of it. I learned theory that still stands to me today, both in my music lessons and in school for Junior Cert Music. I made great friends there who I’m still in contact with today! I always enjoyed the Music Makers classes and performing with other students my own age. We got to perform in many places with the Music Makers including DJ Murphy’s Christmas House, Oriel House Hotel, Colaiste Choilm, Glanmire Community College and my favourite place to perform – Treacy’s Charity Christmas Lunch. The best trip I ever went on with Music Makers was to see the Cork Pops Orchestra in Cork City Hall.

 

I have been involved in the Let’s Play Together programme since I was in 6th Class. I got to perform in a big concert in Bantry Church in my first year of the programme. I really enjoy the programme and I think it is a great experience for young musicians.

 

Alison Clarke performing on stageWhen I was 10 years old, I was given the opportunity to learn the viola with Niamh Quigley. Niamh is a great teacher and she is always encouraging and friendly. While I liked piano, I knew I needed to play another instrument if I wanted to have the opportunity to play in an orchestra. I was always in awe of orchestras whenever I went to see them perform in concerts, especially the Cork Youth Orchestra. I love learning the viola as it has introduced me to a new instrument and a new clef. It has a beautiful sound and I enjoy playing it particularly when I play it as part of the orchestra.

 

 

I am also very involved in music in my community and school. In my primary school in Ballinora, I was involved in the school trad band. I was the first ever viola player to join the band. I really enjoyed my time in the trad band because I had never really played traditional music on the viola before then. We entered Feis Maitiu with the school band and we won many competitions. In 2010 I was part of a Grupa Ceol with the girls in my class. We came second in Feis Maitiu. We were very proud of this achievement as we had formed this group ourselves and had not been together as long as most of the other competitors in the group. I played viola at my confirmation mass and I played piano and viola at many school masses and concerts. In my current school, Colaiste Choilm, I am a member of the newly formed school orchestra. We made our first appearance at the open night and hopefully will have many performances in the future!

 

As I mentioned earlier, I am very grateful for the opportunity I have been given to enjoy the orchestra experience. When I started the viola, the first orchestra I got involved in was the Ballincollig Junior Orchestra, conducted by Aisling Fitzpatrick. I moved on to join the County Cork Junior Orchestra, conducted by Helen McGrath and Conor O’ Connell. In 2011, I auditioned for the Junior Cork Youth Orchestra, conducted by Terry McCarthy. I really enjoyed this orchestra and I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to perform in the National Concert Hall with this orchestra in February 2012.

 

This year, I have joined the County Cork School of Music Senior Orchestra. The conductor is Michael Cummins. I am extremely lucky to be playing in the National Concert Hall again with this orchestra in February 2013. I am really looking forward to this concert and I am sure that it will be a night to remember.

 

My parents have always supported me with music, from dropping me to lessons to reminding me to do my practice when it’s needed. They have a great interest in music and have encouraged my interest from a young age. There was always some form of music in the house, whether it was listening to CDs or old records, singing or performing.

 

I am so grateful for the opportunity that I have been given to play music and thank my teachers and my family for their constant encouragement.

 

6th November 2012


 

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"It is really amazing to see what you achieved with those young people during the last few months and it is great to watch the joy on their faces while making such beautiful music."
- Olga O'Sullivan, CCSM Parent

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