MAD WEEK LECTURES
As part of the Lunchtime Electives and Workshops offerings, MAD Week presents daily lectures by guest subject matter experts. MAD Week students (full time, part-time AM & Part-time PM) may attend any or all of the lectures at no additional cost.
Non-students may attend the lectures for a fee of $75 for the entire week. Non-students register here
Monday: Patrick Egan ( Pádraig Mac Aodhgáin), Exploring the riches of digital archives of Irish traditional music
Among the collections of audio recordings in the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress lies a treasure trove of Irish traditional music from the twentieth century. There are audio copies of wax cylinders, 78 rpm discs, reel to reel and cassette tapes that represent the work of collectors, concert organizers and researchers. In the digital age it is now possible to re-combine these recordings using digital tools and techniques as we imagine new ways to re-combine and represent them. This talk will present a work-in-progress for Patrick's project, entitled, "Connections in Sound", which seeks to understand more fully the role that archives and collections might play in the ways that we as performers have access to these recordings.
Tuesday: Francesca Winch, Seeing Ireland with group music and dance tours
Join Ches Winch for a virtual lunchtime stroll through Ireland as she explores both the most popular tourist sites and the lesser known byways that make any trip to The Emerald Isle magical. Whether your interest be Ireland's history, music, dance, language, or simply her beautiful vistas, this lecture will explore all aspects of travel throughout The Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland as well. No matter your interests, Ireland beckons!
Wednesday: Brian O hAirt, Sean nós dance
Sean-nós dancing has gained immense popularity over the last two decades due to global exposure created by the economics of the Celtic Tiger. Workshops, festivals, digital media, and competitions have increased demand and access to this dance form beyond the relatively isolated region of Conamara--its home place. However, this acclaim has come with a price as its earlier identity tied to language, geography, civil rights, and family pedigrees becomes exploited by new economic models brought about by the now defunct Celtic Tiger. Explore the historical context of sean-nós dancing as we delve into archival material and early written accounts made at the turn of the 20th century and its resurgence following the Gaeltacht Civil Rights Movement. Join the discussion as we consider the cost of promoting tradition versus maintaining it, and what changes have occurred as it becomes increasingly modified for performance.
Thursday: Mike O'Malley, Policing the Jig: Francis O’Neill and the having of a lot of tunes
O’Neill’s important work in preserving the musical culture of Ireland and Irish America is well known. But O’Neill complained all the time about musicians who refused to share their tunes with him: “rare tunes were looked upon as personal property,” he wrote. He often had to bribe, bully, or trick people into giving up their music. In this talk we'll be looking at the musicians who didn’t want to share their tunes, and why they held them so closely.
Friday: Dr. Julia Topper, Rising Steps: Irish Dance and Music in Japan
Irish performing arts traditions are alive and thriving in Tokyo! Based off doctoral fieldwork conducted in 2016, this lecture provides an overview of the Irish dance and music scene in Tokyo, Japan. I'll discuss how Irish traditional music was initially introduced via the Japanese education system in the late 1800's before moving to look at today's scene and the impact these musicians and dancers are having in the larger transnational community. I will specifically be focusing on three modern competitive Irish step dance schools and a group of musicians and set dancers involved in CCÉ Tokyo and the Intercollegiate Celtic Festival.