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Upcoming Workshops:

May 14:  Workshops with members of Lunasa
Kevin Crawford - Irish flute
Cillian Vallely - Uilleann Piping
May 25:  Current Session Tunes of Western Ireland
Colleen Shanks -
Repertoire workshop for all instruments

Workshops with members of Lúnasa

Irish flute - Kevin Crawford
Uilleann Pipes - Cillian Vallely


Sunday, May 14th, 2017, 2:00-3:30pm

Ann Arbor, MI (register for details)

Cost: $30 for DIMA members, $35 for non-members

Registration via email at

Kevin Crawford and Cillian Vallely, members of the powerhouse group, Lúnasa, will be performing at Conor O'Neill's on May 14th as part of the Strayaway Child Concert Series.  Prior to the show, they will be hosting workshops on Irish flute and uilleann pipes, respectively. The workshops will be at private homes on the west side of Ann Arbor, just minutes from downtown.  For address details, please email us at



About the teachers:

Joining Lunasa in 1997 and 1999 respectively, Kevin Crawford and Cillian Vallely have become key components of a group which has become one of the most acclaimed and influential bands in the recent history of Irish music. Having released seven band albums and worked on numerous solo projects though, the duo decided to combine their individual talents and create something different. The result was the critically acclaimed album, “On Common Ground”, which was awarded The Irish American News album of the year in 2010.

Cillian Vallely is an uilleann pipes and low whistle player from Armagh in the north of Ireland. In recent years, he has played and recorded with Bruce Springsteen, Natalie Merchant, Mary Chapin-Carpenter, Tim O’Brien, and Riverdance in addition to recording as a guest on over 60 albums. With Lunasa, he has played at The Hollywood Bowl, Glastonbury Festival, Womad Aledaide, Edmonton Folk Festival in addition to multiple tours of Asia, Australia, US and Europe.

Born in Birmingham and living in County Clare, Kevin Crawford is an exceptional flute, whistle, and bodhran player and was awarded the title of Irish Echo Musician of the Year in 2000 following the release of his 2 successful solo albums, “In Good Company” and “D Flute”. Before joining Lunasa, Kevin made two albums with the acclaimed instrumental band, Moving Cloud, 1995’s self- titled album followed by “Foxglove” in 1998. Other noteable album credits from this period included Grianan, Raise the Rafters, Joe Derrane, Sean Tyrrell and The Sanctuary Sessions. One of Kevin’s latest side-projects is the formation of a new super-trio, The Teetotallers alongside John Doyle and fiddler Martin Hayes.

About the workshop:

The workshops is intended for players of all skill levels interested in Traditional Irish music.  Please bring your instrument and a recording device.


For any questions, or to register and get the location details, please contact us at

Current Session Tunes of Western Ireland

A Repertoire workshop for all instruments
Colleen Shanks

Thursday, May 25th, 2017, 7:00-9:30pm

Green Wood FUMC

1001 Green Rd, Ann Arbor, MI

(Note: There will be no slow session this night.

A short session will take place after the workshop)

Cost: $30 for DIMA members, $35 for non-members

No advance registration required

We're proud to welcome back former DIMA Chair Colleen Shanks, who's been pursuing an MA at the World Academy of Irish Music & Dance at the University of Limerick. Colleen will be with us on May 25th to share some fresh new tunes that she's been learning and playing through her program, and around the session scene in Ennis, Co. Clare. The focus will be on teaching tunes that can be put into sets, and may include  jigs, barndances, marches, reels and more!


About the workshop:

Colleen will be covering several tunes during this 2.5 hour workshop, so the pace will be targeted more for intermediate and above players, but beginners are more than welcome to come along, pick up what they can, and record the tunes to take home to work on if it moves too fast. 


Please note that this workshop will be in the main hall at Green Wood, so there will be no session at 7:30.  (Also note that the start time for this is 7:00 pm, not 7:30!) There will be a chance to play tunes for a while after the workshop finishes, and all are welcome as always, though there will not be a designated 'slow session' period on this night.

About the teacher:

Colleen Shanks hails from Michigan, and began her journey into traditional Irish music at the age of 11, when she first heard a recording of The Chieftains. Captivated by the sound of the music, she acquired her first tin whistle shortly after, and began teaching herself tunes. From there, she became immersed in Detroit's vibrant Irish music community and learned much of her music from Clare-born fiddler Mick Gavin, who has tutored and encouraged many young musicians in Michigan for the past 40 years. 

Colleen is currently pursuing an MA in Irish Traditional Music Performance from the University of Limerick's Irish World Academy. Her area of focus is uilleann piping and she has the great privilege of learning from Michael Blackie O'Connell, and attending masterclasses taught by the top exponents of uilleann piping. 

In Michigan, Colleen founded the Strayaway Child Concert Series, a monthly music series that features traditional Irish musicians, both upcoming and seasoned performers. She has toured the U.S with the Nashville based band The Celts, and is a regular performer at the annual Crossroads Ceili show at The Ark, Ann Arbor.


Past Workshops

February 2017

Fiddle Workshop - Technique and Tunes with Winifred Horan (Solas)

October 2016

"What Do You Hear?" - Active Listening Workshop with Nicolas Brown & Alison Perkins

July 2016

Bodhran Techniques for Intermediate/Advanced players with Tristan Pruss
Irish Fiddle- Intermediate/Advanced Technique and Tunes with Alison Perkins (Finvarra's Wren)
Beginning/Intro to Irish Flute and Tin Whistle with Nicolas Brown
Int/Advanced Irish Flute and Tin Whistle Tunes and Techniques with Colleen Shanks
Guitar Accompaniment for Traditional Irish Music with Michael Gavin

June 2016

Bodhran Basics for Beginner Players with Tristan Pruss
Irish Fiddle Basics - Technique and Ornamentation with Alison Perkins (Finvarra's Wren)
Irish Flute and Tin Whistle - Technique and Tunes with Colleen Shanks
Guitar Accompaniment for Traditional Irish Music with Michael Gavin

January 2016

Uilleann Pipes - Technique and Tunes with Sean Gavin (Bua, Nicgaviskey)
Irish Fiddle - Technique and Tunes with Kelsey Lutz

October 2015

Irish Flute Technique / All Instruments Repertoire with Michael Tubridy (The Chieftains)

April 2015

Members of Bua:

Uilleann Pipes  with Sean Gavin
Fiddle with Devin Shepherd

Guitar/Accompaniment with Brian Miller

Sean Nós Dancing with Brian Hart

September 2015

Uilleann Pipes - Technique and Tunes with John McSherry (the olllam, At First Light, Lúnasa)

May 2014

Uilleann Pipes Technique / All Instruments Repertoire with Paddy Keenan (The Bothy Band)

November 2012

Repertoire of Sliabh Luachra with Jackie Daly and Matt Cranitch

March 2012

Irish Fiddle - Technique and Tunes with Kevin Burke (The Bothy Band, Patrick Street)

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