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26/03/2020

Music Generation Kildare gets underway

Music Generation Kildare gets underway

Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board (KWETB) and Kildare County Council, together with Music Generation, is delighted to announce the appointment of Irish pianist, lecturer and traditional musician Alan Costello to the role of Music Generation Development Officer for Kildare.

In his new post Alan will develop and oversee an affordable, accessible programme of performance music education for children and young people ages 0 to 18 across the county. This will include building partnerships with music and arts tuition services in the area, coordinating with schools, youth and community groups to create ensembles, choirs and other initiatives, embracing all musical genres and styles.

Under the leadership of KWETB, Kildare is one of 25 areas now participating in Music Generation, Ireland’s national music education programme. Initiated by Music Network in 2010, Music Generation is co-funded by U2, The Ireland Funds, the Department of Education and Skills and Local Music Education Partnerships.

Alan’s appointment is an important milestone in the development of Music Generation Kildare. He will now commence a focussed phase of planning, working towards the implementation of a comprehensive programme of vocal and instrumental tuition later in the year.

Commenting on his new role Alan said: ‘I’m thrilled to be offered the opportunity to take up this exciting role as Music Generation Development Officer for County Kildare. As a graduate of NUIM I’ve experienced first-hand the rich musical talent and tradition that already exists within the county, across many musical genres. I’m looking forward to working with a skilled team of local musician educators and performers, to build upon these musical foundations. The aim of Music Generation Kildare is to help nurture children and young people through a series of music projects and performance routes, enabling them to develop their confidence, creativity and an active voice for music within their communities.’

Alan, a Tipperary native, has returned to Ireland after 12 years in the UK. As well as holding the posts of Musician Co-ordinator for the Scottish Ballet Associate programme and freelance company pianist for Scottish Ballet Programme, Alan was staff pianist and lecturer at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland as well as the Co-ordinator for the MMus Piano for Dance, the only full time MMus course in the world dedicated to training ballet pianists. Alan graduated from NUI Maynooth with both a BAMus and an MA (Performance and Musicology) before continuing his education in the UK, culminating in a PGCert in Learning and Teaching in Higher Arts Education. Whilst at NUIM Alan served as conductor of the renowned Maynooth University Chamber Choir. A keen traditional Irish musician, Alan is a regular fixture on the Fleadh and festival circuits both in Ireland and abroad. He has won numerous All-Ireland titles, including, in 1997, the senior Button Accordion, duet and trio titles, an incredibly rare feat.

Welcoming the announcement of Alan’s appointment, Chief Executive of KWETB Dr. Deirdre Keyes said: ‘We’re delighted to announce Alan’s appointment to this pivotal role at Music Generation Kildare. Alan’s extensive professional music career and his rich experience in music education will be invaluable in the post. This news now marks an exciting step in the implementation of the programme for Kildare and we very much look forward to working with Alan over the coming years to extend access to new musical opportunities for children and young people throughout the county.’

Kildare was among five new areas of Ireland selected for participation in Music Generation in May 2019, along with Kerry, Longford, Meath and Tipperary. The announcement of the five new counties was made as part of Creative Youth – a Creative Ireland Programme plan to enable the creative potential of every child and young person. Under the plan, the areas will be co-funded through the Department of Education and Skills to establish the programme within their county. This funding will be matched on a 50/50 basis by money raised locally, ensuring long-term sustainability into the future.

Further information about Music Generation Kildare is expected to be announced over the coming months. Keep an eye on our website and visit the Music Generation Kildare Facebook Page for updates.