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The festival of St. Patrick was celebrated last week, and with it a reflection of what it is to be Irish on a global scale. A time to view ourselves through the eyes of others. As the global experiment in greening the planet expands, our thoughts turn inwards, because this very cultural identity has been under siege now for more than a year. The essence of what it means to be Irish has been appropriated by the pandemic and may yet be its single biggest victim.
Imagine for a moment that it is your birthday, and that someone special in your life has bought you a vintage camera that, while beautiful and of its kind quite perfect, only shoots in black and white. What now happens is the re-examination of the world about you looking for objects and settings of high contrast that will look beautiful in a mono chromatic setting.
Since last March, we have engaged with the majority of students through the use of online platforms like Zoom and Hangouts.
For many parents, this remains the perception of online education. Indeed for many teachers, it was feared that this method would greatly impede their ability to drive a meaningful program of learning, but that is not what happened.
Maoin Cheoil na Gaillimhe is more than a school of music. It is an idea. An idea that every school-going child in Galway should have access to high quality music education. More than this it is the belief that access to this education should not be limited by financial, social or geographical limitations.