From September 2022, BelfastTrad will deliver its entire programme of classes in traditional music, song and dance at a new home at Stranmillis University College in south Belfast. Otherwise known as the Belfast Traditional Music and Dance Society, BelfastTrad believes that Stranmillis provides “the perfect environment” for its traditional arts programme, with “its custom-designed music and dance spaces, set in a spacious tree-lined campus… great parking facilities, a café, performance spaces and much more.”
According to the Society, “the Music Department at Stranmillis, a stand-alone building with a circular layout of performance studios, is the perfect setting for instrument and singing classes and the Orchard Building provides rooms with excellent floors for dancing.”
Stranmillis College is enthusiastic about BelfastTrad’s presence on campus and working in partnership to develop BelfastTrad’s programme of traditional arts education in this new space.
“The last two years presented tremendous challenges to BelfastTrad due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” said BelfastTrad Chair, Conall Mullan, “and we have successfully maintained a strong and vibrant society with the diligent hard work from our tutors, our dedicated volunteer board and the invaluable support from our members and student body.
“This autumn represents a new phase for BelfastTrad,” he continued, “as we welcome the return of in-person teaching for our complete programme of traditional arts classes at Stranmillis College. We look forward to welcoming both returning and new students to our new home.”
With almost 300 members, BelfastTrad provides over 40 classes a week in traditional arts, including music classes in all instruments, traditional singing, solo dancing and set dancing. It specialises in providing classes for adult learners and provides instrument hire for those just starting out on an instrument for the first time. In addition it also presents classes in tin whistle and fiddle for children under 12 years.
BelfastTrad supplements its weekly classes with other special events such as masterclasses, talks, céilidhe, sessions and student and tutor performances.
The next term of classes will begin in September. Enrolment will open online mid-August.