Document Type

Theses, Ph.D


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Publication Details

This thesis is submitted to the Technological University Dublin, Conservatory of Music and Drama for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, December 2010.


Prior to commencing the research for this dissertation I had composed a number of concert works which were largely inspired by traditional Irish music. The most significant of these include String Quartet No. 2 – The Cranning (2004-2005) and Music for the Departed (2006) for fiddle, violin and guitar. The main goal of my research for this dissertation was to enable me to continue to refine my approach of creating original compositions that are inspired by aspects of traditional Irish music, contemporary classical music and other styles. It is important to emphasise the fact that my engagement with traditional music is a natural one derived from my role as a performer of traditional music. I use elements from traditional music purely because I have a great love of traditional music. It would be very dishonest of me to exclude this influence from my concert works. So I have chosen to embrace it as fully as possible by deeply immersing myself in the study of traditional music. The research period for this dissertation has been the most intensive in this regard.


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