Meet The Team

Our Kodaly Tutors 

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Lauraine Mc Dermott

B.Mus. (Hons. - performance), DIT Conservatory of Music & Drama

Roscommon native Lauraine McDermott began her musical journey in the Colman Traditional Music Centre, Sligo studying traditional singing and piano. Aged just 13, Lauraine became her parish organist and was later to take over as choral director of the parish choir.
In 2009, Lauraine became a student of DIT's Conservatory of Music & Drama undertaking a performance degree in traditional song and piano. During her time at the Conservatory, Lauraine had the opportunity to study with Seosaimhín Ní Bheaglaoich (Irish Song), Mary Corcoran (piano), Odhrán O Casaide (ensemble singing) and Tom Doorley (arranging).
An experienced performer, Lauraine has performed in The National Concert Hall, The O2 Arena, Vicar Street and Temple Bar Trad Festival, and of broadcasts for RTÉ Radio and Radio na Gaeltachta.
Lauraine specialised in Music Pedagogy (vocal and instrumental education) during the final year of her degree, which resulted in her gaining experience as both an individual instrumental teacher, and whole class primary music specialist. Lauraine is a recipient of the Nuala Levins Pedagogy Graduate Award, an award which recognises the student with the highest mark in pedagogy.
Lauraine is involved in tuition programmes provided by Music Generation Carlow, as well as a Kodály Practitioner for Music Generation Offaly Westmeath.

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Kim Magee

BA (Hons.) Applied Music, Dundalk Institute of Technology
MA Community Music, Irish World University of Music & Dance, Limerick University

Kim has built her vast experience in the area of music education and arts management through her continued work in Westmeath primary schools and Mullingar Town Band and more recently as an intern in Westmeath Arts Office.
As Assistant Director of the Mullingar Town Band, a role she has held since 2008, Kim works to, recruit new players (and teach them on both woodwind and brass instruments!), promote the band's activities in the community and undertakes administration associated with coordinating of tuition and rehearsal schedules, organising their many concerts, international tours and attendance at competitions.
Kim has, in addition, developed and adapted the Tobin teaching and learning approach to recorder in the course of her work in the primary school setting.
In spite of her heavy teaching and administrative commitments, Kim, a flautist and piccolo player, regularly performs as a member of Mullingar Town Senior Band at local, national and international marching and concert band performances and competitions, and is developing her interest in conducting.
Kim has been part of Music Generation Offaly Westmeath's journey since their application in November 2012, but it was in October 2013 that Kim became a Kodály Practitioner and is now bringing her many talents to Offaly school Scoil Chartaigh Naofa, Rahan.

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Cathríona Walsh

BA History & Political Science, University of Western Australia
Advanced Diploma in Performing Arts (Classical Music), Western Australia Academy of Performing Arts
Graduate Diploma of Education (Music), University of Western Australia

Limerick born Cathríona began her musical career aged 7 singing in the Choir at the Redemptorist Church in Limerick City. Aged just 8, Cathríona was a regular soloist.
Following her family's emigration to Western Australia in the late 80s, Cathríona maintained her passion for music and began to learn tin whistle, flute, button accordion, piano accordion and the fiddle. Aged 12, Cathríona became a pupil of the prestigious classical music programme at Churchlands Senior High School where she was to be a member of the school's Symphony Orchestra, School Choir, Vocal Ensembles and Chorales. However, Cathróna maintained her Irish heritage through her passion for Trad music. Cathríona is an experienced soprano having been involved in numerous operatic productions and and concerts in Australia, and it was opera that was to bring her home to Ireland when in 2010 whilst on holiday, a one month cultural rediscovery break turned into an unexpected opportunity for her when she was privileged enough to join Opera Ireland .
Cathríona is also an experienced Musical Director and Conductor and has taken her choirs to performances in the Perth Concert Hall, Burswood Theatre and even appeared on TV3's 'Good Morning Ireland'.
Cathríona regularly performs as a member of many choral and opera societies and can often be found sitting in on trad seisiúns in the Roscrea area.

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Natalie Flynn

BA (Hons.) Music and Irish, NUI Maynooth
MA (Music - performance and musicology) - NUI Maynooth

Natalie is from Kinnegad where, aged 8, she began piano lessons with Liz O'Rourke. At the age of 12, through the Midland Arts tuition scheme operated by Westmeath VEC, Natalie had the opportunity to receive violin lessons with Vincent Hunt. Natalie progressed rapidly through the RIAM grade examinations culminating in a High Achiever Award from the Royal Irish Academy of Music.
In addition, Natalie joined the Irish Midlands Youth Orchestra (conducted by Vincent Hunt), and maintained her membership until she left for university. Following graduation, Natalie returned to the IMYO as a violin tutor.
When in 2008 Natalie began her studies at NUI Maynooth, Christian Tecklenborg (Blackrock) became her violin teacher, before she became a student of Sébastien Petiet (RTÉ Concert Orchestra) with whom she still studies.
As both a soloist and in ensemble, Natalie is an experienced and active performer, performing regularly locally and nationally. Most recently Natalie was delighted to perform as part of the string section of the Clare Memory Orchestra project.
Despite Natalie's performance engagements and commitment to her growing individual teaching practise on both piano and violin, and the teaching of string programmes in a number of primary schools, she still finds time to follow her interest in vocal music and is currently a member of the Cathedral of Christ the King Choir, Mullingar. It is as a singer that Natalie brings her expertise to the Music Generation Offaly Westmeath Kodály programme.

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Hilary Roche

BA Music and Maths, UCD.

Hilary is from Athlone where she still lives with her family. 
An experienced teacher, Hillary has built her wide-ranging knowledge from working in the primary school sector since starting out as a primary class teacher 'some time ago!' As a class teacher, Hilary maintained her love for music by ensuring that her pupils had the opportunity to learn about music through class participation often leading to school performances. When Hilary left mainstream primary teaching she began to promote music in the classroom exclusively. Prior to joining Music Generation Offaly Westmeath, Hilary had already built up an extensive practise teaching recorder, tin whistle and leading choirs in schools across Athlone and Ballinasloe. On joining MGOW, Hilary became involved in the Kodály programme. On a weekly basis, Hilary would normally teach upwards of 500 children. Hilary 's choirs have performed as part of the National Children's Choir, The Hallelujah Choir and the CBOI Peace Proms. 
In addition to the day job, Hilary has built a private practise teaching piano from beginner to diploma level, is heavily involved in preparing the choir for the weekly Children's Mass, and regularly plays organ in her local parish. As if that isn't enough, keen to keep performing, Hilary is also a member of the recently established, 60 member, all female, Athlone a Cappella barbershop chorus.

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Ailbhe Kelly

BMus(Hons) NUI Maynooth
Professional Diploma in Education (Music) University of Limerick

A native of Ballycumber Co. Offaly, Ailbhe's background is in music education and performance. Always musical growing up, Ailbhe began her studies on piano aged 7 and progressed through the RIAM examinations before completing the Associate and Licentiate Performance Diploma's in pianoforte playing, and the Fellowship Teaching Diploma, both from the Victoria College of Music, London. During her time at NUI Maynooth, Ailbhe studied piano with Martin Fahy, and was to major in performance in her final year. With her degree complete, Ailbhe proceeded to follow her interest in music education commencing her teacher training at the University of Limerick. During her time in Limerick, Ailbhe was fortunate to see first hand the impact of teaching music in primary and secondary schools and this was to reaffirm her enthusiasm, passion and belief that music education should be open to all young people. Since joining Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath Ailbhe has embraced the opportunities to further her own experience and education through continual professional development opportunities in Kodaly Music Education and in the choral music education professional development courses with Dr. Doreen Rao. In addition to her school based work, Ailbhe has built a thriving private practise in piano tuition and music grinds, and would maintain her love of performing though her accompaniment work for local singers and instrumentalists. Each week Ailbhe estimates she teaches over 350 children including those involved in St. Manchan's Choir, of which she is Musical Director.

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Geraldine Relph

BA (music) NUI Maynooth
MA in Twentieth Century Music Queen's University, Belfast

Ger Relph is originally from Dublin but now lives in Co. Westmeath with her family.

Her music training began when, aged 8, she began guitar lessons at primary school. Aged 10, Ger began learning the accordion and was to go on to study with Daniel Walsh for 13 years. Her skill as an accordion player was recognised when in 1996 she featured as one of the four accordionists who recorded Tchaikovsky's "Suite for Orchestra" with the National Symphony Orchestra.
Following her graduation from NUI Maynooth, Ger continued her studies at Queen's University in Belfast where she completed an MA in Twentieth Century Music in before going on to be a librarian for a short spell, and a production assistant for BBC Radio 3.

However, it was during her postgraduate studies when Ger began giving tutorials to first and second year music students at NUI Maynooth in keyboard harmony that her love for teaching began, and despite a holding a number of different positions, Ger has been teaching piano and guitar for the last 10 years, and has built up a successful private teaching practise. Always keen to develop her skills as a teacher and a musician, Ger began to explore opportunities and music education styles which focused on young pre-school children (the ages of her own daughters at the time). During this research Ger came across Kindermusik®.

Ger went on to train as a Kindermusik educator, received her licence to teach in 2010 and has been working in a number of pre-schools and childcare settings in the Mullingar area since. Kindermusik® shares much with the Kodaly philosophy of music education for children, and so it was a natural progression for Ger to join Music Generation Offaly/Westmeath as a member of the Kodaly tutor team in 2013.

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Carmel Whelan

BMus (Hons)[composition], DIT Conservatory of Music & Drama

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Majella Killeen

Diploma in Teaching, Cork School of Music
Associate of the London College of Music (ALCM)