This is the current line up of our teachers for 2023. More tutors might be added as soon as we have them confirmed for Craiceann 2023.

Aimée Farrell Courtney’

The promise shown by acclaimed bodhrán player Aimée Farrell Courtney’s debut performance in Dublin’s National Concert Hall at the tender age of eight was realised when she won the 2010 World Bodhrán Championship.
Since then she has gone on to collaborate with musicians such as Donal Lunny, Liam O’Flynn, and Alyth McCormack and perform in venues such as The O2 Arena (Dublin) and The Hermitage Theatre (Russia). Aimée’s love of music is evident in her teaching, which has led her to conduct workshops across Ireland, Europe and the USA. During 2012 she developed a music education programme for primary school level based on practical musicianship in the classroom. Aimée holds a Bachelor of Music degree from DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama, specialising in Irish Traditional Music. Graduating with First Class Honours, Aimée was also awarded the Leo Rowsome Gold Medal for outstanding traditional performance and the Michael McNamara Gold Medal for outstanding overall performance.


Siobhán O'Donnell

Siobhán being from Sligo was infuenced heavily by the energetic and bouncing rhythm found in Sligo music, reflecting this on her mastery and knowledge of tunes in her playing. Siobhán’s love for singing in English and Irish and lilting has been passed on in her family for generations, hailing from a well known traditional singing background. Siobhán has won multiple All-Ireland titles in bodhrán, singing and lilting. Siobhán is a member of the highly acclaimed “The Border Collies”, along with her father Colm. In 2010, Siobhan emigrated to Australia when she was commissioned by the Irish National Association in Sydney to promote Irish music, song and culture in the region. She set up a music school for adults and children and performed at folk festivals across the country. Siobhan remarks on how she has now ‘happily’ returned home to Ireland and lives in Dublin. She just released her first solo CD “Beautiful Affair”

Andy Kruspe

Huntsville-based bodhrán player Andy Kruspe has performed and recorded with several muscians and bands throughout the Southeastern United States. His playing has supported bands in several genres, including Irish Traditional, Celtic, Old Time, and Contra Dance Bands. Andy is also active as a teacher, having presented workshops at several universities, clinics, and festivals. In addition to his love of performance, Andy is also passionate about the academic side of this uniqely Irish instrument. He co-presented a session on the bodhrán at the 2013 Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC), has taught many workshops and clinics at several universities and colleges, and has published a comprehensive method, The Bodhrán Primer. He finished his second book, Playing the Tune (a method of techniques for accompanying Irish traditional tunes), in summer of 2015 and his third book (First Steps) aimed at beginners in 2017. Andrew holds Master of Music and Bachelor of Music degree.

Jim Higgins

His bodhran playing is full of baselines and very supportive for the tunes. No wonder he is in high demand as a live and studio artist. Jim hails from Renmore in Galway. Born into a musical family, he went on to study music in University College Cork under Micheal O Suilleabhain amongst others. While in Cork, Jim caught ‘the bodhran bug’, playing alongside players such as Mel Mercier, Colm Murphy and Frank Torpey. He went on to play drums with fellow Galwegians ‘The Sawdoctors’ following a four year stint with ‘The Riverdance Show’ which took him around the world. He is an honorary member of the Donegal based traditional group ‘Altan’ having recorded and toured extensively with them for the last fifteen years from the Hollywood Bowl to the Sydney Opera House. He has recorded and performed with such luminaries as Paul Brady, Christy Moore, Liam O’Flynn, Donal Lunny, Bill Whelan, Martin O’Connor and Lunasa.

Cormac Byrne

Cormac Byrne is a bodhrán player and percussionist from Waterford, Ireland and is now based in the UK. He has received many awards for his work including The BBC Young Folk Award and was winner of the BBC Fame Academy Education Bursary in 2006. Cormac has appeared at numerous festivals around the world and has toured extensively. Primarily playing with Mercury Music Prize Nominee, Seth Lakeman, he was also a founder member of BBC award winning band, Uiscedwr.His versatility has seen him in much demand across many genres, both live and in the studio, from Traditional Irish and Folk, World Music, Classical, Jazz and Pop. Cormac Byrne has given Bodhrán and Percussion workshops and clinics for several organisations and universities including Celtic Connections, Leeds College of Music, Folkus, The Music Workshop Company, The Music Room in Cleckheaton and several youth music groups around the UK and Ireland.

Colm Phelan

“Colm Phelan is one of Ireland’s leading young percussionists, and an exceptional Bodhrán player, providing new dimensions to the voice instrument” – Niall Keegan, Course Director, BA Irish Music and Dance.
Colm is a winner of numerous All Ireland titles down through the years with his proudest achievements being the first ever World Bodhrán Champion, in Miltown, Co Kerry in 2006, and in the same year winning the All Ireland in Letterkenny for the second year in succession. Colm has studied Irish Music and Dance at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick. He was the first Bodhran player to graduate from the BA who has spent his entire four years studying the Bodhran as his main instrument. He is touring wold-wide with his band Goitse and has released a solo CD (The Full Circle) in 2012.

Rolf Wagels

Rolf hails from Hanover, Germany. He is a member of the highly praised trad Irish trad bands Cara and Steampacket. He has played all over Europe incl. Ireland and with Cara he also toured in the US over the last seven years, headlining festivals like the Milwaukee Irish Fest and Kansas City Irish fest. Cara was voted „Top Group 2010“ und „Best New Irish Artist 2009“ in the prestigious Irish Music Awards. His teaching skills were shaped lecturing at the University of Hannover as his daytime job and he gives regular workshops in Germany and Europe since 1996. With drum maker Christian Hedwitschak he developed his own drum line and he also released a CD focusing on the bodhrán in 2011.