Music - Ritual Chant & Song

The MA in Ritual Chant and Song is a one-year full-time programme which explores the voice and its use in ritual contexts. Western plainchant is the key repertoire studied and the programme has an association with Glenstal Abbey, a Benedictine monastery in the environs of the campus. Drawing on the expertise in Irish traditional music at the Academy, Irish traditional religious song is also studied as a key repertoire. Each year, guest tutors also introduce a number of additional ritual vocal repertoires, which have included a diversity of traditions from Shona ritual song to Georgian chant.

Entry requirements

A primary degree in a suitable discipline with first or second class honours or an approved professional qualification (Primary Degree: Level 8 - National Qualifications Authority of Ireland).

An interview will be required in all cases, as well as an audition where necessary. Candidates may be required to submit additional audio visual and/or written material.

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of either prior successful completion of a degree qualification taught through the medium of English or meet one of the criteria below (no longer than two years prior to application):

Acceptable English Language qualifications include the following:

•Matriculation examinations from European countries where English is presented as a subject and an acceptable level is achieved

•Irish Leaving Certificate English –Ordinary Level Grade D or above

•TOEFL – 580 (paper based) or 90 (internet based)

•IELTS – Minimum score of 6.5 with no less than 6 in any one component.

•English Test for English and Academic Purposes (ETAPP) – Grade C1

•GCE 'O' level English Language/GCSE English Language – Grade C or above

•Cambridge Assessment English - Certificate of Proficiency in English - Grade C / Certificate in Advanced English Grade B

•GCE Examination Boards – Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations – Grade C / Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate – School Certificate Pass 1-6 / University of London Entrance and School Examinations Council – School Certificate Pass 1-6

Results in examinations other than those listed above may also be accepted as meeting our English language requirements. Contact the International Education Division for advice

Subjects taught

Autumn Semester
• Ritual Chant and Song Practicum 1
• Materials, Methods and Context for Western Chant 1
• Introduction to Fieldwork techniques
• Introduction to Ritual Studies

Options: students can choose two options from the list below

• Independent Study 1
• Colloquium 1
• Academic Literacies for International Postgraduate Students 1
• Professional Development for the Performing Arts
• Media Technologies for Performing Arts and Arts Research
• Introduction to Somatics 1
• Beginners' Ecclesiastical Latin for the Study of Plainchant

Spring Semester
• Ritual Chant and Song Practicum 2
• Materials, Methods and Context for Western Chant 2
• Advanced Ritual Studies

Options: students can choose two options from the list below

• Introduction to Somatics 2
• Critical Contexts for Arts Management and Cultural Policy
• Interdisciplinary Practice
• Independent Study 2
• Colloquium 2
• Academic Literacies for International Postgraduate Students 2

Summer Semester
• Final Presentation


1 year full time.

Enrolment dates

Start Date: 09/Sep/2019

Post Course Info

The prime focus of the course is the development of performers so many past students have gone on to develop careers as traditional musicians. However, students have gone on to use skills acquired through this MA in a number of other fields including education (at primary, post-primary, secondary and tertiary levels), technology, arts management, etc.

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  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

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