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Clara Grunefeld
An Píobaire Vol. 16 No. 3 now available

We are delighted that the new issue of our Newsletter An Píobaire is available now.

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, this issue of An Píobaire was published electronically on July 22nd. All members received their copy via email. If you didn’t get yours, please contact

Clara Grunefeld
NPU Statement on RTÉ Prime Time Investigates

Na Píobairí Uilleann (NPU) strongly condemns the reported sexual abuse and discrimination in the recent RTÉ Prime Time Investigates programme. We praise the courage of those who came forward and spoke out, and we support their actions in doing so. 

NPU is an inclusive organisation and we aim to provide a safe environment for all to enjoy and participate in the Irish Traditional Arts with zero tolerance towards abuse of any kind.  

NPU implements an artistic policy along with a child protection policy. We actively promote fairness, transparency and diversity in our engagement with performers of all ages and backgrounds.


Ráiteas ó NPU maidir le RTÉ Prime Time Investigates

Cáineann Na Píobairí Uilleann (NPU) go láidir an drochúsáid ghnéasach agus an leithcheal ar bhonn gnéis a tuairiscíodh le déanaí ar chlár RTÉ Prime Time Investigates. Molaimid iad siúd a tháinig chun tosaigh le labhairt amach faoi seo agus an misneach a bhí acu sin a dhéanamh agus tugaimid lán-tacaíocht dóibh.

Is eagraíocht ionchuimsitheach í NPU agus tá sé mar aidhm againn timpeallacht shábháilte a chur ar fáil do chách inar féidir le gach duine páirt a ghlacadh agus taitneamh a bhaint as na hEalaíona Dúchasacha. Ní ghlacaimid ar aon bhealach le drochúsáid d’aon tsaghas.

Cuireann NPU beartas ealaíne agus beartas um chosaint leanaí i bhfeidhm. Cuirimid cothrom na féinne chun cinn go gníomhach. Cuirimid trédhearcacht agus ilchineálacht chun cinn chomh maith agus muid ag déileáil le taibheoirí de gach aois-ghrúpa agus de gach cúlra.

Clara Grunefeld
Féile Phíobaireachta 2020 – Festival of Uilleann Piping in August

Féile Phíobaireachta – 3 to 21 August 2020

Na Píobairí Uilleann is delighted to announce that the first Féile Phíobaireachta will take place this August. We will host a variety of online classes, workshops, performances and demonstrations through Zoom and our Facebook page.

The fee for online classes and workshops is €8 for members and €15 for non-members per class. There is no limit on the number of classes each student can attend, however tickets are strictly limited and will be on sale from Wednesday, 22nd July 10am IST, on our online shop on a first come, first served basis. 


delivered via Zoom

*sold out* Tuesday, 4 August – 3pm IST

“Listening and Appreciation” with Harry Bradley

*sold out* Wednesday, 5 August – 3pm IST

“Advanced Regulator Playing” with Seán McKeon

Friday, 7 August – 3pm IST

“Reed Making Workshop” with Mick O’Brien

Tuesday, 11 August – 3pm IST

“Pipes Maintenance” with Joe Walsh

*sold out* Wednesday, 12 August – 3pm IST

“Reaching the Regulators” with Joseph Byrne

*sold out* Tuesday, 18 August – 3pm IST 

“Airs” with Peter Browne

*sold out* Wednesday, 19 August – 3pm IST

“Rhythms & Regs” with Gay McKeon

Online Classes

delivered via Zoom

*sold out* Monday, 3 August – 10am IST

Tiarnán Ó Duinnchinn – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 4+yr. playing
Thursday, 6 August – 3pm IST

Emer Mayock – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 1-2yr. playing
Monday, 10 August – 10am IST

Peadar Giles – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 6+mo. playing
*sold out* Thursday, 13 August – 3pm IST

Joey Abarta – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 5+yr. playing
*sold out* Monday, 17 August – 10am IST

Cormac Cannon – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 3yr. playing
Thursday, 20 August – 3pm IST

Kieran O’Hare – Masterclass

  • Duration: 1.5hrs
  • Experience Required: 2+yr. playing

Cancellations made up to 3 days before the class are eligible for a full refund. 

Clara Grunefeld
New Video: Instrument Making in Conjunction with BCFE
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We are delighted to present a new video on Pipecraft, marking the addition of new choices to BCFE’s instrument-making strand.

From September 2020, the following instruments will be offered: uilleann pipes, flute, harp, whistle, and mandolin/mandola. 

This video provides an insight into the course run by Na Píobairí Uilleann in conjunction with Ballyfermot College of Further Education.

The video features both past students and NPU’s CEO, Gay McKeon, speaking about their experience of the course and Na Píobairí Uilleann’s instrument making facility PipeCraft.

Watch the video here on our YouTube Channel.

Clara Grunefeld
“Piping from the Parlour” continues on a weekly basis

We are delighted to announce that “Piping from the Parlour” will continue on our Facebook page on a weekly basis.
The artists perform from their own homes and these are brought to you via our Facebook page at 8pm (IST) every Tuesday.
The series started on Tuesday 21st April and was broadcast every other day.
The first part of the series is now available for viewing on our online Archive here.
Here is the schedule of previous performances (all times listed are IST):
  • 21/04/2020 8pm – Tommy Keane
  • 23/04/2020 8pm – Colm Broderick
  • 25/04/2020 8pm – Louise Mulcahy
  • 27/04/2020 8pm – Leonard Barry
  • 29/04/2020 8pm – Rita Farrell
  • 01/05/2020 8pm – Seán Gavin
  • 03/05/2020 8pm – Tom Creegan
  • 05/05/2020 8pm – Michael ‘Blackie’ O’Connell
  • 07/05/2020 8pm – Amy Campbell
  • 11/05/2020 8pm – Jimmy O’Brien Moran
  • 13/05/2020 8pm – Ronan Browne
  • 15/05/2020 8pm – Peter Laban
  • 17/05/2020 8pm – Sheila Friel
  • 19/05/2020 8pm – Gregorio Bellodi
  • 21/05/2020 8pm – Pádraic Keane
  • 23/05/2020 8pm – Deb Quigley
  • 25/05/2020 8pm – Colleen Shanks
  • 27/05/2020 8pm –  Pamela Schweblin
  • 29/05/2020 8pm – Joseph Byrne
  • 31/05/2020 8pm – Seán McKiernan
  • 02/06/2020 8pm – Cillian Vallely
  • 06/06/2020 8pm – Tom Delany
  • 08/06/2020 8pm – Michael Stribling
  • 10/06/2020 8pm – Martin Nolan
  • 12/06/2020 8pm – Barry Kerr
  • 14/06/2020 8pm – Kara Doyle
  • 16/06/2020 8pm – Preston Wilde
  • 18/06/2020 8pm – Heather Clarke
  • 20/06/2020 8pm – Lachlan McKibbin
  • 22/06/2020 8pm – Marion McCarthy
  • 24/06/2020 8pm – Maeve O’Donnell
  • 26/06/2020 8pm – Donnchadh Gough
  • 30/06/2020 8pm – Jason Rouse
  • 02/07/2020 8pm – Leo Rickard
  • 04/07/2020 8pm – Mark Redmond
You can also watch all past episodes on Facebook, you don’t have to be signed up to see them!
Our thanks goes to The Arts Council/An Comhairle Ealaíon for making this possible.
Clara Grunefeld
Wheels of the World Fundraiser

Wheels of the World Fundraising Challenge Takes Place over July and August 2020


Throughout the months of July and August, our volunteers will help us reach our goal to raise €20,000 for the International Uilleann Piping Visitor Centre and Theatre (more details below on this exciting project!).

Each July, Na Píobairí Uilleann volunteers come together for the annual Cycle to Miltown, a 260km journey from Dublin to Miltown Malbay, Co.Clare. Last year we celebrated the 10th annual cycle and raised over €8,000 to purchase practise sets for our Pipes on Loan instrument bank, enabling new students to begin playing. In the 10 years since its beginning, it has raised over €100,000 and is a vital source of funding for the organisation in running tuition services, events, Try the Pipes opportunities and supporting pipemakers. 

How do I get involved?

This year, the occasion will be marked a little differently. We are asking participants to step up to the challenge at home!
Support our cyclists, walkers, runners in their individual challenges to raise funds for Na Píobairí Uilleann.

Thank you for your support in helping us reach our target together!

Please spread the word and get in touch if you would like to be involved. You can sign up here on our iDonate page and register as a fundraiser. Alternatively, you can contact us directly.

Our Vision 

We are setting a target to collectively raise €20,000 over the next two months.

The funds raised will take Na Píobairí Uilleann one step closer to achieving the goal to create a world-class International Uilleann Piping Visitor Centre and Theatre next door to headquarters at 16 Henrietta Street, Dublin.

With recent changes in the social landscape, many of us have come to realise the importance of partaking in cultural activities in our lives. Many of us miss going to our weekly music class or attending our favourite recitals or concerts. We are hopeful that these activities will resume in the near future and are excited at the current opportunities to connect with our members all over the world by providing online tuition and performances.

Meanwhile, the staff, members, volunteers and Board of Na Píobairí Uilleann are committed to fostering the growing interest in uilleann piping and are focusing all of our efforts on fundraising for No.16 Henrietta Street. At present, full planning approval is in place and detailed layouts are being finalised for the facilities which include a theatre, pipemaking/training workshop, museum and performance spaces.

The International Uilleann Piping Centre will create a hub for cultural tourism and revitalize Dublin’s North Georgian Quarter in accordance the heritage plan for the city and its community. It will provide additional and much-needed space to host additional classes and workshops (whether that is online or face-to-face!). The plans also include a 120-seat theatre with acoustically designed performance space. It will bring pipe-making right into the heart of the city and be home to a new museum showcasing our collection of classic instruments.Your support will have a part in shaping current and future generations of uilleann piping, a shared heritage and an exciting community project that will last for years to come. 

We would like to thank all of our volunteers and supporters over the years for their donations and time. 

Read more about this campaign here.

To contact us about this fundraiser: / 01 873 0093

Clara Grunefeld
Traditional Arts Bursary Award 2020 by the Arts Council

Applications are now open for the Traditional Arts Bursary Award 2020 by The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon.

Deadline is Thursday, 30th July at 5.30pm. 

More info here.

Clara Grunefeld
Online Workshops and Master Classes for Pipers in collaboration with Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy

Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy and Na Píobairí Uilleann are pleased to offer a series of online workshops and masterclasses for pipers commencing on Monday 6th July.

All piping events in this series are available to participants at no cost but places must be pre-booked and a strictly limited number of places for each session are available. Please note that due to limited spaces available, each student may only register for one class and one workshop during the week.

This series of masterclasses provides an opportunity for students to listen to some leading uilleann pipers perform a selection of their favourite pieces for the instrument. Additionally, tutors will demonstrate their approach to playing the pipes. It is hoped that students find this insight useful in the development of their own piping. There will be an opportunity for students to ask questions at the end of each session.

Each online event will last for approximately 90 minutes and take place via online video calling platforms. Please note that classes may be recorded for internal educational purposes.

As all piping masterclasses and workshops are taking place online, we regret that we cannot stream by novice, intermediate, and advanced levels. Consequently, classes will be mixed ability, but it is hoped that all participants will benefit from the experience.

For further information or to book a place at any of the piping events, please contact Na Píobairí Uilleann through email or call +353 1 8730093 or +353 87 3670978. Please note: students are permitted to attend one masterclass and/or workshop subject to availability.

Monday 6th July

10am – Masterclass w/ Mikie Smyth (full)

3pm – Airs w/ Caoimhín Ó Fearghail (full)

Tuesday 7th July

10am – Pipes Maintenance w/ Mick O’Brien (full)

3pm – Masterclass w/ Mickey Dunne (full)

Wednesday 8th July

10am – Masterclass w/ Louise Mulcahy (full)

3pm – Regulators w/ Gay McKeon (full)

Thursday 9th July

10am – Reedmaking Demonstration w/ Jim Wenham  

3pm – Masterclass w/ Seán McKeon (full)

Friday 10th July

10am – Masterclass w/ Brian McNamara (full)

3pm – Tuning a Full Set of Pipes w/ Benedict Koehler (full)

All times Irish Standard Time (GMT+1)

Classes will be held on Zoom and might be recorded for internal educational purposes.

Supported by The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon.
Clara Grunefeld
COVID-19 Update (8/6/2020)

In line with phase 2 of re-opening, starting on the 8th of June, our Headquarters in 15 Henrietta Street, Dublin will be partially manned each day by some staff members.  Administration services will gradually re-open while we implement the required health and safety procedures. During this time and until further notice, the building will remain closed to the public. Thank you for your support in this regard.

You can contact NPU by email at or by phone at +353 1 8730093 during working hours 9am to 5pm (IST) Monday to Friday and you can leave a voice message if you cannot get in touch with us immediately. If you wish to contact individual members of staff directly you can do so by email.

You can place orders in our online shop. We are striving to take up regular delivery from the 8th of June. If you have any questions in relation to your order, you can email If you wish to buy items from our in house shop in 15 Henrietta Street, please phone us in advance to pay and make an appointment for collection of goods.

We will continue to update our members via email, website, and on social media platforms.

Unfortunately, all NPU public events previously planned to be held in June and July 2020 have been postponed until further notice.

In the meantime, please feel free to visit the online archive to view an extensive library of video, audio and photographic materials for your entertainment and to aid learning and research. You can also stay tuned with our regular social media updates.

We wish you and your families the very best and hope that you continue to stay well during these challenging times.



Clara Grunefeld
Unique Irish instrument making course expanded to include the harp

Press release on behalf of Na Píobairí Uilleann *Irish Version Below*

June 1, 2020

Photography: Fennell 

NA PÍOBAIRÍ UILLEANN (NPU) is delighted to announce that starting September 2020 and in partnership with Ballyfermot College of Further Education (BCFE) additional instruments are to be added to the instrument making strand of the Ceoltóir programme.

The Irish harp, following the uilleann pipes, was inscribed on the UNESCO list of Intangible Cultural Heritage recognition last December and the making of this iconic instrument will now be taught at NPU’s PipeCraft training facility in Clonshaugh as part of  BCFE’s National Higher Diploma in Traditional Music Performance Programme (Ceoltóir).

Other instruments included in the expansion of the teaching programme are the mandolin/mandola along with the existing courses in uilleann pipes, flute and whistle making.

The Level 6 programme in Musical Instrument Making and Performance is a two year course and will commence at the start of the academic year in September in accordance with all Covid-19 safety protocols.

Speaking about the announcement of this expansion, NPU Chief Executive Gay McKeon said: “Expanding the cohort of skilled instrument makers in Ireland is a vital part of the preservation and promotion of traditional music and we’re delighted that Na Píobairí Uilleann’s facility in north Dublin is able to play a pivotal role in that objective.

“In partnership with Ballyfermot College of Further Education, we have framed these new additional courses in harp, mandolin and mandola making in an accredited module which will help provide a career pathway for participants who have ambition to develop the specialised craft of instrument making.”

NPU’s PipeCraft  Training Centre, the first dedicated facility of its kind in Ireland equipped with the machinery, tools and materials required for transmitting the skills required for the craft of instrument making, was opened in 2011 with the support of the then Dept of Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht along with other Government agencies and continues to be assisted with an annual fundraising campaign.

Since then over 150 students have received specialised instruction in pipe-making on full time and modular part time courses with flute and whistle making added to the courses in 2018 when a partnership was formed with Ballyfermot College of Further Education.

The success of the NPU/BCFE instrument making courses will have the effect of delivering benefits in the areas of heritage, culture, art, enterprise and jobs.

The re-establishment of Ireland as the world centre for excellence in the manufacture of uilleann pipes, flutes, whistles, harps, mandolins and mandolas will result in the provision of employment in an export-led sector and an increase in cultural tourism.

Applications can be made through the college website, Ballyfermot College of Further Education PH: (01) 6269421,

Further Information 

Na Píobairí Uilleann, 15 Henrietta St., Dublin 1, Ireland

Tel: +353-1-8730093



About Na Píobairí Uilleann

Na Píobairí Uilleann (NPU), the Society of Uilleann Pipers, was founded in 1968 when there were fewer than 100 uilleann pipers remaining. Today NPU is a thriving arts organisation dedicated to Sharing the Sound of Ireland through Access, Education, Performance and Preservation.

Since unveiling its restored Georgian premises at 15 Henrietta Street, Dublin, in January 2007, NPU has been busy catering for the expanding demand for regular tuition, as well as releasing a number of significant publications and recordings. With demand for pipes considerably exceeding supply, a dedicated Training Centre – PipeCraft – was established in 2011 to deliver training in the very highly skilled craft of uilleann pipe making.

NPU is accredited to UNESCO as a competent NGO in the field of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH).

NPU lobbied the Irish Government to ratify the UNESCO Convention on Intangible Cultural Heritage which resulted in the inclusion of Uilleann Piping on the UNESCO representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in December 2017.

Na Píobairí Uilleann’s primary funding agencies include the Department of Culture, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht, The Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon and Dublin City Council.

Na Píobairí Uilleann, 15 Henrietta Street, Dublin 1, Ireland

W: P: 00353(0)1 8730093 



An chláirseach anois mar chuid de chúrsa sainiúil i ndéantús uirlisí ceoil 

Preas-ráiteas ar son Na Píobairí Uilleann

1 Meitheamh, 2020

Grianghrafanna á ndáileadh ag Fennell

Tá áthas ar NA PÍOBAIRÍ UILLEANN (NPU) a fhógairt go bhfuil tuilleadh uirlisí ceoil le cur leis an sruth i ndéantús uirlisí ceoil atá mar chuid den chlár Ceoltóir. Tá seo le tosú i Meán Fómhair 2020 i gcomhpháirtíocht le Coláiste Breisoideachais Bhaile Formaid (BCFE).

I mí na Nollag seo caite chuir Eagraíocht Oideachais, Eolaíochta agus Chultúir na Náisiún Aontaithe (UNESCO) an Chláirseach Éireannach lena Liosta Ionadaíoch d’Oidhreacht Chultúir Dholáimhsithe an Chine Daonna. Múinfear déantús na huirlise  íocónaí seo anois ag PipeCraft, ionad oiliúna NPU i gCluain Seach, mar chuid den Ard-Dioplóma Náisiúnta i dTaibhiú an Cheoil Traidisiúnta le BCFE.

Tá na huirlisí ceoil an maindilín agus an mandóla curtha leis an gclár oiliúna freisin agus leanfar ar aghaidh leis na cúrsaí don phíb uilleann, don fhliúit agus don fheadóg atá ann cheana féin. 

Is cúrsa dhá bhliain ar Leibhéal 6 é agus tosóidh sé ag tús na bliana acadúla i Meán Fómhair 2020 faoi réir treoracha sábháilteachta Covid 19.

Agus é ag caint ar fhorbairt an chúrsa dúirt Gay McKeon Príomhfheidhmeannach NPU: “Is cuid ríthábhachtach é de chosaint agus de chur chun cinn an cheoil traidisiúnta é an méid déantúsóirí oilte d’uirlisí ceoil a mhéadú agus tá áthas orainn gur féidir leis an áis atá ag NPU i mBaile Átha Cliath Thuaidh ról lárnach a imirt sa gcuspóir seo. 

Chuir muid na cúrsaí nua seo don chláirseach, don mhaindilín, agus don mhandóla le chéile i gcomhpháirtíocht le Coláiste Breisoideachais Bhaile Formaid (BCFE) mar mhodúl creidiúnaithe, rud a chabhróidh leis na rannpháirtithe a slí a dhéanamh i dtreo gairm bheatha a bhaint amach ins an saincheird a bhaineann le déantús uirlisí ceoil.”

Le tacaíocht ón Roinn Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta agus ó áisínteachtaí eile stáit osclaíodh PipeCraft, Ionad Oiliúna NPU, in 2011. Ba í an chéad áis dá sórt in Éirinn í leis an trealamh cuí, na huirlisí agus na hábhair atá ag teastáil chun na scileanna i ndéantús uirlisí ceoil a sheachadadh. Bíonn feachtas tiomsaithe airgid ann gach bliain le tacú léi.

Ó shin i leith tá os cionn 150 scoláire tar éis sainoiliúint a fháil i ndéantús píbe ar chúrsaí lánaimseartha agus ar mhodúil pháirtaimseartha. Cuireadh an fhliúit agus an fheadóg leis na cúrsaí in 2018 am a ndeachaigh NPU i gcomhpáirtíocht le Coláiste Breisoideachais Bhaile Formaid (BCFE). 

Rachaidh cúrsaí NPU/BCFE i ndéantús uirlisí ceoil chun tairbhe na n-earnálacha oidhreachta, cultúir, ealaíon, fiontraíochta agus fostaíochta.

Agus Éire arís ina hionad barr feabhais i ndéantúsaíocht den phíb uilleann, den fhliúit, den fheadóg, den chláirseach, den mhaindilín agus den mhandóla cuirfidh sin le fostaíocht san earnáil easpórtála agus i dturasóireacht cultúrtha.

Is féidir iarratas a chur isteach ar shuíomh idirlín an choláiste Ballyfermot College of Further Education Teileafón: (01) 6269421,

Tuilleadh Eolais 

Na Píobairí Uilleann, 15 Sráid Henrietta, Baile Átha Cliath 1, Éire

Teil: +353-1-8730093


Suíomh idirlín:

Eolas faoi Na Píobairí Uilleann

Bunaíodh Na Píobairí Uilleann (NPU) in 1968 ag an am a cheaptar nach raibh ach thar ar 100 píobaire uilleann fágtha sa tír. Ach is eagraíocht atá faoi bhláth inniu í agus é mar aidhm aici Fuaim na hÉireann a Roinnt trí Rochtain, trí Oideachas, trí Thaibhiú agus trí Chaomhnú.

Ón am ar oscail NPU a áitreabh i dteach Seoirseach athchóirithe i 15 Sráid Henrietta, Baile Átha Cliath in 2007 tá sé ag freastal ar an éileamh atá ag fás gan stad ar oiliúint rialta ar an uirlis. Tá sé ag foilsiú agus ag eisiúint taifeadtaí tábhachtacha ó shin i leith freisin.   Toisc go bhfuil éileamh thar na bearta ar an uirlis í fhéin, bhunaigh NPU a sainionad oiliúna PipeCraft in 2011 chun oiliúint a chur ar fáil ins an saincheird ardoilte de dhéantús píbe.

Tá NPU creidiúnaithe le hEagraíocht Oideachais, Eolaíochta agus Chultúir na Náisiún Aontaithe (UNESCO) mar eagraíocht neamhrialtasach inniúil (NGO) in san earnáil a bhaineann le hOidhreacht Chultúir Dholáimhsithe (ICH).

Chuaigh NPU i mbun stocaireachta le Rialtas na hÉireann chun go ndaingneodh sé Coinbhinsiún UNESCO maidir le hOidhreacht Chultúir Dholáimhsithe. De thoradh ar sin chuir UNESCO Píobaireacht Uilleann ar a Liosta Ionadaíoch d’Oidhreacht Chultúir Dholáimhsithe an Chine Daonna i Nollaig 2017.

Is iad príomh-mhaoinitheoirí NPU ná An Roinn Cultúir, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta, An Chomhairle Ealaíon agus Comhairle Cathrach Bhaile Átha Cliath.

Na Píobairí Uilleann, 15 Sráid Henrietta, Baile Átha Cliath 1, Éire

Suíomh Idirlín: Rphost: Teileafón: 00353(0)1 8730093