Our Musician Educators

Our Tutors

Adam Downey

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Adam is a professional drummer from Gort, Co.Galway. He studied drums at Rhythm Drum School and graduated from the University of Limerick with a Masters Degree in Community Music. He also holds a Masters Degree in Community Development from NUIG.


Adam has toured extensively worldwide and recorded with many different artists. He regularly performs with artists such as Jamie Harrison, Tracy Bruen and Harry Bird and the Rubber Wellies. In between gigging and recording he works with Music Generation Galway as a drum tutor and also delivers workshops in a variety of topics including songwriting, music recording and movie making. Adam is endorsed by Dream Cymbals.

Aidan Curran

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Aidan Curran has been working with Music Generation since January 2019. Qualified in Music Performance, Music Theory, Sound Engineering & Ethnomusicology; Aidan specialises in guitar, bass & ukulele. As tutor with our Bailigi and RockPopHipHop groups; his role involves working with young musicians in schools and youth centres throughout Galway City and County.


As a veteran of the live music scene for almost 20 years, Aidan has a wealth of experience in live performance & recording. Having performed all over the world; he is currently working with several top live acts throughout Ireland.


Aidan is Director of Music at Galway City Music Partnership through which he runs School of Rock; Galway’s acclaimed music performance-based summer camp. This year’s camp will commence on 29th June 2020.


Aidan also provides workshops in various music disciplines at PLC / FETAC level 5-6 for Galway Community College and other educational institutes.

Ciara O’Connor

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Ciara grew up in a very musical environment, being exposed to many different kinds of music within her family. She has played the violin and piano from a young age and took up cello at the age of 13. She chose the cello as her main instrument for her music degree in the CIT Cork School of Music, where she graduated with first-class honours in 2014.


Ciara has been based in Galway since graduating and has been teaching music extensively throughout Galway. She has been involved with Music Generation in programmes both in Galway City and Galway County since 2019. These involve instrumental string programmes as well as musicianship- based classes in the classroom. As a performer, Ciara has played in both classical and traditional settings and has also done some studio session work.

Dave Curtis

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Dave Curtis hails from Southern California. He has had a 30 year career recording, playing and teaching on electric bass and keyboard. Dave has performed and recorded with Mike Garson (pianist for Nine Inch Nails and David Bowie), jazz guitarists Dean Brown and Wayne Johnson, Bobby Bare, Leroy Parnell, Kellie King, Art and Ivan Neville, Peter Sprague, Branford Marsalis, Kenny Kirkland and Steven Seagal.


Dave co-produced songwriter Ultan Conlon's The Last Days Of The Night Owl and toured, recorded and wrote with AJ Croce for 20 years. He currently lives outside Galway City.

David McGloughlin

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Dave McGloughlin is former member of Le Galaxie - a live electronic dance-music act that have firmly established themselves as festival favourites since 2009. They were signed to Universal Music and Reservoir worldwide publishing. Their Top-10 album "Le Club" was nominated for the prestigious Choice Music Prize, as was their song "Love System".


They toured extensively and played festivals throughout Ireland, Europe, America and beyond. Dave left Le Galaxie in July 2019, and is currently working on solo material. Prior to working with Music Generation, Dave was the project manager for Ballyfermot's Cruinniú Na nÓg music project "Unsung Youth".

Fionnuala Hannigan Dunkley

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Fionnuala is a multi-instrumentalist, music tutor and choral director from Renvyle in Connemara. Since graduating with first class honours degrees from Cork School of Music in 2011 (Bmus) and NUIG in 2015 (MA) she has worked with various Galway based bands playing concertina, flute, guitar, ukulele and as a vocalist. Leading and conducting choirs around Galway including Omna Singers of Portumna, Cor le Cheile and Cor le kids in Athenry allow her to share her passion for singing and community music. 

More recently Fionnuala has been developing vocal, song writing and ukulele programmes for secondary schools with Music Generation Galway City, and joining Rock/Pop/Hip-Hop programmes with Music Generation Galway County. She’s very keen to offer her musical knowledge and experience across a variety of musical genres; aspiring to encourage and motivate children and young people to be part of the exciting and creative process of music making. 


Ingrid Nicola

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Born in Romania, Ingrid Nicola is the violinist/founding member of ConTempo quartet, a celebrated string quartet that has been Galway's Ensemble in Residence since 2003. Ingrid graduated from The University of Music in Bucharest.

In Ireland, she is now a chamber music visiting teacher at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, and has given lectures/workshops in London, Tokyo, Dublin Institute of Technology and the CIT Cork School of Music. In 2016, Ingrid was awarded a honorary Degree of Doctor of Music by NUIG). She has also received an MA in Music form the Cork School of Music (2005) and a Diploma in Child Psychology in 2015. Since September 2018 Ingrid is a conductor and teacher of Galway Youth Orchestra.

Joanne Cater

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Joanne Cater graduated with honours from the Colchester Institute of Music in 1996 where she studied flute under the direction of Duke Dobing. She worked in Warwickshire from 1996 to 2000 as a peripatetic woodwind teacher. She was flautist in the North Warwickshire Concert Orchestra and conductor/director of the Warwickshire County Flute Choir.

Living in Galway since 2000, Joanne teaches flute, woodwinds and music theory in GRETB School of Music. A multi-instrumentalist with a diverse repertoire, she enjoys playing an assortment of woodwinds in musical shows in the region as well as baritone saxophone with the Black Magic Big Band. Joanne joined Galway Youth Orchestra as conductor in 2004 and is well known for her dedicated work with young musicians.

Ronan O’Malley

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Ronan O'Malley. Originally from Westport, he moved to Galway and began an apprenticeship as a guitarist in 2007 which led to his current projects - No Stairway, a Led Zeppelin tribute act and 4Mile Circus, a dancey disco funtime band that has reinvented itself as an alternative wedding band.


In 2012 he joined the St. Patrick's Brass Band, where he primarily learned to play tuba and also, for the first time, to read music. This has been significant in his progression both as a musician and as a tutor. Ronan joined Music Generation as a tutor in 2019, of which he says “this enables me to bring music to many young people, an opportunity I didn't have growing up”

Shane O’Malley

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I came to music relatively late in life, picking up bass guitar at 14/15 because my brother's band needed one! Soon realising the craic to be had, I taught myself as much as possible.

Having moved to Galway to study physics, it wasn't until I had finished that I returned to music, and began gigging around the city.

I was privileged to take part in the Access Music Project, where I first got access to formal music education, and I also joined St. Patrick's Brass Band where I learned to play brass instruments. I then moved to Cork to study music in UCC.

Upon returning to Galway, I committed to music for a career and now I'm lucky to be part of the Music Generation team. Aside from playing music, I also teach swing dancing. Sometimes it's nice to enjoy the music rather than performing!

Terry Cooke

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A native and resident of Galway City, Ireland, at 7 years old began formal tuition on drums and percussion. Currently one of the most sought after and in-demand drummers and multi percussionists in the country from classical to, musical theatre pit musician, across all genres to tuition both privately and within various educational programs in schools and is delighted to be working with Music Generation Galway City and County. Terry is a vastly experienced performer and has been lucky enough to study with some exceptionally gifted musicians within their fields and genres in that time.

A comfortable and poised player a proficient sight reader playing a variety of live gigs, concert, musical theatre, classical and recording situations. He has played at home in Ireland and abroad on numerous recordings, musicals, tours, radio and television across all genres of music over this time well known for his solid groove and feel within any style. Currently playing with a wide variety of Artists in both recording and live settings.

Terry is endorsed by Bosphorus Cymbals Istanbul Turkey, www.bosphoruscymbals.com and London Drumstick Company, www.londondrumsticks.co.uk

Tracy Friel

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Tracy Friel has worked in the Youth and Community Sector since 2003. Working with people from all backgrounds, ages and abilities, Tracy has years of experience in creating supportive, safe and fun environments in which participants can develop and learn and is highly attuned and sensitive to the needs of the individual within a group setting.


A graduate of the Access Music Project, Galway, Tracy began teaching music in 2011. She teaches Guitar, Ukulele and pre-instrumental music classes.


Tracy runs Sounds Music Camps (Galway) for children during school holidays.


Tracy has a strong belief in the transformative power of group music-making and that music can play a positive role in community development as well as enhancing the life of the individual musician.

Ultan Conlon

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Ultan Conlon is a Galway based singer-songwriter, guitarist and recording artist. Ultan has recorded four studio albums and scored a feature film and compiled it's soundtrack. His latest album, 'There's a Waltz' was recorded in Los Angeles and produced by Grammy Award Winner Sean Watkins (Nicklecreek).


His songs have been covered by John Martyn and Mary Coughlan to name but a few. He has appeared on RTE Television and his songs have been played across the National Airwaves on RTE Radio 1, Lyric FM and Today FM, also further afield on BBC Radio. He tours Europe and the USA regularly and continues to write, perform and record new material.


Ultan has received extensive training in the Suzuki pedagogical method and his work with Music Generation includes the teaching of guitar, songwriting/composition and guiding various pop/rock ensembles.