MA Ethnomusicology


Ethnomusicologists seek to understand the processes by which music is imagined, made, listened to, and discussed among human beings—everywhere and anywhere. Ethnomusicology follows music makers and listeners as they move throughout today’s interconnected world. It follows their musics as these circulate from person to person and through various media. It asks how musical experience becomes meaningful for individuals who come together in social groups of all types, ranging in scale from nations to families, and no matter whether they gather together in the intimacy of their homes or communicate through the far-flung networks of the world-wide-web. Ethnomusicology relates the particular musical sounds, behaviours, and ideas shared within these groups to their social and cultural contexts. In short, we aim to discover, document, and deepen appreciation of human musical life in all its richness and diversity.

Ethnomusicology at the Academy boasts the largest team of specialist faculty in Ireland.

Collectively we offer unrivalled depth of support for your intellectual and artistic growth as a student of this discipline.

The ethnomusicology program is delivered by:

Dr. Colin Quigley (Course Director )


Dr. Aileen Dillane (Acting Course Director 2014-2015)

Supported and augmented by faculty in cognate fields:

Limerick City and its surrounding areas in the West of Ireland provide many opportunities for the ethnomusicologist.  It is home to significant numbers of new immigrants whose musical traditions have become a feature of cultural life in the region. It is convenient to some of the heartlands of Irish traditional music. ‘Trad sessions’ are easy to find, numerous, frequent, and varied in character. Not surprisingly intercultural exchange and interaction in music is an increasing phenomenon.

The Irish World Academy offers a musically lively and intellectually stimulating environment in which to explore what Ethnomusicology has to offer to you.



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