November Update

Many new developments took place during October and November. After attending a workshop on Protégé (a free ontology authoring software) and OWL (Web Ontology Language) in October, Lynnsey has begun work on the higher-level LITMUS ontology.

A higher level ontology is one that tries to cover the over-arching aspects of a knowledge domain, such as Irish traditional music and dance. Without getting into too many levels of granularity, such as listing every dance tune in existence (good luck if you’d like a go at that!), a higher-level ontology tries to account for situational and contextual factors.

We developed and released a video about LITMUS, which has gotten a wonderful response. Many thanks to ITMA staff for helping with the video: Brian Doyle for recording and mastering Lynnsey’s narration and fiddle music, and Treasa Harkin for help with the rights and permissions for the images used. And, special thanks to photographers Danny Diamond and Tony Kearns, as well as the late Tom Munnelly, for the use of their brilliant images of musicians and dancers.

On the 6th of November, Lynnsey had the opportunity to present her paper “Documenting Irish Traditional Music and Dance” at the Documenting Performance symposium, held by City, University of London. In addition to discussing the LITMUS project, Lynnsey played a slow air version and one of the hornpipe versions of “The Blackbird” on the fiddle, and danced the Blackbird set dance.

In demonstrating these versions, she wanted to convey the complex relationships between the melodies (song air and dance tunes) along with the different interpretations of The Blackbird set dance choreography. The version Lynnsey danced was learned from old-style stepdancers Céline and Michael Tubridy (ITMA video found here).

Lynnsey presented an overview of the LITMUS project to students from the National University of Ireland at Galway (NUIG) Irish Studies MA programme visiting ITMA on 10th of November. In addition, she presented a paper at the British and Irish Sound Archives (BISA) conference held in Edinburgh at the National Library of Scotland on 17-18 of November.