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Contact Me

Experience and philosophy

  • I learned to play from observing the best players around! I collected books and videos and evolved my own style. As a rhythm guitar player, I have always been very conscientious about following the lead singers/players, a skill that is essential with all accompaniment.
  • Having attended sessions in Ireland, Scotland and the US, I learned the proper place for the bodhrán player in every circumstance: you are there to enhance the music, not overpower, push the speed nor interfere.
  • You need to understand and interpret time signatures, the architecture of the music (AA/BB/CC or ABC/ABC etc.) to end on time, watch lead players for signals to change or stop, play standing up or sitting down, and so much more!
  • AND you must do so without injuring yourself
  • I currently play a wonderful bodhrán made by the late master, Charlie Byrne


  • Perform professionally with internationally-touring band IONA since 1986
  • Have taught bodhrán privately since 1995
  • Leader of workshops offered through the Virginia Commission for the Arts Touring Program since 1996
  • Leader of workshops at festivals nationwide


Copyright © 2012 Barbara Ryan

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