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Music Instruction


Norah is a skilled music educator with a passion for sharing her music with young and old, and beginners to advanced musicians. She loves teaching workshops, group classes and private lessons, so don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Norah has a MA in Irish Traditional Music from the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at the University of Limerick and BMus from McGill University in Music Education and Early Music Performance and Literature. Norah taught voice, flute and instrumental ensemble, and the ear, notation and theory programme at the University of Limerick.  She was a voice instructor at Janet Harbison’s Irish Harp Centre, and currently directs the youth ensemble program and music for children program at Center for Irish Music. Norah designed her own music for children programmes at O’Shea Irish Dance (Minnesota), Prussin Music (Vancouver) and the Amati String Studio (Vancouver). Norah has also led multiple recorder workshops through Early Music Vancouver and the BC Recorder Society.

CIM-VertCurrently, Norah is the Executive Director of an Irish music school called Center for Irish Music in Saint Paul, Minnesota.  The CIM is dedicated to handing down traditional Irish music to the next generation of musicians in the community. Through private lessons, group classes, sessions and events, the school aims to inspire and support the traditional Irish music community in the Twin Cities, throughout the Midwest, and Canada.  There are some wonderful free resources on the Center for Irish Music‘s webpage.



Norah offers lessons and workshops in the following areas:

  • voice and song; celtic harmony singing, unaccompanied traditional songs, children’s traditional songs
  • wooden flute
  • tin whistle
  • recorder
  • ear training, theory, musicianship
  • music for children – general
  • music for children – specialty class based on traditional Irish children’s songs

Quotes from parents and students:

“I want to say thank you for bringing Irish music into our home. I was not fortunate to grow up with this gift, and with Moira playing fiddle and tin whistle…and now with Fiona and Maeve singing, it brings tears to my eyes knowing this is something they’ll keep with them forever. And Norah, just so you get feedback…Maeve may be quiet as can be during class, but she is singing up a storm at home about grasshoppers and false knights!” – Emily Flagstad, parent of 3 students at the Center for Irish Music, Saint Paul, MN

“Dear Miss Norah – thank you for teaching me. The teacher I have now is almost as best as you. I watched your video on YouTube. It was good!” – Cassidy, 4 years old

“Not only is the Singing Sweeties cd a nice way for Charlie and I to learn new songs, but George really enjoys listening to the whole CD. George’s Grandma and Grandpa heard the entire cd as well – and my Dad became teary-eyed just listening to it!” – Jane, mother of 3 year old George

“You are a fantastic musician! That was awesome! You were also a great recorder/piano teacher!” – Recorder student Edie, 9 years old, after seeing Norah & Brian play a show at St. James Community Hall in Vancouver

Voice and song

Norah takes both a technical and artistic approach to singing instruction encouraging her students to find their own voice through solid technique and exploring new repertoire.

Lessons include vocal warmups, breathing exercises, and instruction/coaching on ornamentation, phrasing and delivery through learning new songs.

Wooden flute

Norah’s flute and whistle lessons focus on breathing, fingerwork and personal style through teaching Irish tunes that sit well on the the flute.


Norah’s whistle lessons focus on breathing, fingerwork and personal style through teaching Irish tunes that sit well on the the whistle.


Beginner to advanced / Norah’s instruction on how to play recorder includes breath support, tone production, posture and finger technique. Norah’s experience is with Renaissance, Baroque and contemporary recorder repertoire. She can help prepare students for Royal Conservatory of Toronto exams or auditions into university or college.