ITMA Announces the Awarding of Heritage Council Funding for 2023

ITMA is delighted to announce the awarding of Community Heritage Grant Scheme 2023 funding from The Heritage Council of Ireland for its project “Jigs and Audio Reels: Preserving Ireland's Cultural Heritage through Audio Digitisation.”

Reel to reel tape
Reel-to-reel tape from the ITMA Collection

In February 2023 ITMA applied to the Heritage Council of Ireland for funding under their Community Heritage Grant Scheme.

The aim of this scheme is to support capital projects that improve access and inclusion to heritage sites; that apply good heritage practice to the management of places, collections, or objects (including buildings). The scheme also supports the purchase of essential equipment. This scheme is intended to enable communities and heritage non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to continue their work in this area or to start new initiatives. - Heritage Council, 2023
Jigs and Audio Reels: Preserving Ireland's Cultural Heritage through Audio Digitisation
Project Aim

This project supports Ireland's intangible cultural heritage by obtaining a state-of-the-art reel-to-reel machine. This will allow the playback & digitisation of 1,000s of open reel recordings in ITMA

Long-term Impact

The Heritage Council has historically funded traditional preservation methods in ITMA. ITMA's strategic plan focuses on moving from physical to digital preservation. This project will provide an essential tool used to digitise ITMA's audio collections over the next 5 years. This process will allow ITMA to conduct important digital preservation steps. It will facilitate delivery of these culturally important materials for use locally, nationally & internationally. The outcomes of these activities will have a long term impact beyond 5 years & materials will be preserved in perpetuity for generations to come.

4-Track Studio Tape Recorder
Project Importance

One of ITMA’s main strategic priorities is to move the largest physical collection of Irish traditional music to the largest digital archive of its type to be found anywhere in the world. Digital transformation is costly & requires capital outlays and increased investment in hardware and new software. By supporting the purchase of this essential equipment the Heritage Council is assisting in the delivery of this strategic goal thereby improving access to these collection for users. Digital objects/exhibitions animate archive collections and make them easily discoverable and searchable by all.

Public Benefit

A growing local, national & global community of practitioners & those interested in Irish traditional music, song & dance will have free universal access to ITMA collections through the act of digitisation & online curation. The move from physical to digital democratises public access which in-turn reinvigorates the living tradition. ITMA has a proven track record in reaching new audiences through its online collections which is borne out in its year-on-year growth in online engagement. Digitised materials connect a larger artistic community with archival materials to inspire new art.

Heritage Week 2023

This year Heritage week will run from the 12 August – 20 August 2023. We look forward to working on this project in the coming weeks and months.

Heritage Council Logo

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