Next generation of musicians to benefit as UCC receives €2m bequest

Singer-songwriter and UCC alumnus Jack O’Rourke in the Pauline Oliveros Sound Studio

Generations of musical talent from Seán Ó Riada to Ann Cleare have learned their trade at University College Cork – and now future cohorts of musicians will benefit as its Department of Music has been awarded the largest gift in its 113 year history.

The estate of Sidney V. Regan has bequeathed €2M to the Department of Music at UCC, and the announcement coincides with the unveiling of UCC’s new Sound Studio, the most significant investment in the Department of Music in recent years.

Mr Regan, a British master builder, moved to Cork in the 1960s where he and his wife Hilda became heavily involved in the music scene. Mr Regan was a member of the Commodore Male Voice Choir in Cobh, and founder of the Cobh Gramophone Society.

It was during this time that the Regans befriended former Professor of the Music Department at UCC, Aloys Fleischmann.

On his death in 2017, Sidney Regan bequeathed almost all of his €2m estate to his friend’s beloved Music Department. Mr Regan reserved around €200,000 of his estate for four charities – COPE Foundation, Marymount Hospice, the Cork Deaf Association, and The National Council for the Blind.

Prof. John O’Halloran, Interim President of UCC welcomed the significant donation to the Department of Music.

“University College Cork is hugely grateful to the estate of Sidney V. Regan for this exceptionally generous bequest to further support Music at UCC. His generous support will enable us to continue to build on the great tradition of Seán Ó Riada, Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin, Aloys Fleischmann, and more recently the likes of Ann Cleare, Karen Power, Karen Desmond, Julie Feeney, Rosaleen Molloy, Eibhlín Gleeson, Jack O’Rourke and so many others in inspiring the creation, performance and study of music for the next generations,” he said.

Dr. Jeffrey Weeter, Head of Music also thanked the Sidney V. Regan estate.

“Sidney Regan’s bequest is the single largest gift to the Music Department in its storied history, and this act of unmatched generosity will enrich the lives of current and future students immeasurably,” he said.

The bequest will enable the Department of Music to provide direct support to students in the form of Scholarships for undergraduates and postgraduates, improve physical resourcing for performers, composers and the academic study of music, and further enable the Department to bring in outside expertise, such as professional performers, to support its activities.

UCC will formally welcome the bequest at the official online unveiling of the Department of Music’s new Sound Studio at 4pm next Tuesday, January 19.

Consisting of a fully-equipped Live Room, Vocal Booth and Control Room, the Pauline Oliveros Sound Studio has been named in celebration of the renowned American composer who passed away in 2016. Oliveros had a close working relationship with members of Music Department staff, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by UCC in 2014; and was a guest of honour at the 2008 Quiet Music Festival, held in the Glucksman Gallery, where she performed and directed the first Deep Listening Workshop to be held in Ireland.

Speaking on the new studio, Dr. Weeter said:

“In keeping with the spirit of its namesake, the Pauline Oliveros Sound Studio has been designed as a space for learning, creativity and experimentation; it is an exciting development in a Department already rich with possibilities.”

Music Technology is an essential part of being a modern musician, and the new facility opens the doors to diverse areas of study not previously available at UCC.

It constitutes one of the most significant additions to the University’s music resources in many years, and is a very exciting development for current and future students alike.

Developed independently of the bequest, the Pauline Oliveros Sound Studio will now benefit from some new equipment facilitated by the generosity of the Sidney V Regan estate.

The official studio unveiling event will take place via Microsoft Teams on Tuesday 19 January, at 4pm and can be viewed via THIS LINK