An evening of experimental music takes place at Block T, Dublin on 25 July

Barry O'Halpin

Barry O’Halpin

The event, which is curated by Irish composer Barry O’Halpin and London-based cross-arts collective Bastard Assignments, features an evening of new music from Irish and UK Composers.

With performances from musicians from the Kirkos Ensemble, the event includes works from composer/performers Sebastian Adams, Tim Cape, Elis Czerniak, Edward Henderson, Paul McGuire and Barry O’Halpin. The event begins at 8pm on 25 July 2014 and there is a bring your own bottle charge of €10.

Bastard Assignments brings together audience members, artists and contributing performers to experience exciting, contemporary performances in unexpected spaces. Initially formed at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance in London, the group has a broad and fluid membership of composers, musicians, dancers and visual artists.

Fresh from their recent S/M/L concert series, which included performances in spaces such as a tea room in Greenwich and a bombed-out church in Peckham, Bastard Assignments will collaborate with local creative musicians to present their first Dublin event at Block T, Smithfield.

The evening will showcase the work of Ireland and UK-based composers and performers operating in the areas between contemporary classical, improvised and electronic music. This performance is intended to be a continuously running performance that will begin at 9.00pm sharp, so arriving early is recommended.

Video from the February Bastard Assignments show in Peckham, London

New Music Digest: 14 – 20 July

2014-06_dic_tat_Events This Week

Organist Gerard Gillen will perform Charles Villiers Stanford‘s Intermezzo (on an Irish Air), op. 189 no. 4 in a Summer Concert

  • 17 Jul, 8pm, Galway Cathedral, Galway
  • More

DIC TAT, a new sound and visual exhibition by Marie Hanlon and Rhona Clarke opens this week, and will run until September

  • 17 Jul, 7pm, Draíocht Arts Centre, Blanchardstown, Dublin
  • More

A ballet by Donal Sarsfield, called We/Part, will be performed by the Baletto di Roma, with choreography by Paolo Mangiola.

  • 19 Jul, 9pm, Teatro Rossini, Rome
  • More

The Walled City Music Festival in Derry opens this weekend, and features a performance of music by Ed Bennett and Ian Wilson by the Trio Festivale.

  • 18 – 26 Jul, Magee Campus, Derry
  • More

The Carrick Water Music Festival takes place this week, and features a concert of music from the New York Hypnotic School by Crash Ensemble on Thursday

  • 15 – 20 Jul, The Dock, Carrick-on-Shannon, Leitrim
  • More

Meet the Composer: Nora Constance Walsh

We profile some of the composers who have been accepted for CMC representation over the last year.

Norah Constance Walsh is a composer and musician from Co. Kildare currently based in Dublin. She received a first class B.Mus degree from the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama in 2012, specialising in composition with teachers Jane O’Leary and Dave Flynn. Her works have been performed by the Dublin String Quartet, the Hilltown Ensemble, sopranos Edel Shannon, Elizabeth Hilliard and Sinéad Conway among many others.

Her work Lamentable (2013) for voice, organ and cello was premiered by Elizabeth Hilliard (S-solo), David Bremner (org) and Claire Fitch (vc) at Hilltown New Music Festival on 20 July 2013.


A new exhibition featuring the work of composer Rhona Clarke and visual artist Marie Hanlon opens in Draiocht Art Centre, Blanchardstown


Entitled DIC TAT, the exhibition runs from 17 July to 6 September and comprises synchronised video, a suite of drawings, six electronic sound works and photographic documentation of sound sourcing.

The artists explain the background to the project:

‘The title, taken from the video piece, explores variations of mark making while drawing to the pulse of a metronome. Here the metronome ʻdictatesʼ the pace, beating out precise measures for the drawing hand to follow. Generally in music the function of a metronome is to regularize a players timing, here the opposite applies. Split seconds between beats allow choices in direction and placing. The drawing tool may be handled differently, a line can be longer, shorter, curved or straight, while still observing a strictly measured beat. Given such restrictions, the markings are notably varied, expressive and irregular.

The sound works were mostly composed using a metronome, either as a sound source in itself or as a background pulse, often eliminated in the final mix-down.’

Dublin-based Marie Hanlon has worked as a professional artist since 1990. Although known as an abstract artist she now uses a broader range of media. Video, projection and installation have resulted from joint projects and collaborations, especially with contemporary composers.

A member of Aosdána, Rhona Clarke currently lecturers in Music at St Patrickʼs College, DCU, and she has received commissions from Cork International Choral Festival, Concorde, Music Network, the National Concert Hall, among others. Her commission for the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, SHIFT, was selected to represent Ireland at the 2014 International Rostrum of Composers.

The exhibition will be opened at the Draiocht Art Centre, Blanchardstown on 17 July at 7pm by Evonne Ferguson, CMC Director.

Further information:

New Music Digest: 7 – 13 July

10446995_696815917047011_4694319363480404093_nEvents This Week

The Irish Composers’ Collective present the second of their collaborations with the New Dublin Voices choir

  • 12 Jul, 8pm, St. Anne’s Church, Dublin
  • More

Sir James Galway performs Bill Whelan‘s recent work Linen and Lace in the US

  • 8 Jul, 8pm, Ravinia Festival, Highland Park, Chicago

The Fidelio Trio will play a work by Ronan Guilfoyle at a concert at St. Patrick’s College Drumcondra, where they are ensemble-in-residence

  • 9 Jul, 7.30pm, St. Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, Dublin

Matthew Schellhorn continues his tour of performances of Ian Wilson‘s recent work Stations

  • 10 Jul, 1.15pm, Ripon Cathedral, Yorkshire, UK
  • More

Swedish contemporary ensemble KROCK perform a concert in Dublin including Sean Clancy‘s Forty Minutes of Music on the Subject of Football.

  • 11 Jul, 8.30pm, Kevin Barry Room, National Concert Hall, Dublin
  • More

Fiona Linnane, with soprano Sandra Oman, will perform her own work The Bay of Fundy in recital

  • 12 Jul, 7pm, Castalia Hall, Callan, Co. Kilkenny

Music Circus on the Great Book of Ireland features new works by UCC students and graduates, including Linda Buckley and Francis Heery.

  • 12 Jul, 1pm, Glucksman Gallery, Cork
  • More

The Irish Youth Choir will perform their Heavenly Bodies programme in Dublin

  • 7 Jul, 8pm, Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin
  • More

Meet the Composer: Sam Barker

We profile some of the composers who have been accepted for CMC representation over the last year.

Sam Barker studied at CIT Cork School of Music, and achieved his MA in composition under C.S.L. Parker in 2011. His works have been performed nationwide by the Cork New Music Ensemble, Alex Petcu, the Diversus Guitar Ensemble and by himself as performer.

His work Sonnet # III (2011) for solo vibraphone was premiered by Alex Petcu in a Cork New Music Ensemble concert at CIT Cork School of Music on 21 May 2011 and received a second performance in the same venue on 16 January 2014.

Listen to this work on Cork New Music Ensemble’s SoundCloud page here:


New Music Digest: 30 June – 6 July


Events This Week

The West Cork Chamber Music Festival continues, with concerts and workshops until Saturday

  • 27 Jun – 5 Jul, Bantry, Cork
  • More

Ergodos launch their latest album, Songs, with a performance of arrangements of songs from classical to pop

  • 3 Jul, 8pm, Little Museum of Dublin, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin
  • More

Percussionist Alex Petcu-Colan performs a solo recital titled Percussive Counterpoint, with music by Donnacha Dennehy, Xenakis and others

  • 4 Jul, 7pm, Kevin Barry Room, National Concert Hall, Dublin
  • More

Wide Open Opera present a series of 5 short operas by Brian Irvine and John McIlduff , Things We Throw Away, in public venues around Dublin.

  • 4-5 July, Dublin
  • More

CMC presents the third commission in the New Notes Now! series with a concert featuring a new work by Neil Martin, inspired by the Poulaphouca Reservoir

  • 6 Jul, 3pm, Tulfarris Hotel, Blessington, Co. Wicklow
  • More

Jazz trio Bourne Davis Kane will perform a Music Biennial-funded commission by Piers Hellawell, called Sound Carvings, Strange Tryst

  • 6 Jul, 6pm, Queen Elizabeth Hall, London, UK
  • More


Meet the Composer: Dennis Wyers

We profile some of the composers who have been accepted for CMC representation over the last year.

Dennis Wyers completed a masters degree in composition at WIT with Dr Eric Sweeney. He writes music influenced by jazz, contemporary classical and electroacoustic music. In 2011, he founded the Earpiece collective to present concerts of spectral music. He is currently pursuing a PhD in Machine listening and learning for interactive audio-based music systems at the University of Limerick.

His work Aurora Borealis (2010) for female voices  was premiered by Blue Bulb Music Vocal Ensemble with conductor Emma O’Halloran at an ICC concert in the Kevin Barry Room, National Concert Hall on 28 June 2010.

Listen to this and other works on the composer’s SoundCloud page


Vincent Kennedy’s work performed at the World Harp Congress in Sydney

Vincent Kennedy will conduct four performances of his work The Chronicles of Meath in July with the Meath Harp Ensemble, the highlight of which is the performance at the World Harp Congress Sydney on Friday, 25 July.

Commissioned by Meath County Council under the per cent for Art scheme, The Chronicles of Meath was written for the Meath Harp Ensemble led by Dearbhail Finnegan. Each of the seven moments is inspired by a place or facet of County Meath’s rich heritage and history and includes titles such as Newgrange, The Hill of Tara – The Hill of Slane, and The Book of Kells.

Performances of the work take place at the Cairde na Cruite International Harp Festival, An Grianain, Termonfeckin, County Louth on 1 July; The Thosel, Drogheda, County Louth on 5 July; and at the Irish Embassy, Canberra, in Australia on 21 July; with the final performance on 25 July at The Grand Ballroom, Four Season’s Hotel, Sydney as part of the The World Harp Congress.

Wide Open Opera presents a series of five short operas by Brian Irvine and John McIlduff in public spaces around Dublin on 4 and 5 July


The project, Things We Throw Away, is inspired by the lives of real people in Dublin and is commissioned as part of Dublin City Public Art Programme. Based on short moments that would normally go un-noticed, and by discarded items thrown away on the street, the operas aim to capture the life and poetry behind these almost inconsequential episodes.

Featuring Sylvia O’Brien (soprano), Doreen Curran (mezzo) Gerry Noonan (baritone) and Niamh Lawlor (puppeteer), with a specially recorded soundtrack performed by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra conducted by Fergus Sheil, each opera will be performed 4 times in locations throughout Dublin City.

Drive By Shooting
Coppinger Row, Dublin 2
12:00      General Post Office (GPO), O’Connell Street, Dublin 1
13:00      Mayor Sq, Docklands, Dublin 1 – at National College of Ireland

Wake Up Son
Madigan’s Bar, Connolly Station, Dublin 1
15:45      Grand Canal Dock, Dublin 2 – outside Bar H.
17:00      Chatham Street, Dublin 2 – outside Nearys.

Suck It In
Curved St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2.
19:00      Smithfield, Dublin 1 – outside Lighthouse Cinema.
20:00      Talbot St, Dublin 1 – at corner of James Joyce St.

Saturday 5th July

Ironing Board Blues
Newmarket Square, The Liberties, Dublin 8 – at Green Door Market.
12:15      Cow’s Lane, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 – at West Essex St.
13:30      Mary Street, Dublin 1 – near Wolfe Tone Sq.

I Just Sell My Bananas
Mountjoy Sq, Dublin 1 – Gardiner St side.
15:30      West Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 – near Parliament St.
16:30      Clarendon St., Dublin 2 – at Coppinger Row.

Complete Cycle of all 5 operas
Dame Court, Dublin 2
                  1. Suck It In
                  2. Wake Up Son
                  3. I Just Sell My Bananas
                  4. Ironing Board Blues
                  5. Drive By Shooting

Further information:

‘Songs’, a new album by Dublin music production company and label Ergodos is launched

Featuring performances by Ergodos Musicians, Songs includes songs by Steve Earle, The xx, Richard Thompson, Donnacha Dennehy, and Antonio Vivaldi, among others, arranged by Benedict Schlepper-Connolly and Garrett Sholdice.

Described as a “fluid band of musicians under the umbrella of Ergodos”, in this recording Ergodos Musicians features vocalist Michelle O’Rourke, cellist and co-artistic director of the Crash Ensemble Kate Ellis, and woodwind instrumentalist Seán Mac Erlaine.

To mark the launch of the album, the group will perform on 3 July at the Little Museum of Dublin, St. Stephan’s Green at 8.00pm, with copies of the album available for sale and a complimentary wine reception after the performance.

Further details and booking:

CMC will hold two workshops for composers and performers on 24 July as part of its first ‘Summer Camp’

Bernard Clarke

Bernard Clarke

The workshops will be given by established music educator and choral practitioner Anne Barry on writing for young singers, and RTÉ lyric fm Nova presenter Bernard Clarke on securing media coverage for composers.

Anne Barry’s workshop takes place from 10am–1.30pm and will look at writing for children’s voices, and developing and emerging adolescent voices. The physiological, pedagogical and artistic aspects of composition for these age groups will be the main focus of the sessions. In addition, consideration for the needs and objectives of the teacher/conductor will be addressed. The session will also provide an opportunity for individual or group composition sharing for consideration and advice.

‘Joining me in studio … ’ is the title of Bernard Clarke’s workshop from 2–4pm. He will outline a thumbnail radio-broadcast history of new music on this island before going on to highlight strategies for the musician in dealing with media (and particularly radio) today. He describes the workshop:

’Almost all, if not all, contemporary composers and their works suffer what Raymond Deane once termed the “honour of non-existence” in this country.

Major productions – be they operas or installations, symphonies or acousmatic works – are often deemed “fringe activities which have little or no connection with the mainstream”.

How does the composer combat such ignorance? How does the composer help secure media coverage of his/her work?’

This session will be followed by an informal discussion on various topics of interest to composers and performers, followed by a reception.

Places in the workshops are limited and attendance is by invitation only, however anyone interested in attending either of the workshops should get in touch with Karen Hennessy, CMC Promotion Manager,

KROCK perform a work by Seán Clancy on 11 July at the Kevin Barry Room, Dublin

Ensemble KROCK

Ensemble KROCK

Swedish ensemble KROCK specialise in playing contemporary music for electric guitars and electronics and since forming in 2005 have commissioned and premiered more than 30 pieces from internationally renowned composers.

Fresh from Birmingham’s recent Frontiers Downtown Festival, they present Three Objects in a Concert Hall featuring Seán Clancy’s Forty-Five Minutes on the Subject of Football, Monolog X’s Where a Powerful Song of the Earth is Unleashed, and Joe Cutler’s Chords on the Shore.

The concert, which takes place in the Kevin Barry Room, National Concert Hall on 11 July at 8.30pm, will be the first time Ensemble KROCK performs in Ireland.

Commissioned by Ensemble KROCK, Seán Clancy’s Forty-Five Minutes on the Subject of Football relives the intense minutes that took place during a game 20 years ago. With the players needing to find stamina equal to professional football players, you can hear the different teams struggle, an adamant defence against a more and more desperate offence.

Monolog X’s Where a Powerful Song of the Earth is Unleashed is a story about two spaces. The constantly changing space of melody and tone, conjoined by tiny fragments, and the structured space of rhythm that falls apart. It is a journey between the vast emptiness of space and colourful nebulas via the small man’s faith, hope and love.

Also commissioned by the ensemble, Joe Cutler’s Chords on the Shore starts off with a sense of being in a perfectly calm sunny afternoon at the beach but things happen in nature that are more dramatic than you imagine at a first glance.

Tickets are available from the National Concert Hall web site.


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