The Inaugural EPTA Ireland Piano Festival

Jennifer O’Connor reports for CMC on the recent EPTA Ireland Piano Festival, which featured a contemporary Irish competition sponsored by CMC

The inaugural EPTA Ireland Piano Festival took place between the 22 and the 24 February 2012 in the Kevin Barry Room at the National Concert Hall. The festival, which was in association with the Contemporary Music Centre and The National Concert Hall, featured open repertoire competitions for secondary school students, with an individual competition for each year. The festival also had a contemporary Irish competition, with prizes awarded from the Contemporary Music Centre. The contemporary competition was open to all senior secondary school students and the requirement was to perform a work by an Irish composer from after 1960.

The competition had two performers, Eoin Doyle and Niamh Farrell. Both performed Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin’s Woodbrook. The competition was adjudicated by Pádhraic Ó Cuinneagáin and it was won by Niamh Farrell. Before presenting the awards to both contestants, Karen Hennessy, Promotional Manager for the Contemporary Music Centre, spoke of how CMC was delighted to be involved in the inaugural EPTA piano festival and that they hoped that the contemporary Irish competition was one that would grow from year to year, as the festival continued.

The festival saw just over one hundred students take to the stage over the course of the two days, performing a wide variety of repertoire. The festival director, Gráinne Deery, was delighted with both the turn out and the high standard of performances.

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