Kirkos present Rite

The Royal Irish Academy of Music’s student contemporary music ensemble Kirkos will present a concert that celebrates the centenary of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. Through ‘re-compositions’ of the parts of the work by selected Irish composers performed by a string trio, the ensemble will reflect on the impact of the Rite of Spring on contemporary composers and musicians.

The fourteen composers who have written for Rite are Sebastian Adams, Breffni O’Byrne, Andrew Hamilton, Ian Wilson, Bill McGrath, Fergus Johnston, Gerald Barry, Raymond Deane, Robert Coleman, Garrett Sholdice, Jonathan Nangle, Evangelia Rigaki, Fergal Mulloy and Kevin O’Connell.

Kirkos director Sebastian Adams on Rite:

“The composers were chosen in an attempt to represent a mixture of the various styles and generations of composers prevalent in Ireland at the moment. We haven’t managed to cover every base, but we have managed to put together an enviable and multifarious collection of composers. Key to the whole idea was the mixture of top professional composers with students.

I have talked at length elsewhere about Rite and the significance of the centenary and so on, but one of the most important and amazing things about the whole project is something I have not yet said anything about. Kirkos, as a group of student performers with absolutely no money, were able to convince (with surprising ease) nine composers who are indisputably among Ireland’s finest to write new works for absolutely no money. This idealism, this altruism, says a great deal about the individual composers we asked, and about the spirit of the new music scene in Ireland. Even more than that, it speaks volumes about the extent to which Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring continues to resonate in the ears and minds of composers a whole century after it first sparked riots.”

The first performance of Rite takes place on Wednesday 29 May at 10pm at the Odessa Club, and a second performance takes place at Smock Alley Theatre on 11 July.


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