Michael William Balfe's 1864 work 'The Sleeping Queen' was his only operetta and written for surprisingly small forces. Una Hunt tells the story of the work ahead of its performance at the NCH – the first staging in Dublin in modern times.
The debate around RTÉ's orchestras points to deeper challenges – it's essential that we keep this debate going, writes Toner Quinn.
Growing concern from music community over implications for musical life if orchestras diminished – we speak to conductors Fergus Sheil and Sinéad Hayes, composer and pianist Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin and violinist Elizabeth Cooney, all of whom have performed with the RTÉ orchestras.
An orchestra playing less new music, writes Adrian Smith, is out of step with contemporary culture. Has the amount of contemporary music being played by the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra been in decline in recent years? Smith undertook an analysis of recent programming.
What makes a political folk opera work? Do traditional musicians go far enough in their experimentations? And what is the 'social side' of classical music? Toner Quinn reflects on a range of questions raised by the musical riches at this year's Kilkenny Arts Festival.
Gearóid Ó hAllmhuráin's reissued book 'A Short History of Irish Traditional Music' stands the test of time, writes Aileen Dillane, and contains new material on female musicians as well as the expanding presence of Irish music studies.
Is the NCH embarking on a ground-breaking curatorial experiment by embracing non-classical genres? Nothing could be further from the truth, writes Adrian Smith.
The suicide bombing at Manchester Arena was the second such attack at a music event in two years. What is to be the role of music in this 'age of anger', asks Toner Quinn.
The recent RTÉ Lyric FM three-part radio series on contemporary Irish music had honesty and many good stories, writes Dónal Sarsfield.
Music critic Tim Rutherford-Johnson's new book on modern composition since 1989 covers a massively broad range of creative musical approaches and techniques, writes John McLachlan, and will inspire a new generation.
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