Irish Freemasons Young Musician Of The Year

Irish Freemasons Young Musician Of The Year

Saturday, 8 October 2022, 7.00pm




Supported by RTÉ LYRIC FM

We are delighted to announce that the Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year competition will return this year, following a two year absence due to the pandemic. Recognised internationally, the prestigious Irish Freemasons YOUNG MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR Competition returns for the eleventh year and is one of the most important dates in the calendars of young musicians who will be the future of classical music in Ireland and around the globe.

This year’s Competition will take place before an International Jury, chaired by Jane Carty, as follows:

· The Semi-Finals – Thurs. 6th October 2022 @ Freemasons’ Hall, 17 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 @ 1.00pm and 7.00pm

· The Finals – Saturday, 8th October 2022 @ Freemasons’ Hall, 17 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 @ 7.00pm

The prestige of winning this competition opens many doors for these young musicians from high profile engagements to performing concerts, teaching internationally and holding positions with professional orchestras around the globe. This competition is recognised internationally.

It is important to The Irish Freemasons, as part of their community outreach, to recognise the longstanding association that Freemasonry has had with music. Music has always played an important part of masonic life. Many performers and composers have been members of the craft, including Haydn and even John Walter Bratton (who wrote the music to The Teddy Bear’s Picnic!) Many people will know Mozart was a Freemason. Mozart wrote many pieces of music for use in Masonic Lodges.

Members of the International Jury for 2022 are: Jane Carty (Chairperson of the Jury), Brian Dickie (England), Maighréad McCrann (Ireland), Veronica McSwiney (Ireland), Carole Dawn Reinhart (Austria) and Seamus Crimmins (Ireland),

Fifteen competitors will perform at the Semi Finals and four of these will then be chosen by the Jury to go on to the Final. The Semi Finals on 6th October and the Final on Saturday, 8th October 2022 are open to the public. Tickets are on sale at Freemasons Hall, 17 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 from September 1st. The Final sells out very quickly.

The Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year Competition Prizes to be awarded by The Grand Lodge of Freemasons of Ireland are:

· 1st Prize: €5,000

· 2nd Prize: €3,000

· 3rd Prize: €1,500

· 4th Prize: €1,250

There are two extra prizes in addition:

· ‘The John Vallery Memorial Prize’ (sponsored by Mary Beattie in memory of her husband, the viola player, John Vallery). This prize is €1,000 and will be awarded to the competitor (in either the semi-finals or the final) who, in the opinion of the Jury has given the best performance by a String player in the 2022 competition.

· ‘The Conrad O’Sullivan Memorial Prize (sponsored by Mrs. Geraldine O’Sullivan in memory of her son, Conrad). This prize is also €1,000 and will be awarded to the competitor (in either the semi-finals or the final) who, in the opinion of the Jury has given the best performance by a Wind or Brass player in the 2022 competition.

The following will also be offered to the Winner of The Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year 2022 Competition:

· A solo engagement during 2023 with the RTE National Symphony Orchestra

· Submission of the recording (at RTE LYRIC FM’s discretion) of the Winner’s performance to the European Broadcasting Union New Talent Competition, as RTE Lyric FM’s entry for 2022.

· A Recital engagement at the National Concert Hall during 2023

· An engagement at the ‘Music in Monkstown Festival’ in 2023

The patrons of the competition are: Jane Carty, Dearbhla Collins, Eamonn Lawlor and John Rowden. Full Biographies of the Patrons are available on the competition website which is

The semi-finalists at The Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year 2022 Competition are selected by the Music Colleges themselves from the cream of their students. Competitors must be full time students for the college year 2021 – 2022, pursuing a Degree in Music Performance at Undergraduate, Post Graduate or Doctoral Level, or a Post Graduate Diploma in Music Performance at the following Music Institutions in Ireland who offer Performance Degrees:

· The Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin

· The Technological University, Dublin

· The DIT Conservatory of Music, Dundalk

· The CIT Cork School of Music, Cork

· The Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick (MA in Classical String Performance).

· Queen’s University Belfast

Music has always played an important part of masonic life. Here is an interesting list of Masonic Musicians:

Classical: Leopold Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Josef Haydn, Emile Schikenader (Librettist of The Magic Flute), Jan Sibelius, Thomas Arne, Johnann Christian Bach (Son of J S Bach), Michael Balfe, Luigi Cherubini, Charles Francis Gounod, Franz Liszt, Felix Mendelssohn, Giacomo Meyerbeer, Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle (‘The Marseillaise’), Sigmund Romberg, Sir Arthur Sullivan, Samuel Wesley.

Popular: John Philip Sousa, Louis Armstrong, William ‘Count’ Basie, Irving Berlin, George M Cohan, Nat ‘King’ Cole, Duke Ellington, George Gershwin, Al Jolson, Paul Whiteman

And finally, John Walter Bratton (who wrote the music to The Teddy Bear’s Picnic!)

Jury Members 2022

JANE CARTY – Patron & Artistic Director and Chairperson of the Jury:

In June 2010 Jane Carty was awarded the highest honour the Royal Irish Academy of Music can give – The Fellowship Honoris Causa (FRIAM). Jane Carty was born in Dublin, graduating with a B. Mus. Degree and a B.A. Degree in Music and Modern Languages, from University College, Dublin, as well as the Diploma in Music Teaching, receiving an Exhibition Award as a result of her B. Mus. Degree examination, having studied in Paris, Strasbourg and Perugia, Italy. She started her career as a teacher of Piano, Theory and Composition at what is now the TU Dublin Conservatory of Music and Drama. A singer, pianist and cellist herself, she presented and produced documentary music programmes for Radio from the major European Music Festivals during her subsequent career as Executive Producer for Radió Telefiś Éireann, Ireland’s national broadcasting organisation. She organised and directed national competitions for choirs, singers, instrumentalists and composers, and was the Founder/Director of the RTÉ Musician of the Future Festival. Her work as a singing, choral and instrumental Jury Member has taken her all over Europe, including, for many years, the Llangollen International Choral Eisteddfod in Wales, as well as further afield to Hong Kong and the West Indies.

See website for her biog:

Brian Dickie - Juror:

Brian Dickie has worked in opera over six decades and stepped down in August 2012 as General Director of Chicago Opera Theatre where he had been since 1999.

After leaving Trinity College Dublin in 1961 he began his opera career at the Glyndebourne Festival in England in 1962, as assistant to the Head of Music Staff, Jani Strasser. He remained at Glyndebourne for twenty-seven years with increasing responsibilities. He was a leading member of the team which established Glyndebourne Touring Opera, and became the company’s first Administrator in 1967, as well as serving as Opera Manager for the Festival. He was appointed General Administrator of Glyndebourne Festival Opera in 1981. Brian was appointed Artistic Director of the Wexford Festival at the age of 25 in 1967 and served there until 1973 when his Glyndebourne and family responsibilities became too onerous. In 1989 he left Glyndebourne to become General Director of the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto. Continue to read his impressive biog here:

Maighréad McCrann (Ireland) - Juror: Maighréad McCrann has been Concertmaster of the ORF Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra since 1993. In 1997 she was appointed Professor of Violin at the University of Performing Arts in Graz. During this time she has also enjoyed a versatile career as a soloist chamber musician and directing chamber orchestras from the violin. Her passion for teaching has resulted in many masterclasses and intense coaching with youth orchestras of Spain, Cataluña, Columbia, the Viennese Jeunesse Orchestra and the National Orchestral Institute in Washington. Born in Dublin where she studied music with Brian McNamara, she graduated from Trinity College of Music in 1984 and commenced studying in Vienna with Ernst Kovacic, and further violin lessons with Sandor Vegh and David Takeno. She was a member of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and played baroque violin with Nikolaus Harnoncourt’s Concentus Musicus.

Séamus Crimmins (Ireland) – Juror: Séamus Crimmins has played a central role in music in Ireland, particularly through key positions which he held at RTÉ. He served as founding Head, RTÉ Lyric fm and in 2007 was appointed Director, RTÉ Orchestras, Quartet and Choirs. Both RTÉ roles delineate his love of music and broadcasting.

He showed promise as a conductor while taking an Honours Music Degree at Queen’s University Belfast and received an ACNI Bursary to study with George Hurst at Canford. Later he undertook further conducting masterclasses with Janos Fürst. While teaching music at the Abbey Grammar School Newry (his alma mater) he resuscitated Newry Choral Union and in 1982 founded Dun Laoghaire Choral Society. His professional conducting experience includes the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Northern Chamber Orchestra (UK), RTÉ CO, Orchestra of St Cecilia, Talich Chamber Orchestra Prague, London Baroque Sinfonia and many freelance orchestras. For more on Seamus see his biog:

Veronica McSwiney (Ireland) - Juror: Veronica McSwiney was born in Dublin, Ireland, where she commenced her studies with D.J.J. O’Reilly at the Municipal School of music when she was seven years old. She gave her recital debut in Dublin at the age of sixteen and came to the attention of Sir Robert and Lady Dorothy Mayer, great entrepreneurs from London, who assisted her further studies at the Mozarteum Academy in Saltzburg under Bruno Seidlhofer, and in London with the eminent Hungarian teacher, Ilona Kabas. By the time she was nineteen years old she had already played 6 different piano concertos with Ireland’s National Symphony Orchestra, then known as the RTESO. After her Wigmore Hall debut in London, her reputation spread far beyond her native Ireland. As a direct result of her highly acclaimed recording of the John Field Nocturnes, she was the first Irish pianist to be invited to do an extensive recital tour of the USSR in 1975, and was invited back for three subsequent tours, and played concertos with many of their finest orchestras. She has played extensively throughout Europe and the USA, and has also played with many orchestras in the UK, including the LSO, the CBSO and the BBC Philharmonic. Her repertoire of concertos included all 5 Beethoven, 5 Mozart, Grieg, Schumann, Rach. No2, Dohnanyi Variations, Two Mendelssohn, Two Liszt, Saint-Saens No2, Chopin E Minor, and John Field No. 2. For more on Veronica see her biog:

Carole Dawn Reinhart - Juror: Carole Dawn Reinhart is recognized as one of the world’s outstanding trumpet soloists, acclaimed not only for her technical ability, but also for tone quality and interpretation. A Christmas “carol” born at “dawn”, she received her first instruction at age 2 1/2 on a slide cornet from her mother, a trombonist. Already at 7, Carole was playing duets in concerts with her older brother, who was an accomplished cornetist. She received a scholarship to the Juilliard School of Music in New York when she was 10. At age16, commissioned as the youngest and only woman bandmaster in the Salvation Army, she made her first international appearance as guest soloist and conductor in Toronto, and at age 19, she was guest soloist with the ISB on tour in England. Carole’s studies: a symphony orchestra scholarship to the University of Miami (BA cum laude), a Fulbright scholarship in Vienna (first woman on a brass instrument –”Reifezeugnis” with honors), scholarships to the Juilliard School of Music (BM and MS) and 1st trumpet in the Juilliard Orchestra. For more on Carole see her biog:

The Patrons

Dearbhla Collins – Patron is one of Ireland's finest and most versatile musicians. As well as being an accomplished and prize-winning solo pianist with a distinguished performing career nationally and internationally, she is respected equally as chamber musician and vocal coach and musical administrator. She is the Executive Artistic Director of the prestigious triennial Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition in Dublin. She is a Patron of the Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year Competition.

Dearbhla was a member of the Board of the National Concert Hall, Dublin from 2010 - 2015 having previously served two terms as a Director of Culture Ireland. She is also a piano teacher and Vocal Coach at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She often teams up with her brother Finghin Collins for 4-hand recitals and 2 piano performances. Dearbhla has travelled regularly to China, where she has given performances with bass John Molloy, mezzo soprano Aylish Kerrigan and soprano Lynda Lee, including a recital of Irish music in the prestigious National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing. Dearbhla regularly plays for classes and masterclasses with Dame Ann Murray and has also played for lessons with Sir Thomas Allen, Sergei Lieferkus and Brigitte Fassbender. Performances include concerts with sopranos Sarah-Jane Brandon, Anna Devin and Pumeza Matshikiza; mezzo-sopranos Tara Erraught, Rachel Kelly, Dame Ann Murray and the late Bernadette Greevy; tenors Paul Austin Kelly, Paul McNamara, Mark Padmore and Robin Tritschler; baritones Gavan Ring and Detlef Roth. These performances include engagements nationwide in Ireland, in the US, Germany, Tunisia, Paris and the Wigmore Hall, London. She has also toured the US with Tara Erraught and given masterclasses and recitals in Beijing, Shanghai and Wuhan in China. She has worked with the NSOI, Opera Ireland, Opera Theatre Company and Welsh National Opera. In 2006 she coordinated, in association with the Austrian Embassy, all major events taking place in Ireland to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Mozart. Dearbhla was the moving force behind the 2003 Dublin Hugo Wolf Festival, when under her artistic direction the complete songs of the Austrian composer were performed for the first time in Ireland. She curates Dublin Song Series with her brother Finghin in partnership with the National Concert Hall and the Hugh Lane Gallery. Other projects included concerts at the Hugh Lane Gallery, Dublin with Angela Brower, mezzo soprano and BBC 3 recordings with Egyptian soprano, Fatma Said.

Eamonn Lawlor – Patron: Before joining RTÉ lyric FM when the station opened in 1999, Eamonn was one of Ireland's leading news and current affairs broadcasters. He was RTÉ's European Correspondent for ten years and presented the 'Six One' news and 'Prime Time' on RTÉ One. More recently he was the ‘voice of music’ on RTÉ lyric FM, presenting The Lyric Concert (Mon-Thurs, 8.30pm-11pm) as well as the regular Friday night RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra concerts live from the National Concert Hall. He holds an MA in Modern English and American Literature from University College Dublin. Since his schooldays he has been passionately interested in the Arts, particularly music and literature.

Since his retirement from broadcasting he has been actively pursuing his interests in Buddhism, languages, literature and music, and has appeared on stage as reader/narrator in Michael Murphy’s Stories, Poetry and Dreams and Simon Morgan’s Keep the Home Fires Burning.

John N Rowden – Patron: started playing piano at the age of eight, realising his ambition by transferring to organ at the age of 16. He studied under W S Grieg at St Patricks Cathedral, Dublin, and then later became a protege of Ralph Vaughan Williams. He has played at the National Concert Hall Dublin, The Ulster Hall Belfast, The Guildhall in Derry, Notre Dame, Paris and Liverpool Cathedral, England; not to speak of most of the Churches in and around Dublin. He was accompanist to many Choral Societies including the Seafield Singers, and has been Grand Organist of the Grand Lodge of Ireland for over 20 years.


Full Biographies and pictures of the 2022 Semi-finalists are available on the competition website which is

We are very pleased to announce the following Semi-Finalists for the Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year 2022. The semi-finals will be held at Freemasons Hall, Dublin on Thursday, October 6th, 2022:

David Barnett French Horn Cork School of Music

Adam Buttimer Tuba RIAM

Grace Coughlan Cello Cork School of Music

Julia DuBuclet Violin University of Limerick

Meabh Fitzgerald Piano Cork School of Music

Anna Gioria Violin University of Limerick

Valentine Laporte Flute TU Dublin

Oran McBrien Piano Queen’s University Belfast

Jude McCann Piano TU Dublin

Eimear McDonagh Concert Harp TU Dublin

Laoise McMullin Piano RIAM

Anna Mitchell Violin University of Limerick

Kim O’Brien Flute RIAM

Meadhbh O’Rourke Flute RIAM

Stephane Petiet Double Bass Cork School of Music

Julianna Odubajo Viola TU Dublin

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