Finding a Voice Celebrating Female Composers in Clonmel

Ailís Ní Riain

Finding a Voice Celebrating Female Composers in Clonmel

Seven concerts to take place from 4 to 8 March for 5th edition of festival, including performances by Samantha Ege, Darragh Morgan and Mary Dullea, Pauline Scanlon, Julie Comparini, Yonit Kosovske and more.

Finding a Voice, the annual festival dedicated to the music of women composers, is taking place this week from 4 to 8 March. The festival, which is now in its fifth year, will take place live in Clonmel following last year’s online programme due to the pandemic. 

The festival will feature works by a range of composers including Deirdre McKay, Clara Schumann, Florence Price, Lili Boulanger and Ailís Ní Riain. The theme for this year is ‘Relationships’ and several concerts will explore the concept in its different iterations, whether that is between performers, the connection between a performer and the music, or the relationship between music and words.

Commenting on the festival, Artistic Director Róisín Maher said:

I’m so delighted that restrictions have been lifted and that we will be back in front of live audiences. We have a fantastic line-up of musicians and events that will entice people to Clonmel for a weekend of wonderful music making.

The opening concert on 4 March at Clonmel’s Old St Mary’s Church will be a performance by British pianist Samantha Ege. This will be Ege’s first performance in Ireland and she will give the Irish premières of piano music by Black American composers Florence Price and Margaret Bonds, and Czech composer Vítězslava Kaprálová. 

At 1pm on Saturday 5 March, Darragh Morgan and Mary Dullea will perform a programme of music for violin and piano from composers Clara Schumann, Lili Boulanger, Ruth Crawford Seeger and Florence Price. The pair will also perform two recent works by Deirdre McKay – Secundum and a quarter million miles from the moon.

Later that day, Cassiopeia Winds* quintet will perform a concert of works by composers Claude Arrieu, Valerie Coleman, ‍Amy Beach and Adele O’Dwyer, and will be joined by pianist Fiachra Garvey for a performance of Louise Farrenc’s Sextet for Piano and Winds.

There will also be a screening of Amanda Feery and Megan Nolan’s video opera A Thing I Cannot Namefeaturing Kelli-Ann Masterson, Rachel Goode, and Aebh Kelly (6 March); a concert celebrating the music of Broadway and West End productions, with singer Sinéad O’Donovan (4 March); and on 6 March, folk singer-songwriter Pauline Scanlon will perform music from her upcoming album The Unquiet.

Next Tuesday 8 March, the final concert of Finding a Voice 2022 will celebrate International Women’s Day with a concert featuring singer Julie Comparini, pianist Yonit Kosovske, and poet Jessica Brown performing music and spoken word in a recital titled ‘Reflections’. The concert will feature a newly commissioned song cycle by Ailís Ní Ríain titled Watershed, which was inspired by the natural bodies of water and land in Ireland’s mid-west region and along the Atlantic coast. It features a text by Killaloe resident and poet Jessica Brown.

For further information and tickets, visit:

Programme change – 5 March: ConTempo Quartet will be appearing instead of Cassiopeia Winds and will play Farrenc’s work in its Piano Quintet version. The programme will also include Jane O’Leary’s Passing Sound of Forever and Onuté Narbutaité’s just strings and a light wind above them.

Published on 1 March 2022

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