New Appointments in Music: UK and Ireland (April 2019)

The Maxwell Quartet – appointed Music at Paxton Associate Ensemble for 2019-2021.

New Appointments in Music: UK and Ireland (April 2019)

Appointments at Music Generation, Glyndebourne, Making Music, Music at Paxton, and St Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Cork.

A round-up of recent news

Music Generation, together with Kilkenny and Carlow Education and Training Board, has announced the appointment of Irish soprano, vocal coach and educator Sinéad Blanchfield to the role of Music Generation Development Officer for Kilkenny.

Blanchfield will develop a programme of music education for children and young people ages 0 to 18 across the county.

Originally from Kilkenny, Blanchfield is a classical crossover artist and has performed at festivals and venues across Europe and developed her own one-woman shows. She has appeared on UTV, BBC and RTÉ and holds a BA in music, a postgraduate diploma in education and a postgraduate award in performance from the Royal Northern College of Music.

Commenting on her appointment Blanchfield said:

I’m thrilled to return to my native Kilkenny to take up this new role as Music Generation Development Officer… As a mentor and educator I’ve seen the enormous difference that music can make in young people’s lives, developing skills, confidence and creativity. I’m excited and energised to create access to these same inspiring opportunities for many more children and young people within our local communities and to build on Kilkenny’s already rich musical landscape.

For more, visit

Aidan Oliver has been appointed to the role of Chorus Master at Glyndebourne opera. He has been Acting Chorus Master since March 2019.

Oliver has worked across the full spectrum of symphonic, liturgical, operatic and contemporary music in the UK. He is founding director of Philharmonia Voices, the professional choir that has collaborated with the Philharmonia Orchestra since 2004, particularly under Principal Conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen. In 2018, he took up the directorship of the Edinburgh Festival Chorus, which performs in several concerts each year at the Edinburgh International Festival. He will continue in his position with Edinburgh Festival Chorus alongside his new role at Glyndebourne.

Stephen Langridge, Artistic Director of Glyndebourne, said:

We’re delighted to have made this appointment. The Glyndebourne Chorus enjoys an international reputation for excellence and Aidan’s pedigree and experience as a chorus director makes him the ideal person to guide the ensemble in to the future.

For more, visit

Making Music, the organisation for voluntary music groups with a membership of over 3,500, has announced conductor and composer Debbie Wiseman OBE as President.

Wiseman has composed music for film and television productions such as Edie, Wolf Hall, The Andrew Marr Show and Stephen Fry in America. Awarded the Gold Badge of Merit by the British Academy of Composers & Songwriters, she is also a Visiting Professor at the Royal College of Music. Her ‘Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra’, Different Voices, is frequently performed by school and youth orchestras.

Making Music Chief Executive Barbara Eifler commented:

We are delighted and honoured that Debbie has agreed to be our next President, following in the footsteps of other composers in our 84-year history, including Peter Maxwell Davies and Ralph Vaughan Williams. Her work is familiar to millions and we hope with Debbie’s help to reach even more people and show them that making music is for everyone.

For more, visit

Maxwell Quartet, the string quartet that performs classical and folk music, has been appointed Associate Ensemble for 2019-2021 at the Music at Paxton festival in Scotland. The quartet won the 2017 Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition and recently presented a series of curated chamber concerts at Guardswell Farm in Inchture, Scotland.

Commenting on their appointment, the group said:

We have so many exciting ideas about what we might get up to at Music at Paxton in the coming years, from ground-breaking programming, to exciting new collaborations, and bringing together classical and folk music repertoire. We hope there’ll be something for everyone to enjoy, and we are particularly looking forward to bringing our music not just to the Paxton audiences but to the wider community in the borders too.

For more, visit

St Fin Barre’s Cathedral in Cork has announced the appointment of Robbie Carroll as Assistant Director of Music. Carroll will take up the post in September, taking over from current Assistant Director Phoebe Chow.

Carroll is from Galway and began studying organ under Ray O’Donnell at Galway Cathedral. He graduated with a first-class honours music degree from DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama in 2017. His organ tutors have included the late Una Russell, Colm Carey, Siobhán Kilkelly and Simon Harden.

During his time at DIT, he was also the organ scholar of St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, working with Titular Organist Prof. Gerard Gillen and director of the Palestrina Choir Blánaid Murphy.

Carroll is currently in his final semester of the Organ-Solo Master in the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne.

For more recent appointments, see below:

• Shannon McNamee Appointed Assistant Editor of The Journal of Music 
• New Executive Director of Birmingham Contemporary Music Group
Announcing the Participants of the Galway City and County Music Writer Mentoring Scheme
Karen Dervan Appointed to New Role with Music Generation
New Appointments in Music: UK and Ireland (February 2019)
New Appointments in Music (January 2019)

Published on 17 April 2019


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