Opinion & Book Reviews

Dublin Theatres Were Wrong to Cancel Russian Ballets
A cultural boycott of Russia has been emerging over the past two weeks following the invasion of Ukraine, but we have to reflect on how it is being implemented and what it hopes to achieve, writes Adrian Smith.
What is the Future for the National Symphony Orchestra?
The National Symphony Orchestra has now officially transferred from RTÉ to the National Concert Hall. What does it mean for the future of the group? Adrian Smith explores the question and suggests six ways that the NSO could have a positive start in its new home.
The Manipulation of Music Goes On
RTÉ recently broadcast a new documentary on the Irish folk revival, titled 'The Flourishing'. Toner Quinn reviews.
Where is the Deeper Conversation About Our Decimated Music Scene?
The latest restrictions on live music events leave many unanswered questions, writes Toner Quinn.
What If We Had More Music Hubs?
The new Beatles documentary 'Get Back' gives an incredible insight into the band's creative process, and provides an important lesson for our society today, writes Toner Quinn.
Persist to the Other Side
The fiddle-player Martin Hayes has recently published a memoir of his life in music, 'Shared Notes: A Musical Journey'. Toner Quinn reviews.
A Critical Moment for Choral Singing
Many choirs have not been able to function meaningfully since the pandemic began, but as they start to meet again now is the time to refresh and reflect on their aims, writes Geoffrey Spratt.
David Keenan's Sense of Place
Over the last decade, a number of remarkable artists have emerged from the music scene in Dundalk, David Keenan key among them. This month, he released his poetic second album, "What Then?". But what is it about this border town that generated a different type of music scene, and why now? Shannon McNamee writes about her home county and Keenan's unique voice.
We Have Celebrated Ó Riada Enough
On 25 September, the National Concert Hall, the Arts Council and RTÉ presented two tribute concerts to mark the fiftieth anniversary of Seán Ó Riada's death. Toner Quinn reviews.
No One is Talking About What Musicians Get Paid
The new report on the night-time economy has 36 recommendations, but it has an unfortunate blindspot, writes Toner Quinn.