Irish Baroque Orchestra
The Irish Baroque Orchestra is like no other group performing in Ireland today. Driven by the belief that the best things in life stand the test of time, the orchestra allows Irish audiences to experience the beauty of baroque music as it was intended to be heard. Under the inspirational artistic direction of Monica Huggett, each member of the orchestra continuously seeks to explore the playing techniques and performance styles of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and performs only on baroque instruments or modern replicas. The result is as vivid as a freshly restored oil painting: the colour, simmering tension, and highly charged emotion of this incredible music bursts to the surface, carrying the listener back 300 years to the fascinating sights and sounds of 18th Century Europe.
Although the IBO has its roots in the past, it is a dynamic and constantly evolving organisation with its sights firmly set on the future. Today, its exceptional musicians perform regularly throughout Ireland and abroad, and continue to receive widespread critical acclaim.
The IBO Chamber Soloists (IBOCS) is a formidable smaller ensemble comprising core players, and this permits further possibilities for vibrant and memorable performances of smaller projects. The IBO seeks to keep the tradition of baroque music alive for future generations, and so education and recording initiatives are a vital aspect of its work. From 2008 – 2013 the orchestra was ensemble in residence at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. In March 2013 the IBO became resident at the National Concert Hall Dublin where it works regularly with national and international students on baroque repertoire and playing techniques.
‘Flights of Fantasy’, a recording of early Italian chamber music was released in 2010 on the Avie label, and received a glowing international response. The disk was subsequently listed in the NEW YORKER’S most memorable moments in music for 2010: top recording of the year.
The Irish Baroque Orchestra is generously funded by the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon. It also receives financial support from Dublin City Council. The orchestra has its own collection of period instruments, purchased some years back with the assistance of an Arts Council capital grant and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Irish Association of Youth Orchestras
The Irish Association of Youth Orchestras is the national support and resource organisation for youth orchestras in Ireland.
Membership of the Association is open to all Youth Orchestras in Ireland, whether linked to a school, a school of music, a college or university, or to an independent or community-based organisation.
IAYO represents over 5,000 young musicians in 108 youth orchestras in Ireland and assists in the development of youth orchestras in all parts of the country.
The Irish Association of Youth Orchestras will promote interest in and foster the development of Youth Orchestras by the following means
- Encouraging co-operation between all organisations and groups involved in the development of Youth Orchestras.
- Creating a network for advice and information in relation to Youth Orchestras.
- Fostering excellence in the Youth Orchestra movement by facilitating training courses for Conductors, Teachers, and Students, access to libraries of music and sharing of unusual instruments, and by offering performance opportunities.
- Acting as a forum with an All Ireland and International dimension for all those involved in Youth Orchestras.
- Presenting excellence in the Youth Orchestra movement to a wider public through Youth Orchestra Festivals.
The Irish Association of Youth Orchestras was set up in Ennis in April 1994. It was incorporated as IAYO Ltd. in 1998, and became a registered charity in 2001. IAYO is a voluntary, non-profit-making Association, and a registered charity, supported by members fees and the generous donations of friends.
IAYO is grant-aided by The Arts Council and supported by Cork City Council. IAYO acknowledges the support of The Department of Tourism, Culture and Sport, The Arts Council and Music Network through the Music Capital Scheme 2010.
IAYO is a member of the European Orchestra Federation, The National Campaign for the Arts, the National Youth Council of Ireland, Volunteering Ireland and The Wheel.
Royal Irish Academy of Music
The Royal Irish Academy of Music is a home of musical excellence and dynamism, a place of teaching and learning which consistently achieves its objective of transmitting and maintaining the highest standards of performance and appreciation in all musical disciplines. Founded in 1848 the Academy is Ireland’s oldest musical institution.
As a national thirty-two county institution, the Academy embodies and reflects the traditions and heritage of Irish musicianship. The Teaching Staff includes many international and national prizewinners, members of the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra and many individuals whose names have become synonymous with music education in Ireland.
With the resources of such talents at its disposal, it is no wonder that the Academy’s students have been accepted for further study at the most prestigious music institutions around the world from the Juilliard School in New York to the Royal Academy of Music in London. Today, with recently established higher education courses, the Academy is in turn able to offer the finest Irish musical training to students from all corners of the world.
Homepage violin photo courtesy of Frances Marshall Photography.