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Traditional and classical on menu from West Ocean String Quartet

Judy Murphy

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The West Ocean String Quartet, made up of Seamus McGuire and Niamh Crowley on violin, Ken Rice on viola and Neil Martin on cello, will perform in the Aula Maxima at NUI Galway on Thursday, April 18 at 8pm. The concert, which is in partnership with NUI Galway College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, marks the launch of their new album, An Indigo Sky. Proceeds on the night will go toward Voluntary Services Abroad (VSA).

An Indigo Sky takes its title from Neil Martin’s four-movement suite which forms the core of the album. This was commissioned in memory of Joseph Browne, a former medical student of NUI Galway from Knockmeal on the Clare/Galway border who died tragically in 2006.

In addition to this newly-composed piece and traditional music the album – which received a five-star review from the Irish Times – also features work by Turlough O’Carolan and Thomas Moore.

The West Ocean String Quartet first came into being in 1999 and since then their talent and extensive repertoire which spans the gamut from traditional to classical, has won them global praise. They have collaborated with many leading artists, both on stage and in studio, including Christy Moore, Matt Molloy, Maighréad Ní Dhomhnaill, Mary Black, Liam O’Flynn and Brian Kennedy.

Their debut CD, Unwrapping Dreams was launched in 2004 to acclaim in Ireland and abroad, winning the award for Best Newcomers Album in Chicago’s American Live Ireland Awards that year. A BBC television documentary on the quartet followed.

Since then they have released The Guiding Moon (2006) featuring the Chieftains’ flute player Matt Molloy, and Ae Fond Kiss (2009) with special guest Maighréad Ní Dhomhnaill.

The West Ocean String Quartet have enjoyed sell-out performances in Dublin’s National Concert Hall, Belfast’s Waterfront Hall and Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall. Their music has taken them to USA and France and they can claim that their appeal is truly universal as their three CDs were played aboard the International Space Station in 2011.

Tickets for their Aula show, which will contain material from all four of their albums, are €20, students €15. These are available from the Galway Arts Centre on Dominic Street, from the School of Medicine at NUIG, from Socs Box at NUIG, or at the door.

CITY TRIBUNE

Sunday evening concert offers All the Pleasures

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Sunday evening’s concert will be performed by the Resurgam Choir and Irish Baroque Orchestra (pictured), under director Peter Whelan.

Music by George Frederic Handel and Henry Purcell as well as a world premiere by Irish composer Rhona Clarke will feature in Resounding Landscapes, a concert being presented by Music for Galway in association with Galway 2020 this Sunday, November 22. It will be live-streamed from the city’s St Nicholas’ Church, starting at 7pm.

It’s the second concert in the Abendmusik (Evening Music) series of vocal and choral performances, which forms part of Music for Galway’s programme for the European Capital of Culture project.

Sunday’s event will feature Welcome to all the Pleasures by the 17th century composer, Henry Purcell with text by Cristopher Fishburn; the world premiere of Rhona Clarke’s O Vis Aeternitatis – based on writings by the 12th century mystic, Hildegard of Bingen; and Handel’s Dixit Dominus.

The programme will be performed by the Resurgam Choir and Irish Baroque Orchestra (IBO), under director Peter Whelan, who is director of the IBO.

Creator of the Abendmusik Sunday evening concert series, Mark Duley feels that “in our current circumstance, it is good to be reminded by Fishburn in his text that ‘in music, we find relief from sorrow and grief’. And we can salute the venerable building of St Nicholas’ Church where for 700 years music has resounded and prayer has been valid.”

Meanwhile, a scheduled online production of the community opera, Paper Boat, which Music for Galway commissioned to celebrate the 700th anniversary of St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church, has been postponed.

Paper Boat is central to Music for Galway’s programme for Galway 2020 and before Covid-19 restrictions, there had been plans for a major live production of the site-specific composition in St Nicholas’ last June.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Chance to experience Fregoli’s Cross Street as the drama unfolds

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Enid trying to make sense of her life in 'Cross Street.

Fregoli Theatre Company will present a work-in-progress performance of its forthcoming play, Cross Street, on Saturday, November 28.

This virtual reading of their new comedy, written by the company’s co-founder Jarlath Tivnan, offers hints of horror while exploring mental health issues, according to its director Eimear Finan.

The story centres on Enid who’s searching for a new home and finds a place on Cross Street, one of Galway’s most happening spots.

However, she enters a space that’s is already populated by some serious creatures of habit. When Enid’s arrival threatens to disrupt well-worn routines, a house meeting is called to re-establish order. But on this stormy night, other events take over.

Cross Street explores how mental issues can grow and manifest when left to fester, says Eimear. Each of the housemates has an issue: these range from grief, guilt, alcoholism, eating disorders, neglect, self-harm and self-doubt. And each person isolates from anyone who might either interfere or help.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Resourceful Emma gets in step with Zoom during pandemic

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Connemara's heritage features strongly in Emma's sean-nós dance classes and in her Facebook videos.

If you fancy learning sean-nós dancing, now is your chance as renowned dancer Emma O’Sullivan is using technology to put her students through their paces – at home and abroad.

In normal times, the All-Ireland champion can be seen dancing on the junction of Mainguard Street and Cross Street in Galway City.

Emma, from Derryinver, Letterfrack, is a popular figure and videos of her performances have been shared by over 20 million viewers worldwide. Her skills as a sean-nós dance teacher mean she’s in constant demand for classes among children and adults as at home and abroad.

But like so many in the performing arts sector, Emma’s livelihood has been severely affected by the pandemic.

After her regular classes were cancelled in March when lockdown began, she decided to try something new. She complied a 30-minute introductory sean-nós dancing tutorial video, which she uploaded to YouTube.  The feedback was so good, she moved on to classes via Zoom – which her students have since nicknamed ‘zoom-nós’.

This hasn’t been without its challenges, she says.

“There’s so much more to consider. Lighting and audio were a bit difficult, because while Zoom is fine for just chatting, suddenly I needed to talk and play music too.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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