07/03/18

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and Creative Ireland Programme to co-fund National Concert Hall and Sounding the Feminists New 5-Year Initiative to Promote Creative Work by Female Musicians worth €100,000

The Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan T.D., today (7 March 2018) the eve of International Women’s Day 2018, is happy to announce her Department’s support, under the Creative Ireland programme, of a new five-year partnership initiative to promote and commission work by female artists by the National Concert Hall (NCH) together with Sounding the Feminists (STF). The initiative is being supported with co-funding confirmed in the form of €20,000 a year over five years making this a significant contribution to promoting the work by female musicians and composers.

The new initiative comprising three strands will see the NCH and STF co-curate a new Chamber Music Programme as part of the NCH Chamber Music Series 2018. The series will seek to reveal the work of female composers and will highlight women who have been active but hidden as composers over the centuries, with reference to the context within which they were working. Also being announced is a new Commissioning Scheme to provide opportunity to established and emerging composers to have their work commissioned and performed at the NCH. This scheme will focus on the creation of cross-disciplinary and collaborative work in the NCH programme. Details of the scheme are to be announced in the coming months.  The third strand sees a New Programme Strand which sees both the NCH and STF focus on the diverse range of works of female artists working in today’s contemporary music space. It is envisaged the programme will see not only concerts but workshops, residencies and collaborations to further enhance creation and promotion of work by female artists. This new strand will be presented in 2019.   

Speaking today the Minister said:

“Ensuring equality across all areas of the arts requires not just fine words or putting in place good policies, it requires actions too. Tonight I am delighted that my Department, under the Creative Ireland Programme will partner with the National Concert Hall to co-fund a programme of new initiatives with Sounding the Feminists.”

Speaking of the initiative Simon Taylor, CEO of the National Concert Hall said:

“Today’s announcement, on the eve of International Women’s Day 2018, sees the NCH embark on a an ambitious curatorial and commissioning programme over the next five years in partnership with Sounding the Feminists. We are delighted to be working with Sounding the Feminists to develop and enhance opportunities for female composers and musicians in Ireland, across musical genre.”

The initiative is being announced at an event hosted by the NCH on the eve of International Women’s Day aimed at celebrating women in the arts. It features guest of honour Sabina Higgins with opening remarks by Josepha Madigan, TD Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and keynote speakers Dee Forbes Director General of RTÉ and Eleanor McEvoy, solo artist and Chairperson of IMRO.

The event also sees performances by singer/songwriter Loah, NCH Female Conductor Programme participant, composer and mezzo-soprano Siobhra Quinlan and renowned Irish organist and harpsichord player David Adams. The evening’s proceedings with close with a keynote performance by Irish, London based actress Lisa Dwan in a unique performance entitled ‘Not I, #MeToo and The Mind’s Eye’.

Further details of the NCH and Sounding Feminists 2018-2022 Initiative to be announced in the coming months.  

#pressforprogress #IWD2018

ENDS

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, 23 Kildare Street, Dublin , D02 TD30. Tel: 01 631 3800 / LoCall: 1890 383 000

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