|Saturday 21st April - 8pm|
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'Suspension' - A Journey through musical genres with Kenmare's finest
This concert, entitled 'Suspension', will feature four classically-trained performers; singer Grace Foley, harpist Tara Viscardi, pianist Kieran Finnegan and violinist Harry O Connor.
If you love music and enjoy and mix of musical genres and styles then this is the concert for you. All four of these performers have a background in Classical Music but also have a love for other styles of music. These performers have something very interesting in common; they have all won Killarney Rotary's Young Musician of the Year! This evening of music will include music by a diverse list of composers including Ennio Morricone, Bizet, Glen Hansard and Lana Del Ray.
Grace Foley is a member of the Crowley family of Dunkerron and, with her cousins owning Crowley's pub, it isn't hard to see that music runs in her family! Grace studied at the RIAM and has performed extensively throughout Ireland and on both local and national radio and television. Tara Viscardi attended Pobalscoil Inbhear Sceine where she was very much part of the wonderful music department directed by Veronica Whitehead. She credits a lot of her success to her upbringing on the beautiful Beara Peninsula. Kieran Finnegan of 'Finnegan's Jewellers' began his studies at the age of nine in Kenmare with Frederick Biesma and went on the study for a degree and masters at the Cork School of Music. Harry O Connor's family is originally from Dublin but they moved to Kenmare when Harry was just 6 years old. Harry's family also have Killarney connections so Kerry blood runs in his veins!
Killarney's Contralto Grace Foley is native of, and resides in, Killarney, County Kerry. Grace has studied singing since the age of 14 with some of Ireland's leading professionals, including the late Aine Nic Ghabhann, James Nelson of The Celtic Tenors and renowned Irish soprano Virginia Kerr.
Grace's love of her hometown has led her to base herself in Killarney where she also teaches singing. She has performed in venues across Ireland and has also sung on RTE television and radio, Lyric FM and local radio on numerous occasions. With years of performing experience under her belt Grace has developed her own unique style, creating Classical-Crossover covers of a variety of songs. Grace released her debut album, 'Home to Kerry', in December 2016 and plans to record a Classical Crossover EP in the near future. Grace most recently performed especially for Irish dress designer Don O Neill and his husband Pascal Guillermie as they received an award at the Brides of Kerry Industry Awards where Grace too was an award winner on the night.
In 2017 Grace organised and performed in 'An Irish Heart' around Kerry. Grace set up wedding music provider, 'Mosaic Music' January 2017 and is a regular on the wedding circuit.
Grace enjoys singing in her native town having sung at Culture night 2016 in Killarney, at the St. Patrick's Day Parade Killarney 2016, at the opening of Killarney House Gardens April 2016, at the Killarney Rotary Club's Celebration of International Women's Day 2016 and was the voice of an Ad for a Killarney Hotel March 2016.
Grace has a great passion for supporting the mental health organisation Aware and organised and performed in a fundraising concert for them in December 2015 and 2016.
During her years of study Grace received a number of accolades. She was a finalist in The Bernadette Greevy Competition for Young Singers 2010. She sang with Opera Ireland chorus 2010 and took a leading role in the RIAM's 2011 production of Puccini's 'Gianni Schicchi'. She has received a number of awards down through the years including the Gaiety Theatre Bursary for promising young singers in 2008, the Killarney Art's Council 'Eamonn Kelly Bursary' in 2007 and 2016 and was the winner of a Cork County Council Bursary 2004 and of Rotary's Young Musician of the Year 2004.
22 year old harpist Tara Viscardi hails from the Beara Peninsula, Co. Kerry and is currently in her final year on the Bachelor of Music in Performance programme at the DIT Conservatory of Music Drama, Dublin studying with Dr Clíona Doris, and previously with Denise Kelly McDonnell. Last year she also travelled regularly to study with Russian Harpist Irina Zingg at the Civica Scuola di Musica Claudio Abbado in Milan.
Tara was honoured to have been selected to perform on the Young Artist Masterclass Programme at the 13th World Harp Congress in Hong Kong in July 2017, in the class of Prof. Milda Agazarian, Professor of Harp at the Moscow Conservatory, supported by Culture Ireland. She has also participated and performed at the International Harp Masters Academy and Festival, Switzerland, the Catrin Finch Academy, Wales and the International Harp Workshop, Italy.
Tara has undertaken private and public masterclasses with many leading harpists and pedagogues including Sioned Williams, Anneleen Lenaerts, Catrin Finch, Eleanor Bennet, Milda Agazarian, Irina Zingg, Mara Galassi, Elizabeth Volpe-Bligh, Katerina Englichova, Laura Sofia-Caramellino, Luisa Prandina, Judy Loman, Gabriella Dall'Olio and Ieuan Jones.
Tara’s awards include the John Vallery Memorial Prize for the best performance by a string player at the 2016 Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year, the Feis Ceoil Senior Harp Cup 2015 and the Sligo Feis Ceoil Perpetual Harp Cup 2017, as well as first prizes in the Recital and Concerto Competitions at the DIT Conservatory. In April 2017 she appeared as soloist with the DIT Symphony Orchestra conducted by David Brophy. She was the overall winner of the Kerry Rotary Young Musician of the Year and was a finalist in the Rotary International Britain and Ireland Young Musician of the Year held in the UK in 2013.
Tara was the youngest finalist selected for the 2015 RDS Music Bursary and performed solo for the ESB Feis Ceoil Young Platform Series at the National Concert Hall. She has also been invited to perform for President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins in Áras an Uachtaráin on numerous occasions as well as for HRH The Prince of Wales in Hillsborough Castle.
Tara was selected for the 2017/18 and 2016/17 RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra Mentoring Scheme and has previously been principal harpist with the Ulster Youth Orchestra as well as the Irish Symphonic Wind Orchestra as well as being a past scholarship recipient of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland. She was also an apprentice harpist with the Clare Memory Orchestra (now the Irish Memory Orchestra) upon its inception.
A passionate chamber musician, Tara has been fortunate to receive invaluable coaching from members of the Vanbrugh Quartet during her time at the DIT Conservatory. She has performed extensively with her flute and harp duo partner, Meadhbh O’ Rourke, namely at the Boyle Arts Festival in July 2017, the Friends of The National Gallery of Ireland's annual Christmas concert, at the Conservatories and Physicians series at the Royal College of Physicians and at the lunchtime recital series in the Pepper Canister Church. The duo also performed at Tara’s solo concert at St Audoen’s Church in June 2017.
Also a passionate traditional musician, Tara has performed extensively with the DIT Harp Ensemble at home and abroad, as well as with the DIT Traditional Music Ensemble and is excited for upcoming performances with newly formed trio Préachán.
Tara looks forward to pursuing a Master of Music in Harp Performance at the Royal College of Music, London next year with Ieuan jones.
Kieran Finnegan is a twenty-five-year-old Irish pianist and harpsichordist who began his studies at the age of nine with Frederiek Biesma in his hometown, Kenmare. He completed his BMus in the CIT Cork School of Music (CSM), graduating with First Class Honours in 2014. While in the CSM, Kieran studied piano under the direction of Eleanor Malone and Jan Cap. In 2016, he completed the Masters in Music Performance in the CSM with first class honours. He spent the last year of his studies on Erasmus in Verona's Conservatorio di Musica F.E. Dall' Abaco, studying piano with Laura Cattaneo and harpsichord with Marco Vincenzi.
Kieran’s first competition success came back in 2007, winning the Rotary Club’s Young Musician of the Year competition in Killarney. Since then, his Baroque chamber music group, The Riva Quartet, won the RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartet Chamber Music Competition in 2013. He has been highly commended in the CSM Piano Accompaniment Competition and in the Advanced Recital Competition, and commended in the Senior Concerto Competition. He has also had success in Féile an tSamhraidh and Feis Maitiu Corcaigh.
Beginning his harpsichord studies with Pauline MacSweeney in 2010, Kieran is an avid continuo player, and has played in Vanbrugh Camerata alongside members of the The Vanbrugh Quartet. He also played in the Cork Baroque Orchestra at the Cork International Choral Festival 2015. As a member of Ensemble Dagda, Kieran continues to perform Baroque music all around the country. Dagda were featured in both the East Cork Early Music Festival and the West Cork Chamber Music Festival in 2017 and are set to return to Bantry for West Cork’s 2018 Festival.
Harry O’Connor, 18, is a violinist from Kenmare, Co. Kerry. Harry is in 1st year at the CIT Cork School of Music and is studying violin with Greg Ellis, formerly of the RTÉ Vanbrugh String Quartet. He plays in the CSM Symphony Orchestra and is a previous member of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland. He has also played with the SinfoNua orchestra, the Cork Youth Orchestra, and the Red Abbey String Quartet. Through his involvement with the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland, Harry has also had the opportunity to play with international professional orchestras such as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and the Hallé Youth Orchestra. He is also a member of Kerry’s own Scotia Ensemble. In March 2017, Harry became Killarney Rotary Club’s Young Musician of the Year 2017. He also composes and plays viola and piano.