Ortús Chamber Music Festival enters third year in 2018

08/12/17 - Now in its third year, Ortús Chamber Music Festival is an annual chamber music festival in Cork City and county. The 2018 festival will run from February 23rd-25th in Cork City, Kinsale and Cobh. Artistic Directors, EUYO member and cellist Sinéad O'Halloran & violinist Mairead Hickey will be joined by Irish musicians Fiona Kelly (EUYO) flute, Ellen Jansson piano, Brendan Garde violin & Cian Ó Dúill (EUYO) viola.  Two young international musicians will also take part, Colombian cellist Santiago Canon Valencia (3rd prize winner at the 2017 Queen Elisabeth Competition) & French violinist Yoan Brakha. Repertoire will include masterpieces by Mozart, Dvorak, Shostakovich, Brahms and Klein, alongside some lesser known gems by Couperin, Boccherini & Ginastera.

Ortús provides an opportunity for the wider community to discover, embrace & celebrate the strong musical talent produced in Ireland. A close partnership with the Cork ETB School of Music had led to masterclasses, school workshops & pop-up concerts in the community. Ortús also seeks to perform in venues such as closed HSE facilities to work towards inclusion.

The Festival emerged out of a deep seated desire on the part of Sinead O'Halloran & Mairead Hickey to create a collaborative performance platform for chamber music in Ireland for the finest young musicians based both at home and abroad. The 2016 & 2017 festivals successfully provided performance opportunities for the two Artistic Directors and for several EUYO members and alumni: Siobhán Doyle (EUYO), Martin Moriarty (EUYO) Ed Creedon (EUYO) Chris Ellis, Kelley Lonergan, Phoebe White, Ruth Gibson, Brian O'Kane and Gary Beecher.

Ortús is also committed to experimenting with new, exciting and interactive music, involving audience participation where possible. We have commissioned Ian Wilson to compose a new work for the 2018 Festival, "Denier" for Flute Quintet.  This commitment to new works is an integral part of the programming for Ortús as is evidenced by the commission in 2016 of the widely acclaimed 'Pause' by Sam Perkin in commemoration of the 1916 Rising and by the performance of new works by Sebastian Adams and Sinead Finegan in 2017.

Both Mairéad & Sinéad developed their love of chamber music during their early musical education in Cork. They are dedicated to leaving a tangible legacy in their locality through this project. Ortús is committed to maximising engagement with their audiences and enhancing the experience of those who attend.The infectious enthusiam and passion for chamber music shown by these young musicians is key to audience development and audience feedback has been extremely positive in this respect.

Ortús continues to be a celebration of the high quality of artistic excellence created in Ireland. It successfully showcases the talent, commitment, professional development and creativity in our young musicians and composers and provides an annual opportunity to bring this talent to the local community, particularly to those areas not as well served for live chamber music.

Click here to see the programme for 2018.