music in fermanagh

A retrospective: 2015-2024

A lookback at previous Music in Fermanagh seasons.

From John O'Connor to Finghin Collins, Ruth McGinley to Carolyn Dobbin Music in Fermanagh has continued to present renowned classical musicians to enchanted Enniskillen audiences since 2015.

October 2023 - May 2024

  • Miram Roycroft cello
    Lance Coburn piano
    16 November, 2023

    Music in Fermanagh presented a much-anticipated return visit from Miriam Roycroft and Lance Coburn in November, 2023.

    The internationally acclaimed cellist and pianist, both professors at the Royal Irish Academy of Music treated a captivated Ardhowen audience to cello classics including Sergei Rachmaninoff's Prelude and Danse Orientale (Op.2 No's 1 &2) and Sonata for Cello and Piano (Op.19), Arnold Bax' Folk Tale, Ludwig van Beethoven's Sonata No. 1 for Cello and Piano in F major (Op.5 No.1) and Ralph Vaughan Williams Romanza from the Tuba Concerto.

    Performer Profile: Miriam Roycroft
    Performer Profile: Lance Coburn
  • 'America & Paris'

    Michael Collins clarinet
    Michael McHale piano
    19 October, 2023

    Music in Fermanagh were proud to present clarinetist Michael Collins to an Ardhowen audience in October where his "irresistible exuberance" (Gramophone Magazine) shone through. Belfast-born pianist Michael McHale collaborated on piano bringing his "understated panache" to the boards of The Ardhowen once again.

    America and Paris was the theme of this beautiful programme which featured much loved works of Debussy, Poulenc, Saint-Saëns and, of course, Bernstein.

    Performer profile | Michael Collins
    Performer Profile | Michael McHale
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October 2022 - September 2023

  • 'Songs & Divas'

    Carolyn Dobbin mezzo soprano
    Ruth McGinley
    13 June, 2023

    Two outstanding performers from Northern Ireland, Carolyn Dobbin and Ruth McGinley, joined Music in Fermanagh's 2023 season to present a varied programme of 'Songs & Divas' at Enniskillen's Ardhowen.

    Carrickfergus born mezzo-soprano Carolyn Dobbin, trained at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow and has sung major operatic roles at famous venues in Ireland, Britain and the rest of Europe. Derry-born Ruth McGinley studied at the Royal Academy and Royal College in London. She went on to perform as a soloist with the BBC Philharmonic and as a recitalist throughout Europe.

    Together they showed their exceptional talent with a programme of German Lied, Irish art songs, operatic arias and Howard Ferguson folk songs. A particular highlight was the Joan Trimble aria included in this gorgeous line up.

    Performer Profile: Carolyn Dobbin
    Performer Profile: Ruth McGinley
  • 'Harmonious Discord'

    Ashley Wass piano
    Richard Pierce lecture
    2 February, 2023

    Music in Fermanagh's first event of 2023, 'Harmonious Discord' at the Ardhowen Theatre was a wonderful collaboration between internationally acclaimed Ashley Wass and Enniskillen born architect (and the Music in Fermanagh Chairman) Richard Pierce.

    Wass already thrilled Ardhowen audiences with his amazing musical interpretation in 2016 where he curated a programme of piano works to mark the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. See more below!

    Richard Pierce, since his retirement as an architect, has been bringing enjoyment to Fermanagh audiences with his good-humoured, colourfully illustrated talks on all the arts. The evening was a wonderfully light-hearted combination of twentieth century musical milestones from Ashley and stories from Richard.

    Performer Profile: Ashely Wass
  • The Fidelio Trio & Cillian Vallely

    18 November, 2022

    Friday 18th November saw the fabulous Fidelio Trio return to Enniskillen to perform a programme of music inspired by the work of one of Ireland's foremost painters J.B. Vallely.

    Renowned uilleann piper (and son of the artist) Cillian Vallely collaborated with the trio beautiful creating magic on the boards of The Ardhowen for an enchanted audience.

    The quartet performed a suite of newly commissioned works with roots in Irish traditional music. Irish composers who specially created new music for this remarkable project included Linda Buckley, Niall Vallely and Rose Connolly and Shaun Davey, Neil Martin and Irene Buckley.

    The programme also featured composer David Fennessy’s "The blue-eyed lassie" from his recent Fidelio Trio commission and two works by the late Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin specially dedicated to the trio; (must be more) Crispy! and Fidelio Unsung.

    Performer Profile: The Fidelio Trio
    Performer Profile: Cillian Vallely
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October 2019 - September 2022

  • John O'Connor

    1 September, 2022

    Music in Fermanagh were thrilled to present the internationally acclaimed Professor John O'Connor (Shenandoah Conservatory) as our first concert after a long, unprecedented time apart from our audience.

    O'Conor - widely considered as Ireland's great classical pianist - celebrated his expertise with an all-Beethoven programme that included the much-loved Moonlight, Appassionata and Pathetique sonataos.

    For over 40 years John O'Connor has gathered wonderful reviews for his masterly playing and this evening exceeded all expectations. The outstanding performance was a major event in Fermanagh's musical calendar and was one that will not be quickly forgotten!

    Performer Profile: John O'Connor
  • The Fidelo Trio

    20 February, 2020

    The virtuosic and inspirational Fidelio Trio made up of Darragh Morgan (violin), Adi Tal (cello) and Mary Dullea (piano) performed four works in a remarkable programme than spanned 1827 - 2007!

    This second concert of Music in Fermanagh's 2022 season saw an exquisite rendition of Gabriel Fauré’s 1923 Piano Trio in D Minor (Op. 120) and Piers Hellawell’s 2007 ‘Etruscan Games’. Hellawell, Professor of Composition at Queen’s University Belfast, was present on the evening and gave a wonderful introduction to this remarkable piece.

    Joan Trimble's, Piano Trio - Phantasy (Op. 36), composed in 1940, showcased the wonderful talent of the County Fermanagh born composer and was a real highlight for audiences. The trio concluded the evening with a resounding performance of one of Franz Schubert’s final compositions Piano Trio in E Flat Major (Op. 100) dated November 1827.

    Performer Profile: The Fidelio Trio
  • The Trout Tour

    27 January, 2020

    The Vanbrugh
    Michael McHale piano
    Malachy Robinson double bass

    The Vanbrugh with guests, pianist Michael McHale and double-bassist Malachy Robinson, joined Music in Fermanagh with their Trout Tour. Performing Brahms C minor piano quartet and Schubert’s “Trout” quintet the five exceptional musicians thrilled The Ardhowen audiences on a wintery January evening.

    Brahms’ turbulent and dramatic C minor piano quartet tells the tale of Brahms’ love for Clara Schumann in one of the most powerful expressions of musical romanticism. The second part of the concert brought a complete contrast with Schubert’s Trout Quintet, a true favourite amongst both musicians and audiences for its elegance, charm and beauty.

    Performer Profile: The Vanbrugh
    Performer Profile: Michael McHale
    Performer Profile: Malachy Robinson
  • Finghin Collins

    17 October, 2019

    Music in Fermanagh were delighted to present internationally renowned pianist Finghin Collins to Enniskillen to thrill a captivated audience with an evening of spectacular playing.

    The charismatic musician performed Mozart's best-known piano works Sonata in A Major, 'Alla Turca' composed in 1783 when Turkish music was much in vogue.

    Collins also thrilled audiences with Schubert's Sonata in A Major D.959 and extracts from the Ros Tapestry Suite, music commissioned by the New Ross Piano Festival, founded by artistic director Collins himself! Music in Fermanagh look forward to welcoming Finghin again for another evening of masterful piano playing in the future.

    Performer Profile: Finghin Collins
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October 2018 - September 2019

  • Miriam Roycroft (cello) & Lance Coburn (piano)

    16 May 2019

    Music in Fermanagh, in partnership with The National Trust, presented another wonderful evening of classical music in the magnificent Grand Hall of the Castle Coole. The beautiful space was brought to life by two outstanding musicians, cellist Miriam Roycroft and pianist Lance Coburn.

    Concert goers relaxed in the perfect setting for a late Spring concert while listening to Four Nocturnes by Bohemian-born Bohuslav Martinu (1890-1959), Beethoven’s Sonata in A major (Op.69), Suite Popular Espanola by Spanish composer Manuel de Falla (1876-1946) and Cello Sonata in G minor (Op.65) by Frederic Chopin. The evening concluded with refreshments and reminiscing by a roaring Castle Coole fire - a perfect conclusion to a wonderful evening.

    Performer Profile: Miriam Roycroft
    Performer Profile: Lance Coburn
  • Chamber Philharmonic of Europe orchestra with Cyrill Gussaroff (trumpet)

    24 March, 2019

    For our opening concert of 2019 Music in Fermanagh was proud to present the Chamber Philharmonic of Europe Orchestra at Enniskillen's Ardhowen Theatre.

    Founded in 2006 and based in Cologne, the 'Chamber Philharmonic of Europe' engages talented young performers from 18 European countries to produce music of the highest quality. They were joined by internationally acclaimed Russian trumpeter Cyrill Gussaroff in Ponchielli's Concerto in F Major.

    The programme also included music by Corelli, Suk, Bach, Rachmaninoff and Holst. An historic evening for Classical music in County Fermanagh - one an enthralled Music in Fermanagh audience were glad not to have missed!

    Performer Profile: Chamber Philharmonic of Europe
    Performed Profile: Cyrill Gussaroff
  • Adrian Mantu (cello) & Sinziana Mircea (piano)

    1 December, 2018

    Music in Fermanagh's final concert of 2018 was a wonderful partnership with the National Trust.

    The ever-magnificent Grand Hall at Castle Coole was the backdrop to a wonderful musical programme curated by cellist Adrian Mantu and pianist Sinziana Mircea. Dr. Adrian Mantu, founding cellist from the ConTempo Quartet, is already much appreciated by Fermanagh audiences, while Romanian pianist Sinziana Mircea is a winner of the prestigious Young Steinway Prize.

    Concert-goes were delighted by music for piano and cello by Beethoven, Paganini, Bartok, Sollima, Albenitz, Piazzolla, Saint-Saëns, Jianu and Dimitrescu. A beautiful reception was held after the recital where the audiences enjoyed refreshments in the stunning surroundings of the late-18th-century neo-classical Castle Coole.

    Performer Profile: Adrian Mantu
    Performer Profile: Sinziana Mircea
  • Hugh Tinney

    21 November, 2018

    Music in Fermanagh's second autumn recital of 2018 was a thrilling performance by internationally acclaimed Irish pianist Hugh Tinney. The concert was part of Hugh’s 60th birthday celebratory tour of Ireland.

    Tinney delighted an rapturous Ardhowen audience with a selection of works by Beethoven, Ian Wilson, Thomas Adès, Chopin and Schubert.

    Born in Dublin in 1958, Hugh first came to international recognition by winning first prize in two international competitions, the 1983 Pozzoli in Italy and the 1984 Paloma O’Shea in Spain and some years later made his debut at the BBC Proms playing Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. His repertoire includes more than sixty concertos.

    Performer Profile: Hugh Tinney
  • Kristan Swain & Máire Caroll

    17 October, 2018

    Our autumn season commenced with a wonderful concert by Enniskillen-born flautist Kristan Swain, flautist, accompanied by international concert pianist Máire Carroll.

    Swain and Carroll both began their musical studies at a young age – eight and four respectively – and studied with distinguished musicians on the island of Ireland before continuing their professional training at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

    The remarkably talented young duo performed works by Berkeley, Hindemith, Hamilton Harty, Philip Hammond, Mouquet, Gaubert, Demersseman, Debussy, Hüe and Fauré to an enchanted Enniskillen audience.

    Performer Profile: Kristan Swain
    Performer Profile: Máire Carroll
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October 2017 - September 2018

  • Andrew Irwin & Martyn Parkes

    11 April, 2018

    Enniskillen-born rising star tenor Andrew Irwin delighted a hometown audience at The Ardhowen.

    Along with remarkable pianist Martyn Parkes of Manchester's Chetham’s School of Music, Andrew performed Franz Schubert’s famous (and perhaps most loved) song cycle ‘Die Schöne Müllerin’.

    ‘Die Schöne Müllerin’, Schubert's first song cycle tells of a young apprentice miller who falls in love with his master’s daughter. The first eleven of the twenty-song work show that he believes his love is returned. He soon realises that he has lost her to the green-jacketed forester, and in despair throws himself into the brook to which he has constantly confided his hopes and fears.

    Performer Profile: Andrew Irwin
    Performer Profile: Martyn Parkes
  • The Vanbrugh + Michael McHale

    5 February, 2018

    The much-loved Vanbrugh along with pianist Michael McHale explored the rich tapestry of piano quartets in our late winter concert.

    The evening opened with Mozart's Piano Quartet No. 1 in G minor, a masterpiece that showcases his unparalleled ability to blend elegance with emotional depth. The haunting melodies and intricate interplay between piano, violin, viola, and cello set the stage for an evening of musical brilliance.

    The foursome then delved into the Romantic era with Charles Stanford's Piano Quartet No. 1 in F Major. This piece exuded warmth and lyricism, transporting the audience to a world of lush harmonies and expressive melodies.

    This beautiful concert concluded with Czech Master Antonín Dvořák's Piano Quartet No. 1 in D Major (Op. 23) featuring folk-like motifs and rhythmic vitality. The quartet's exuberant energy and bold dynamics showcased Dvorak's brilliance.

    Performer Profile: The Vanbrugh
    Performer Profile: Michael McHale
  • Katherine Hunka (violin) & Finghin Collins (piano) 

    1 December, 2017

    Music in Fermanagh welcomed music enthusiasts to a diverse evening musical brilliance presented by internationally acclaimed artists Katherine Hunka and Finghin Collins.

    The programme commenced with Beethoven's Sonata in A minor, a bold and dramatic work that showcases the composer's prowess in crafting powerful and emotionally charged compositions and the mastery of duo Hunka and Collins. Ian Wilson's 'from the Book of Longing' followed this opening sonata. Wilson's piece, with its modern language and evocative textures, invited the audience to reflect on the depths of human emotion and the nuances of longing.

    Janáĉek's Sonata for Violin and Piano, a striking piece that captures the composer's unique voice and folk-inspired rhythms showcased the composer's storytelling brilliance. Hunka and Collins concluded a wonderful performance with ever-popular Sonata in G major by Brahms that weaved together lush harmonies and poignant melodies.

    Performer Profile: Katherine Hunka
    Performer Profile: Finghin Collins
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October 2016 - September 2017

  • ConTempo

    31 May, 2017

    Music in Fermanagh were delighted to present acclaimed quartet ConTempo to The Ardhowen.

    The musical journey began with Haydn's String Quartet in G major, (Op 76) - a testament to the Classical era's elegance and wit.

    The foursome then premiered John McLachlan's Glad it was the Sun. This work takes its title from a poem Lila’s Potatoes by celebrated writer Leland Bardwell, who was the composer’s mother and was a true highlight of the evening. McLachlan's work, with its modern language and intricate textures, invited listeners to explore the intersections of tradition and innovation.

    The programme concluded with Debussy's String Quartet in G minor (L. 85, Op. 10), a groundbreaking composition that epitomises the Impressionist movement. Debussy's ethereal harmonies and evocative atmospheres painted a vivid sonic canvas, immersing the audience in a world of colour and emotion.

    Performer Profile: ConTempo
  • Musici Ireland

    28 March, 2017

  • The Vanbrugh

    5 February, 2017

    Internationally acclaimed quartet The Vanbrugh along with cellist William Butt treated a welcoming Music in Fermanagh audience to a matinee performance at The Ardhowen.

    The programme featured two works of emotional depth and sonic richness. The quintet opened the recital with Schubert's C Major Quintet - an epitome of the composer's melodic genius and introspective lyricism.

    Following the great Schubert work the quintet delved into the emotive landscapes of Barber's Adagio. This iconic piece, originally part of his String Quartet No. 1, unfolds with aching beauty and mournful intensity. Barber's Adagio is a timeless exploration of sorrow and catharsis and was performed adeptly by this group of remarkable artists.

    Performer Profile: The Vanbrugh
    Performer Profile: William Butt
  • Esposito Quartet

    18 September, 2017

    The Esposito Quartet comprises four musicians with a combined bounty of experience as orchestra leaders, principals, professors, recital and recording artists, whose common love of the quartet treasury drove them in 2010 to ignore it no longer and seek each other out. Their name reflects their admiration for Michele Esposito, pianist and composer, who for forty years from 1888 was the initiator for much of the chamber music making in Dublin through the establishment of The Royal Dublin Society.  They have enjoyed concert tours of Ireland with the support of Arts Council Touring Awards and with generous support from the National Quartet Foundation they have been fortunate to have commissioned and premiered new works by Donnacha Dennehy and Sebastian Adams. The Espositos have also enjoyed collaborating with many other artists such as Hugh Tinney, Redmond O'Toole and Gareth Lubbe.

    Performer Profile: Esposito Quartet
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October 2016 - September 2017

  • Ashley Wass

    16 October, 2016

    Music in Fermanagh were thrilled to welcome internationally acclaimed English pianist, Ashley Wass, to The Ardhowen for a matinee performance.

    To mark the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare, Ashley treated a captivated audience to a magnificent afternoon of musical storytelling.

    The programme unfolded with Beethoven's Sonata in D minor (Op. 31/2) "Tempest," a storm of emotions that captivated the audience with its dramatic intensity. Smetana's "Macbeth and the Witches" transported us into the mystical world of Shakespearean tragedy, as the music vividly depicted the play's supernatural elements.

    Liszt's Concert Paraphrase on Mendelssohn's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' enchanted the audience, blending Wass' virtuosity with the magical themes of Shakespeare's comedy.

    The recital reached a crescendo with Prokofiev's 10 Pieces from "Romeo and Juliet," (Op. 75), where the composer's genius brought the timeless love story to life through evocative melodies and rhythmic dynamism.

    Performer Profile: Ashely Wass

  • The Vanbrugh String Quartet

    5 June, 2016

    Music in Fermanagh present the Vanbrugh Quartet at the Ardhowen, they will play three Beethoven quartets, one each from the early years, the middle years and a late one. There will be a short explanation before each one to explain its place in the development of Beethoven as an individual voice.

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