From O’Carolan to Clarke: Over three centuries of music for string quartet written by Irish composers. Featuring Birds on a Wire String Quartet (Montreal-based all-female string quartet). Produced by Birds on a Wire String Quartet and the School of Canadian Irish Studies at Concordia University. This concert will expose listeners to another side of Irish music that they may not be familiar with, including a world premiere of a contemporary classical work, as well as familiar traditional melodies.
Birds on a Wire String Quartet is dedicated to stretching the boundaries of typical string quartet playing by fusing classical and non-classical styles of music. The quartet is made up of alumni of McGill’s Schulich School of Music, each with an impressive list of musical achievements. Its members are: Kate Bevan-Baker and Sarah Frank (violin), Amina Tébini (viola), Jane Chan (cello).
On the program will include a broad range of music, from melodies composed by harpist Turlough O’Carolan (1670-1738) to compositions and arrangements by living Irish composers and musicians. The Irish Session Suite, arranged by fiddler Kevin Burke and Cal Scot explores well-known traditional Irish tunes and re-works them in the classical string quartet formation. The suite is made up for four movements: hornpipe, jig, reel, and a slow air. Also on the program will be Ag Críost an Síol, an Irish hymn translating to “Christ’s is the seed,” beautifully set to music by Sean Ó Riada (1931-1971).
This concert will feature the world premiere of Magnificat, by Dublin-based composer Rhona Clarke (b. 1958). Familiar Irish melodies such as Carrickfergus, Be Thou My Vision, and Inisheer will also be included on the program.
A Traditional Irish music session will follow at Hurley’s Irish Pub (1225 rue Crescent, upstairs). All musicians are welcome to bring their instruments and participate.
This concert is made possible with the support of the School of Canadian Irish Studies at Concordia University, the St. Patrick’s Society of Montreal, the Siamsa School of Irish Music, and Hurley’s Irish Pub.
Where: Christ Church Cathedral, 685 rue Ste-Catherine (metro station McGill)
Cost: Free (voluntary contribution)
Organizer: Kate Bevan-Baker
Contact: 514 792-3754