Cork International Choral Festival Opening Gala Concert
‘Music of the Baroque’ with Madrigal ’75 and Cork Baroque Orchestra
Wednesday 29th April, 8pm
Cork City Hall

Tickets: €30/€25/€15

Cork Baroque Orchestra are thrilled to be collaborating with vocal ensemble Madrigal ’75 in the Opening Gala of the Cork International Choral Festival. The concert celebrates the 40th Anniversary of the founding of Cork’s internationally renowned Madrigal ’75 (Director James Taylor). Madrigal ’75 accompanied by the Cork Baroque Orchestra will present vocal and instrumental music from the Baroque and feature works by Handel, Telemann, Purcell, Monteverdi with the well-known Gloria by Vivaldi providing a popular opening to the Festival. Concert features acclaimed soloists Deirdre Moynihan (soprano) and Bridget Knowles (alto)


Gloria RV589 – Antonio Vivaldi (1678 -1741)
Violin Concerto in A major ‘Die Relinge’ TWV51: A4– Georg Philip Telemann (1681-1767)
Beatus vir SV268– Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

– Interval –

Chacony in G minor Z.730
If music be the food of love Z.379C
Evening hymn Z.193
Chaconne in C major Z.629 – Henry Purcell (1659-1695)
Dixit Dominus HWV232 – Georg Friedrich Händel (1685-1759)



Further information on the Cork International Choral Festival website



Deirdre Moynihan’s CD of Vivaldi Cantatas was released by Naxos in 2014 to widespread critical acclaim. Her voice was described as “unfailingly beautiful in tone” (International Record Review) and “perfectly suited to baroque music” (Music Web International). A second 2014 release, ‘From The Olive Tree’, with classical guitarist Alec O’ Leary, received praise for the  “striking clarity” of Deirdre’s vocal performance. She has sung as a soloist with, amongst others, the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Irish Baroque Orchestra, Irish Chamber Orchestra, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and Crash Ensemble. 2014 included performances at Kilkenny Arts Festival, Ardee Baroque and a series of concerts in Japan. 2015 includes performances with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra & RTÉ ConTempo quartet in addition to a recital at KBC Great Music in Irish Houses Festival.  Deirdre holds an MA in Vocal Performance from the Cork School of Music. She is also the Programmes Manager for Music Network.


Bridget Knowles

Mezzo-soprano Bridget Knowles studied at UCC, Cork School of Music, Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester and the National Opera Studio, London. She has appeared as soloist on many top national and international stages including the  National Concert Hall, Dublin; the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London and the Händel-Halle, Leipzig. She has performed with Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Welsh National Opera, the National Symphony Orchestra, and the Irish Baroque Orchestra; and has worked with conductors such as Charles Mackerras, William Christie, Alessandro Anissimov and Prionnsias O’Duinn. She is a lecturer in the Department of Creative and Performing Arts, WIT.



Madrigal ‘75 is a vocal ensemble based in Cork City. Founded in 1975 by university students, the choir now comprises of a diverse combination of singers from all walks of life. Madrigal ‘75 has developed a reputation as a vocal ensemble of great skill and beauty, performing repertoire from the 14th century to contemporary choral works, both sacred and secular, including first performances of new commissions. In 2005 Madrigal ‘75 was a prominent participant in the Cork European Capital of Culture events and toured France as cultural ambassadors for the city. Madrigal ‘75 is also the winner of the Carols for Christmas 2006 and 2012 competitions on RTE Lyric FM. Other successes include Best Choir at the Montreux Festival, several Best Performances and First Prize awards at successive Cork International Choral Festivals, and the Irish Choir of the Year award. In 2013, Madrigal ‘75 returned to Montreux and was the highest placed choir in the mixed-voice category as well as being a Grand Prix Finalist. In its 40 year history, the choir has performed with several of Ireland’s leading ensembles, including the RTE Vanbrugh String Quartet and the Orchestra of St Cecilia. In 2008 and 2011, the choir presented the closing and opening concerts respectively of the East Cork Early Music Festival, followed by the highlight of 2014 when the choir was invited to present the atmospheric Evocations concert for the Cork International Choral Festival. 2015 marks the 40th anniversary of the founding of Madrigal ‘75, and to celebrate this occasion, the choir has a busy year of concerts planned as well as a tour to Europe later in the year. The choir is delighted to be performing the opening Concert of the 2015 Cork International Choral Festival. Since January 2007, Madrigal ‘75 has been directed by James Taylor, organist and harpsichordist, who, having held posts in the UK, New Zealand and Canada now lectures at CIT Cork School of Music. James has performed concerts in Canada and the USA, across Europe and New Zealand as well as participating in numerous television and radio broadcasts as a soloist and accompanist. His latest project is a recording of organ works on the newly restored organ in St. Fin Barre’s Cathedral. The vocal ensemble Madrigal ‘75, together with Barry Douglas (piano), Alex Petcu-Colan (percussion), and the Chiral Quartet, are Artistsin- Residence to the CIT Cork School of Music.

Madrigal ‘75:

Sopranos: Aiveen Kearney, Deirdre Long, Eileen McMahon, Gemma Magner, Lorna Moore, Muirgen O’Mahony, Emma Power, Mary Shorten, Catalina Suarez, Veronica Tadman

Altos:Catherine Frost, Hilary Lennon, Claire McSweeney, Áine Ní Shé, Amy O’Connell

Tenors: Conor Brassil, Brian Callinan, Tim Fouhy, Aonghus Joyce, Mark Milford, Tomás Ó Drisceoil

Basses: Gordon Garde, Ben Jacob, Rob Kennedy, Frank McCann, Fearghal O’Connor, Robbie Pender


East Cork Early Music Festival 2014

On the Friday 10th October, 2015, the Cork Baroque Orchestra returned to the Curtis Auditorium of the Cork School of Music for its second concert under the East Cork Early Music Festival. The orchestra welcomed the brilliant Elizabeth Wallfisch as guest director and soloist in a programme including the wonderful Four Seasons by Antonio Vivaldi, as well as works by Telemann and Schemelzer. The concert also saw the premiere of a brand new work for baroque strings, by Clonakilty-based composer Justin Grounds, who was the winner of the East Cork Early Music Festival’s composition competition for 2014, with his piece Passacaglia Apis. The Irish Examiner commented that the concert ‘was memorable for the energy, sense of phrasing, dynamic contrasts and brilliance of violinist Elizabeth Wallfisch’.


G.P.H. Telemann – Overture-Suite TWV 55:D14
Johann Schmelzer – Lamento sopra la morte di Ferdinando III
Justin Grounds – Passacaglia Apis
Antonio Vivaldi – The Four Seasons

The Orchestra 2014

Director/Soloist: Elizabeth Wallfisch, baroque violin

Violins                                                 Violas

Aoife Ni Dhurnin                                  Lisa Dowdall
Claire Fahy                                          Caitriona O’Mahony
Aine O’Halloran
Sarah Walsh                                        Cellos
Tom Crowley                                       Aoife Nic Athlaoich
Leonie Curtin                                       Eimear Reidy
Elaine Sexton
Aingela de Búrca                                 Violone
Laure Giersch                                      Sarah Groser

Harpsichord                                        Theorbo/guitar
James Taylor                                         Nina Treadwell


 The Cork Baroque Orchestra is delighted to welcome Elizabeth Wallfisch as guest director and soloist for the East Cork Early Music Festival 2014.


Renowned not only as a prominent interpreter of 17th, 18th and 19th century violin music, Elizabeth Wallfisch is also a Concertmaster and Music Director. Elizabeth Wallfisch has been a Guest Director/Leader on the violin with many of the world’s orchestras, both ‘modern’ and ‘period instrument’, for example: Tafelmusik – Canada, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Philharmonia Baroque – Berkeley, Vancouver and Melbourne Symphony orchestras, and many others, and of course Concertmaster of the Carmel Bach Festival orchestra for 18 years.
Her impressive, and extensive discography offers a window onto her expansive musical world from the Early to Late Baroque Italian, French German, Bohemian and English violinist-composers such as Cima, Marini, Uccellini, Vivaldi, Corelli, Bach, Biber, Schmelzer, Walther, Leclair, Francoeur, Locatelli, Tartini, Purcell, Playford, and the Classical and early Romantic composers from Mozart, Thomas Linley the Younger, James Shaw, James Brooks, to Kreutzer, Rode, Spohr, Viotti and Schubert.
IN 2007, and 2013 Elizabeth had the great privilege to be Music Director of National Music Camp Australia, under the Australian Youth Orchestra Umbrella
She has recently completed a recording of the Beethoven piano and violin sonatas for Nimbus records.
She is a member of the outstanding Oberlin Fortepiano Trio.
Elizabeth is Artistic Director of The Wallfisch Band, a unique international period-instrument orchestra in which highly talented younger players, either still studying or on the threshold of their careers, play alongside Elizabeth and her ‘seasoned’ colleagues-all players at the very top of the profession.


Cork Baroque Orchestra Debut Concert

The Cork Baroque Orchestra made its very well-received debut as part of the East Cork Early Music Festival 2013, under the direction of Finnish harpsichordist Aapo Hakkinen, and featuring soloists Ioana Petcu-Colan, Leonie Curtin, Marja Gaynor and Elaine Sexton.

Cork School of Music Curtis Auditorium

11th October 2013, 8pm


Arcangelo Corelli – Concerto Grosso in F Op. 6, No 12.
Georg Friedric Handel – Concerto Grosso in b Op. 6. No. 12
Johann Sebastian Bach – Harpsichord Concerto in D Major BWV 1054
Arcangelo Corelli – Concerto Grosso in D Op. 6, No 4.
George Muffat – Passcaglia from Sonata No. 5 in G
Antonio Vivaldi – Concerto in b for 4 violins, strings and basso continuo

The Orchestra 2013

Director/Harpsichord: Aapo Hakkinen

Violins                                                 Violas

Ioana Petcu-Colan                              Aidan McWatt
Marja Gaynor                                      Greg Campbell
Aine O’Halloran
Aoife Ni Dhornain                                Cellos
Leonie Curtin                                       Eimear Reidy
Elaine Sexton                                       Ilse de Ziah
Aingeala de Burca                               
Caitriona O’Mahony                             Violone
                                                             Sarah Groser                      




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