Enthralling evening - Irish Heritage bursary winners put on captivating concert

Enthralling evening - Irish Heritage bursary winners put on captivating concert

THE Irish Heritage organisation recently enjoyed a return to live performance events.

Its first concert since the Covid-19 lockdown was lifted took place at the Royal Over-Seas League in London's St James’s.

The event featured performances from the organisation’s bursary winners of 2020/21 who would have played last year but were unable to due to Covid-19 restrictions.

l-r Mary Connolly, Trustee at Irish Heritage, Jim Kirby, Director of the Management Committee at Irish Heritage and Audrey McKenna, Artistic Director at Irish Heritage

Mollie Wrafter from Co. Offaly, who won her bursary for violin, played, among other pieces, a memorable rendition of Sean O’Riada’s Mna ha hEireann.

She was followed by Justine Gormley from Belfast playing Bach and Rachmaninoff on piano. Aran O’Grady, from Bray in Co. Wicklow, had the premiere of his composition Zeitgeist, for which he won the composer’s bursary.

As an addition to the bursary performers, previous bursary winner on flute, Amy Gillen was joined by Justine Gormley to play two beautiful melodies of Phil Coulter, receiving a standing ovation.

The final part of the night was a wonderfully uplifting session, taking the night out on a high, when Tiffany Qiu from Dundalk played works of Debussy and List on the piano which had the audience enthralled.

The evening was produced by Audrey McKenna, a well-known concert pianist and conductor from Dublin, who is now artistic director at Irish Heritage.

Some of the bursary winners with Audrey McKenna, artistic director and producer of the show

“There was no doubting why all these young Irish musicians had qualified for their bursaries” said Jim Kirby, director of Irish Heritage’s management committee.

“Irish Heritage is very proud of its achievements in this way, helping students at music colleges here in the UK and in Ireland with their ambitions for the future,” he added.

This month Irish Heritage will audition the next group of bursary hopefuls at the Wigmore Hall in London’s West End.

And on December 10 the organisation’s very popular, annual Christmas-by-Candlelight Concert will take place at St George’s Church in London’s Hanover Square.

Further information and tickets for all future events can be found here.