County Antrim composer Elaine Agnew studied music at Queen’s University Belfast and followed with postgraduate studies at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Her many works have been performed and commissioned worldwide by artists such as the Škampa Quartet, the RTÉ National Symphony and Concert Orchestras, Concorde, the Scottish and Irish Chamber Orchestras, pianists Isabelle O’Connell and Angela Hewitt and and Chamber Choir Ireland. Her music has featured at many major festivals including the BBC London Proms, London BMIC Cutting Edge, the Spitalfields and Slovenian Unicum Festival and in many world-class venues: the Carnegie and Wigmore Halls and the Konzerthaus Berlin.
In 2012 her BBC Proms Commission Dark Hedges was premiered by the Ulster Youth Orchestra, the Ulster Orchestra and flautist Sir James Galway in London’s Royal Albert Hall, one reviewer describing it as ‘compelling from beginning to end’. Elaine was appointed as the first RTÉ lyric fm Composer-in-Residence in association with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra in 2008 and her two commissioned Carols from this time have been released on Lyric fm’s Choirs for Christmas CD. A CD of her orchestral music, performed by the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, is due for release on the RTÉ lyric fm label as part of the Composers of Ireland series, promoting the orchestral works of Irish composers and funded by RTÉ and The Arts Council.
Recently the RTÉ Philharmonic Choir and National Symphony Orchestra premiered Everyone Sang, a new work celebrating the choir’s 30th Anniversary. Elaine is currently writing a new work Regreen for the Boston Children’s Chorus for their 2015 European Tour. Recently The Abduction of Dervogilla was premiered by pianist Josepf Moog at the New Ross Piano Festival.
Elaine was elected to Aosdána in March 2015.
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