RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra 2012-2013 Season



Ten advanced young instrumental students, ranging in ages from 19 to 27 and from counties Dublin, Cork, Clare, Fermanagh and Meath, have been selected by audition to take part in the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra's 2012 Mentoring Scheme for Advanced Young Musicians. All ten are first-time participants. They will perform with the RTÉ NSO, conducted by 2012 Malko Competition winner Rafael Payare, in Shostakovich's Symphony No. 10 and Richard Strauss' Don Juan on Friday 30 November at the National Concert Hall.

The final ten are students of violin (2), cello (1), flute (1), trumpet (1), tuba (1), horn (1), harp (1) and percussion (2) and studying at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama, the Royal Irish Academy of Music and the CIT Cork School of Music at stages ranging from first year through to masters and post-graduate level. At 19, percussion students Ronan Dikker from Knocklyon, Dublin and Brian Dungan, Dunboyne, Co Meath, are the youngest participants. Ronan is a first year B.A. in Music Performance student at the Royal Irish Academy of Music; Brian is a second year B.Mus.Ed. student at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. The other participants are Liane Bradley (21), flute, from Ennis, Co Clare and Anne Manach (27), violin, from Clisson in France, both studying at the CIT Cork School of Music; Eoghan Cooke (21), trumpet, and Aisling Deevy (21), horn, both from Dublin and Claire O'Donnell (23), from Bray, Co Wicklow, all studying at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama; and Cristina Ryan (24), violin, from Dublin, Yseult Cooper Stockdale (21), cello, from Cork and Stephen Crooks (20) from Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh, all studying at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. Full details below.

The RTÉ NSO Mentoring Scheme, in which students rehearse and perform with the orchestra and with conductors and soloists of international stature, is now in its third year. Feedback from RTÉ NSO players to the young musicians in relation to audition, rehearsal and performance continues to be a major element of the mentoring process.

As in previous years, selection was on the basis of a full orchestral audition before a core panel of RTÉ NSO players and principal players as appropriate to the candidates. 11 RTÉ NSO players were involved. The core panel consisted of Alan Smale, Leader; Catriona Ryan, Flute Section Leader and Martin Johnson, Cello Section Leader. Principal players were John Finucane, clarinet; Fintan Sutton, bass clarinet; David Atcheler, horn; Graham Hastings, trumpet; Francis Magee, tuba, Roger Moffatt, percussion; Andreja Malír, harp and Adèle Johnson, viola.

Four of this year's participants are undertaking instrumental study at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. Speaking of the importance of the scheme, RIAM Director Deborah Kelleher said "The RTÉ NSO's mentoring scheme, enabling young musicians to make the transition between education and the profession in a supportive and protected environment, is now a key part of the learning experience of Irish orchestral students. At a time when they are at varying stages of study and considering their own careers, students get to experience the life of a professional orchestral musician for a magical time which includes the professional orchestral audition with its immensely valuable feedback element, the discipline of the orchestral rehearsal, the challenge of working with an international conductor and of course, the live performance. From day one, this is a scheme which we now highlight as a goal to our incoming students."

Looking forward to the mentoring scheme period, Séamus Crimmins, Acting RTÉ NSO General Manager said: "The Mentoring Scheme rehearsal and performance period is a highlight in the RTÉ NSO's schedule as our musicians sit side by side with young musicians of exceptional ability. It is always a pleasure to welcome new talent, be it orchestral players, soloists or conductors, and it is our privilege to work with a range of advanced music students on an annual basis. Although the mentoring programme was established to benefit young performers through the experience of everyday life in a professional symphony orchestra, the mentoring scheme has been an enriching one for the RTÉ NSO musicians as well. This year's group is the largest in the three years of the scheme. We are particularly pleased that it was possible to secure the young Venezuelan conductor Rafael Payare to conduct this concert involving student participation in two major works, and to lead these young players through what we hope will be a memorably and rewarding time, both musically and personally."
'The mentoring scheme marked my first time to rehearse and perform with a professional orchestra. Thanks for such a great week. It was an amazing experience!'
Rónán Scarlett, percussion, Clonsilla, Dublin

'Preparing for the audition gave me the opportunity to improve on my audition skills and was a very positive experience.'
Mary Morgan, trombone, Glenamaddy, Co. Galway

'The RTÉ NSO's Mentoring Scheme is one of the most important outreach initiatives developed by the orchestra. The opportunity for our students to rehearse and perform with seasoned professionals in a supported environment creates a meaningful transition between education and real life.'
Deborah Kelleher,
Royal Irish Academy of Music Director

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