Roscommon County Council Arts Office is pleased to announce that composer Ryan Molloy is the first recipient of this new Award. The King House Piano Commission 2020/21 marks the first in a series of music commissions by Roscommon County Council, in celebration of the grand piano at King House. The Steinway Grand Piano was purchased by Roscommon County Council in 1998 through the Arts Council Joint Purchase Scheme.
The 2020 commission to the value of €8,000 is funded by the Arts Office of Roscommon County Council together with the Arts Council of Ireland, in collaboration with Boyle Arts Festival and in association with the Contemporary Music Centre.
Accepting the award, Ryan Molloy has said ‘I am honoured to have been selected for the King House Piano Commission and look forward to working on the new piece. I feel that the commission’s themes of embracing the traditional and classical worlds, as well as local and national heritage, resonate strongly with my own performance practice and compositional voice. The call for proposals caused me to reflect on the many composer-performers that have emerged from traditional Irish music – many of whom shaped the music for future generations, from Turlough O’Carolan to Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin – and of how challenging one’s own performance can lead to new compositional ideas. I hope to explore this composer-performer duality through the course of this new work and to challenge my fellow musicians as well as myself!”
Announcing the award, Arts Officer Rhona McGrath says she is ‘looking forward to working with the composer, the musicians, Boyle Arts Festival and Caroline Wynne, project manager. King House is a stunning venue, with an array of fascinating exhibitions, in a charming historic and cultural quarter of Boyle. The Main Salon and the Grand Piano are the heart and soul of King House and fittingly all corridors lead there. We look forward to those corridors and rooms being filled again with the sounds and sights of Boyle Arts Festival in 2021. The commission, to be premiered during the festival, will merge the worlds of classical and traditional music, celebrating the history and heritage of the county through uplifting, exceptional music, reflecting the lives of Roscommon people.’