Celebrating Irish Female Composers

An Evening of Music at Vienna’s Ehrbar Saal

May 27th, 2024
Yevheniia Symakova, News from Berlin
20240527 Celebrating Irish.jpg

Vienna’s Ehrbar Saal hosted a musical evening on April 22, dedicated to the legacy and contributions of Irish female composers. Supported by the Irish Embassy in Austria, the event featured performances by flutist Miriam Kaczor and pianist Elaine Loebenstein, showcasing a selection of contemporary and historical works.

In an event aimed at recognizing the artistic achievements of Irish women, Vienna’s Ehrbar Saal became a focal point for musical appreciation. The concert, organized with support from the Embassy of Ireland in Austria, highlighted the contributions of Irish female composers from the nineteenth century to the present day. Ambassador O’Leary welcomed attendees, many from the local Irish community, who gathered to honor the composers.

Miriam Kaczor, a flutist originally from Poland who grew up in Dublin, and Elaine Loebenstein, a pianist from Cavan, combined their talents for this performance. The program included works by Mary Dickenson-Auner, Linda Buckley, Augusta Holmès, Jennifer Walshe, Rhona Clarke and Solfa Carlile. The event offered both entertainment and education, as Miriam and Elaine shared insights into the lives and challenges faced by each composer before performing their works.

The concert was part of a broader initiative funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs to promote St. Brigid’s Day and celebrate the achievements of Irish women globally. This year’s event also marked the 1,500th anniversary of St. Brigid’s passing, connecting the historical significance of the saint to the ongoing cultural contributions of Irish women in the arts.

The evening’s program featured a variety of compositions, ranging from late 19th-century pieces by Augusta Holmès to contemporary works by Linda Buckley. Highlights included:

  1. Augusta Holmès — Trois Petites Pièces (1896), Pour Flûte et Piano (1896)
  2. Mary Dickenson-Auner — Irish Love Song (1908), Irish Melody (1911), Drei Klavierstücke (1937)
  3. Rhona Clarke — From Four Songs (2006)
  4. Jennifer Walshe — becher (2008)
  5. Solfa Carlile — Dystopia (2010)
  6. Linda Buckley — Sólás / Solace (2019)

Each piece reflected the unique voice and style of its composer, offering the audience a broad spectrum of Irish musical heritage.

The evening at Ehrbar Saal was a celebration of Irish music, enhancing appreciation for the role of women in shaping the cultural and musical heritage of the country. Events like these ensure that the legacy of St. Brigid and the achievements of Irish women continue to inspire and resonate on an international stage.

20240527 Celebrating Irish 2.jpg

Elaine and Miriam performed together at Vienna's Ehrbar Saal, and were joined after their performance by Ambassador O'Leary and his wife Anne. Picture Credit: Embassy of Ireland to Austria


News from Berlin