Cork Independent – Solfa shows how to stay perfectly composed

Written by Brian Hayes Curtin, Thursday 11th February, 2010

Cork born composer Solfa Carlile, is the winner of this year’s Jerome Hynes Composers Competition, awarded by The National Concert Hall. With an entry for voice and piano entitled ‘Sounds’ set to the poem of the same name by Irish poet Brendan Kennelly, Solfa won top place in the competition.

As well as securing a substantial cash prize of €1,500 Solfa will have her piece performed in recital by The National Concert Hall ‘Rising Star 2010′ mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught on Monday 1 March at 8pm. Judith Woodworth, Director of the National Concert Hall, commented:

“The Jerome Hynes’ Competition offers an important platform for aspiring composers throughout Ireland. Endorsing and encouraging young musicians is an important part of what we do here at the Hall so we are delighted to announce that Solfa Carlile is this year’s winner. “Young musicians and composers are our future and it is of the utmost importance that they are supported to ensure the progress of new music in Ireland,” she added. Solfa said, “I was delighted to be chosen as the winner. As a young composer, it is very important for me to have my work recognised in Ireland and it doesn’t get any better than The National Concert Hall. Although based in London I am very much an Irish composer and it shows in my music. I am also particularly pleased that my piece ‘Sounds’ is based on a poem by one of my favourite poets – Brendan Kennelly”.

The Ossian Ensemble, Okeanos, London Irish Symphony Orchestra and Composers Ensemble, UK have performed Solfa’s music, among others. In 2007 she was commissioned to write a flute-concerto for international soloist James Strauss. The work, ‘The Silkie Wife’ was performed in Brazil, in June 2008.

Commissions also include an epic-work, ‘Deirdre and Naoise’, which was performed by the London Irish Symphony Orchestra in 2007. Her piece ‘Abeo’, for Brass Sextet, was awarded the Concerto Prize at RCM in 2009. She is now studying for a Masters in Advanced Composition at the RCM, supported by the Sir Richard Stapley Trust. She first began composing at the age of 11.

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