Katherine Mac Mághnuis
Katharine Mac Mághnuis is a violinist, viola player, fiddler and pedagogue. She has a starred 1st class honours degree in Music from NUI Maynooth. While most of her time is spent in her unabashedly singular pursuit of promoting youth orchestras, Katharine also has been a member of the Irish Memory Orchestra since 2013, being appointed Deputy Leader in 2017. Katharine also plays with the Grey Lake String Quartet and with the Galway Cathedral Players.
Katharine’s teaching career spans 27 years. She founded Athenry Music School in 2007 which now hosts a faculty of 29 teachers and a student body of over 400. She is a three time recipient of the National Award for Youth Orchestra Development. She has taught on the National Suzuki Camps in Ireland and Scotland since 2000, the National Chamber music weekend since 2007 and has lectured in Europe, America and Australia.
Having studied at the State Music School 1977 – 1985; the Béla Bartók Conservatory of Music, Budapest 1986 – 1990 and the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest 1991 – 1996, Gergely went on to obtain a First-Class Degree in Music as a Professional Violinist and Violin Teacher in 1997. He has performed extensively over the last twenty years most notably as Concertmaster of the Hungarian National Filharmonic Orchestra for 16 years from 2000.- 2016; Concertmaster, Camerata Academica Salzburg; Second Violin Principal, Acadimia Chamber Orchestra; Concertmaster at the Ferenc Erkel Chamber Orchestra and for the Ulster Orchestra as Section Leader, 2nd violin. He has taught violin since 1998 at the Béla Bartók Conservatory in Budapest and privately. He has made many recordings both for film soundtracks and CDs and has performed regularly at recitals all over Europe and Ireland.
Brigid Leman was born in Ottawa, Canada, where she began violin lessons at age seven. She has a Bachelor of Music Degree in Performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, a Masters in Orchestra Performance from the Zürich University of the Arts (Zürcher Hochschule der Künste), and a Postgraduate Certificate from the University of Music (Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt) in Weimar, Germany. As part of her studies in Zürich and Weimar, Brigid played with the Zürich Opera and Jenaer Philharmonie. Her main teachers and mentors have included Bettina Mussumeli, Mark Sokol, Stephan Picard, Ulrich Gröner and Ikki Opitz. From 2012 to 2019 Brigid held a contract position as second violin with the Hamburg State Opera (Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Hamburg) under Simone Young and Kent Nagano. She has played as a substitute with orchestras in Germany such as the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra (Hamburg), the Hamburg Symphony, Ensemble Resonanz (Hamburg), and the State Philharmonic Orchestra of Lübeck, as well as in Denmark with the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra.
Dr Ingrid Nicola
Principal Second Violin
Ingrid Nicola is the violinist/founding member of ConTempo quartet,a celebrated string quartet that has become RTE's quartet in residence (Ireland's National Television and Radio Broadcaster) in 2014 and is Galway's Ensemble in Residence since 2003.
Ingrid is a chamber music visiting teacher at the Royal Academy of Music/Dublin, and has been holding lectures/workshops at the Royal Academy of Music in London (1999-2002) ,Gedai University of Music Tokyo/Japan , DIT and Cork School of Music.
On the 10th of June 2016, Ingrid was awarded a Degree of Doctor of Music (honoris causa) by the National University of Ireland (NUIG).
Nuala Ní Chanainn
Originally from Cork, Nuala lived and played in Galway for 20 years and toured extensively as violinist and singer in theatre and in various ensembles both here and abroad. She now lives and works between Cork and Galway.
Dave Clarke studied music with Ruth Dalton in Manchester and later on with Penny Stirling at the Royal Northern College of Music where he obtained his Associated Board diploma working with the Junior Strings project there.
His chamber music career has spanned over 30 years and is a freelance violinist/violist both here in Ireland and in the UK. Since 2003 he has played with the Corrib String Quartet who have been playing together for twenty five years. He is a dedicated music pedagogue and is currently teaching the Colourstrings method of violin tuition which has produced extraordinary results.
Dr Andreea Banciu
Dr Andreea BANCIU is the violist/founder of the RTÉ ConTempo Quartet, Galway Ensemble in Residence since 2003 &
RTE Quartet in Residence since 2012.
She is a lecturer in viola at DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama, Dublin (2017) and a chamber music visiting teacher at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, (2014).
Originally from Dublin, Eilish was awarded a Bachelor in Music Degree from Trinity College Dublin and a PGCE in Music and Specialist Strings Teaching from the Royal Northern College of Music/Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK. She returned to Ireland to complete a Masters in Classical String Performance in violin with Marianna Sirbu at the University of Limerick where she commenced studies of the viola with Bruno Giuranna. Eilish enjoys playing violin, viola and piano and has a keen interest in both chamber music and orchestral music. She has performed with the RTE Concert Orchestra, the City of Dublin Chamber Orchestra, Hibernian Orchestra and Co-Orch Dublin, and plays viola with String Serenade and Soundpost Quartets here in Galway. Eilish teaches violin, viola and piano in GTI School of Music, Galway.
Tom graduated with a B. Mus. from University College Cork. He also holds Licentiate diplomas from The Associated Board, The Royal Irish Academy of Music and the London College of Music. He has studied with Una Kindlon of the NSO in Cork, Viola with Seamus O Grady also of the NSO. Tom really enjoys playing chamber music and regularly plays with the Corrib String Quartet and Yukatope String Quartet. He is a founding member of the Loughrea Music Club which presents free monthly concerts in Loughrea Library.
Dr Adrian Mantu
Dr Adrian Mantu is the cellist/founder of the RTÉ ConTempo Quartet (since 1995), Galway Ensemble in Residence since 2002 and RTE, Ireland’s National Television & Radio Broadcaster’s Quartet in Residence, since 2012. Adrian is the Curator of both ‘Enescu Festival Dublin’ (2017) and Our Tunes/Dublin Music Town Festival (since 2014), cello teacher & chamber music visiting teacher at the Royal Irish Academy of Music (since 2015) and the ‘Romanian Cultural Institute’ representative in Ireland.
Alona Kliuchka was born in Ukraine in 1991. When she was 17 she started studying cello at the Lugansk Music College. After this time she moved to Moscow and began studying at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory (2012-2017). Here, she obtained her diploma with the highest qualifications in the class of Evgeny Rumyantsev. She was a member of the chamber orchestra Moscovia, conducted by E. Grach. Also, she played first cello in the chamber orchestra Antonio and from 2016 she worked with composer Nikolai Poluboyarov, which involved playing concerts in many different countries in Europe (Poland, Spain, Slovakia, etc.) Kliuchka also won first prize at the Fermata competition and the international "Prokofiev" competition in Moscow (2015). After this Alona got her Master’s degree in the Hague Royal Conservatory (2019). She has participated in many different festivals and orchestras like NJO (2015), AIMS festival in Solsona (2016) Zutphen cello festival (2017) , Cello Bienale Festival in the Netherlands (2018),Animato festival in Austria (2018), Pomersfelden Academy in Germany (2019) where she played as Principal Cellist. Alona has played with Residentie Orkest in the Hague, Adda Simfonica orchestra in Alicante, as guest player performed with Irish Chamber Orchestra in Limerick and Dublin. Alona currently studies at the University of Limerick and works as cello teacher under the programme S.O.W.S which is organised by the ICO.
Originally from Scotland, Nicola Geddes studied Environmental Art at the Glasgow School of Art, and Cello Performance at the London School of Music. She has a wide range of experience in chamber music, orchestral and solo performance, and has also toured and worked as session player with many bands and ensembles. Based in Galway, Nicola has a busy teaching practice both privately and in schools.
Teresa graduated in 2005 with an Honours Bachelor of Music Degree from the Cork School of Music. A keen orchestra musician, she started playing first with Wexford Sinfonia, and then went on to join the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland. She is currently principal Double Bass with the Irish Symphonic Wind Orchestra. She has participated in many orchestra tours abroad including Germany, Holland, Denmark, and Finland. Teresa has been teaching individual lessons and working as a grade exam accompanist for over 10 years. In 2011 she completed a three year training to become a fully certified teacher of the Alexander Technique.
Born in Australia to musical parents from Latvia, erstwhile member of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, currently alternating concert master with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and regular guest leader with RTÉ national Symphony Orchestra and RTÉ concert orchestra
Dr Bogdan Sofei
Co-founder of ConTempo Quartet, Bogdan Sofei was born in Bucharest, 1975 and is the leader of ConTempo String Quartet. ConTempo have been the Ensemble-in-Residence in Galway since January 2003 and appointed as the RTE Resident Quartet since May 2014.
Over her 20 years as a teacher and performer Áine has created, developed and directed 2 children's orchestras, one of which received a National Award during the children's Orchestra Music Festival held annually in the National Concert Hall, Dublin. Áine is now based in Galway and performs on a regular basis with her String Quartet “String Serenade” and she also works with a very established singer in Galway. Orchestrally Áine works as a deputy player with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra. Áine also performed on contract with the String Orchestra of Brooklyn while living in New York and since her return in 2008 she has completed a Masters in Performance at the University of Limerick. While there she played with the Irish Chamber Orchestra for the visit of his holiness, the Dalai Lama.