The 2016 artists
2017 will see the introduction of a JAZZ PIANO element to the festival. Pianos have always been an integral part of the jazz scene, so we thought it was time to explore this genre. Phil Ware, one of Ireland’s best jazz pianists, will be curating the JAZZ PIANO DAY which will be on Wednesday, September 20th. Word has it that he is bringing in one of Europe’s top pianists.
2017 will also be the year where you can book your favourite seat – in other words, allocated seating. Although the acoustics are super, over the years our regular audiences have developed their “favourite” seats and have started arriving extremely early in order to get them. With luck that will not be necessary in 2017! We will keep you all informed, and will review the process after the festival. Our artists are almost sorted, and its all very exciting. All will be revealed SHORTLY.
The 2016 Festival is over. It was held, as always, on the last complete weekend in September. This year’s dates are also rather earlier than usual so mark the date now.
September 20th to 24th, 2017.
In 2018 the last weekend will be almost a week later……
October 2016: older news, but you can catch up with our last festival here:
This festival lived up to all previous high standards, and the audiences went away with some wonderful memories. Highlights? Impossible to judge because there were so many, but Nicholas Angelich and the Quatuor Ebene performing the Franck Piano Quintet, Piers Lane’s Chopin pieces, Finghin Collins’ Four Impromptus of Schubert, Jonathan Morris playing the world premiere of one of the Ros Tapestry Suite new commissions from memory, and Nathalia Milstein’s amazing Prokofiev. And who can forget Jonathan and Nathalia’s atmospheric late night programme of French music for four hands – Faure, Ravel and Bizet? So many magical moments…….
Throughout the weekend the world premieres of the final five pieces in the Ros Tapestry Suite took place, bringing to a close the ambitious three-year project which has seen the commissioning of fifteen Irish composers to respond to the 15 panels of the amazing Ros Tapestry in music. The composers this year were Raymond Deane, Philip Martin, Grainne Mulvey, Marian Ingoldsby and Garrett Sholdice. Finghin Collins fronted an interesting discussion about the challenges of composing music inspired by a picture with the latter three composers on Sunday morning. On Saturday morning he welcomed Richard Lomas, an historian from Northumbria who has written a booklet about the Normans who are connected with the New Ross area. The proceeds from the sale of these was generously given to the Piano Festival funds.
On Friday the renowned jazz pianist, Phil Ware, was in town with bass player Damien Evans, and gave short recitals in unusual venues, such as the Dunbrody Cafe and the Library. A similar pattern took place on Saturday with Patrick Molitor, who has been influential in preparing students for entry into the degrees in jazz piano that are now available in Ireland.
There were the usual outreach sessions with students of all levels, and the placing of “Play Me” pianos in unusual venues for the public to play whenever they feel like it.
This year lived up to the festival’s growing reputation as a unique niche weekend for lovers of the piano and its fantastic repertoire. It all happens in a small-town intimate atmosphere in a lovely part of Ireland – forty five minutes from the Rosslare Ferry Port, and two hours from Dublin Airport. And audience members were there from the UK, France and Switzerland, as well as all parts of Ireland.
“…a little gem…”, “…innovative planning…”, “…atmospheric charm…”, “attractive acoustic…” Some of the reviewers’ comments about the festival
And then there are the pianists – Cristina Ortiz, Freddy Kempf, Melvyn Tan, Norika Ogawa, Lisa de la Salle, Sunwook Kim, Joseph Moog, Lilya Zilberstein, Kathryn Stott, and Cedric Pescia are amongst the 49 international stars audiences have had the pleasure of listening to over the past eleven years.