‘It has been a particularly gruelling competition, with a higher proportion of players striving to make an impression through sheer volume than I remember from any previous year.’ Photograph: Cyril Byrne

I experienced a real shock to the system last Thursday. The Ulster Orchestra was at the National Concert Hall for a first Dublin appearance at the (...)

Gábor Takács-Nagy: his Haydn is anything but routine

The new orchestral season got under way in earnest last week: the Irish Chamber Orchestra was in action at the RDS in Dublin on Thursday and the RT(...)

Séamus Crimmins: “I think I have done all I can to consolidate the standing of the ensembles and, in particular, to lift artistic standards while facing down unprecedented financial challenges”

Most music lovers in Ireland take it for granted, as if it’s the natural order of things. RTÉ is the dominant force in the country’s orchestral life, (...)