New Music Dublin 2018: Adventurous music seeks curious ears

New Music Dublin’s eclectic festival programme for March 2018 features classical, electronic, alt-rock, folk, trad, sound art and more, all taking place in, and around, the National Concert Hall

The programme for New Music Dublin 2018 features artists such as Crash Ensemble, the RTÉ Orchestras, Quartets & Choirs, Chamber Choir Ireland and the Irish Chamber Orchestra


Concerts, world premieres, secret music trails, films, interactive events, family-friendly shows and late night performances – there’s something for every music lover in New Music Dublin’s 2018 programme. With a focus on the new, whether it be classical, electronica, alt-rock or sound art, choral, experimental and much more in between, the festival promises to delight and challenge concert-goers in a myriad of ways. 

The packed programme for March 2018 features renowned Irish artists such as Crash Ensemble, the RTÉ Orchestras, Quartets & Choirs, Chamber Choir Ireland and the Irish Chamber Orchestra, international rising stars such as pianist Simon Smith, sheng player Wu Wei and conductor Ryan McAdams, and works by composers as eclectic as Terry Riley, Stockhausen, Donnacha Dennehy and James MacMillan.

The programme for New Music Dublin 2018 features renowned Irish artists such as Crash Ensemble (pictured), the RTÉ Orchestras, Quartets & Choirs, Chamber Choir Ireland and the Irish Chamber Orchestra
Ireland's leading new music ensemble, Crash Ensemble 

You can take part in a totally made-up orchestra, watch the sun set at a free outdoor opening concert, test your musical mettle with a two-hour long Stockhausen lock-in, take part in a mystery music trail around Dublin city and finish it all off with the extraordinary choral masterpiece that is James MacMillan’s Stabat Mater.

Scottish composer, James McMillan
Scottish composer, James MacMillan

[Book tickets for New Music Dublin 2018 now

At precisely 18.02 (sunset) on Thursday, March 1st, 2018, New Music Dublin begins with CRASH ON THE STEPS, a free outdoor concert by Crash Ensemble who will present a brand new composition from the award-winning Grainne Mulvey, music from Ed Bennett’s Accel and Terry Riley's Loops For Ancient-Giant-Nude-Hairy Warriors Racing Down The Slopes Of Battle.

The performance will be live and amplified on the steps of the National Concert Hall. The festival concludes four hectic days later with a mass rendition of Louis Andriessen’s Workers Union, with Crash Ensemble and all musicians from the weekend left standing. The emphasis will be on loud

See newmusicdublin.ie for more information and tickets for all shows. 

Festival programme: March 1st to 4th, 2018

Thursday, March 1st: 
6.02pm: Crash On The Steps | NCH Front Steps
7.30pm: Monumental: Credo + Goliath | NCH Main Hall
10.30pmGarth Knox + Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh | NCH Studio

Friday, March 2nd: 
12.30pmFidelio Trio: Commissions | NCH Kevin Barry Room
2.00pm: Composers in the Classroom Gala Concert | NCH Studio
6.00pm: Composers at the Bar | NCH Foyer Pop-up Bar
7.30pm: James MacMillan: Stabat Mater | St Ann’s Church, Dawson St
9.00pm: Continental Drift: Chin, Wu, Volans, Power | NCH Main Hall
10.30pm: Live Screening: The Informer | NCH Studio

Saturday, March 3rd:
10.30am + 2.30pm: New, Music, Go! | NCH Various Spaces
1.00pm: All Aboard Concorde | NCH Kevin Barry Room
6.00pm: Stockhausen: Natural Durations | NCH Kevin Barry Room
7.30pm: Composers at the Bar | NCH Foyer Pop-up Bar
8.30pm: THIS IS NOT THIS HEAT | NCH Main Hall
10.30pm: Double Take: Grisey + Dennehy | NCH Studio

Sunday, March 4th:
11.00am + 11.30am + 12.00pm: The Secret Music Trail | NCH & Dublin City
3.00pm: RTÉ Contempo Quartet with Dave Kerr | NCH Kevin Barry Room
5.00pm: The Totally Made-Up Orchestra | NCH Medical Library
6.00pm: Composers At the Bar | NCH Foyer Pop-up Bar
7.30pm: David Fennessy: Conquest of the Useless | NCH Main Hall
9.00pm: Out With A Crash | NCH Studio 

Now in its fifth year, New Music Dublin 2018 has been curated by composer John Harris, who is also chief executive and artistic co-director of the Red Note Ensemble in Scotland. Speaking about the festival, Harris says, "New Music Dublin is all about escaping boundaries, whether boundaries set by musical genres, or boundaries set by bricks and mortar, or the boundaries of our own musical expectations. It's about the journey as much as it is about the destination, it's about leaving home and finding treasure along the way.”

Daring and imaginative, New Music Dublin has been offering experiences that exhilarate and surprise in equal measure since 2013. Over the years, works from musical giants such as David Lang, Julia Wolfe, John Luther Adams, Steve Reich, The National’s Bryce Dessner, Donnacha Dennehy, Meredith Monk, Brian Eno, Linda and Irene Buckley, Thomas Adès and Gerald Barry have featured in the festival lineup.

The festival is a partnership initiative of the National Concert Hall, RTÉ Orchestras, Quartets and Choirs, and the Arts Council of Ireland / An Chomhairle Ealaíon.

New Music Dublin runs from March 1st to 4th, 2018.

All shows are now on sale at newmusicdublin.ie