Sinead Hayes, NUI Galway civil engineering graduate and Bursary winner, will make her RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra debut on Friday, 25 October conducting Mozart’s ‘Paris’ Symphony at the National Concert Hall as part of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra’s 2013–2014 Season. Ten years after she first stood in front of an orchestra as a conductor, she will conduct as part of an all-Mozart concert programme which features violinist Baiba Skride, a major international artist, directing three Mozart concerti in the conclusion of her Mozart violin concerti cycle with the RTÉ NSO. Full concert information below.
From Corofin, Co. Galway, Sinead studied violin and piano during her school years. Following training as a structural engineer (BE (Civil), First Class Honours, National University of Ireland, Galway, 2000; Winner National University of Ireland Bursary in Civil Engineering, 2000; MSc (DIC) in Structural Steel Design, Imperial College, London, 2001) and a period working in London as a structural engineer ‘on some very interesting projects’ she returned to music. A weekly orchestral conducting course at Morley College, London, an adult education institute, was followed by further music study and graduation in 2008 with a BMus, First Class Honours, in violin and composition from City University, London and a MMus in Conducting from the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester (2009), winning the Mortimer-Furber Conducting Prize for her final recital.
Sinead says that she is ‘equally at home working with choir, orchestra and in opera’. She is currently principal conductor of the Amaretti Chamber Orchestra and has recently relocated to Berlin to learn the German language and to further her conducting experience. From 2009 – 2013 she was music director of Bury Choral Society, with whom she conducted major choral works for choir and orchestra, and was assistant conductor and chorus master for British Youth Opera’s 2011 production of Le nozze di Figaro. In June 2011 she was invited to participate in the Orkney Conductor’s Course, working with Martyn Brabbins, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and London Sinfonietta.
Sinead has a strong interest in contemporary music, particularly the work of Irish composers. In March 2012, working with an orchestra of what she describes as ‘Irish and honorary Irish string players, mostly studying/living in Manchester/London’, she devised and conducted a sell-out concert for the Manchester Irish Festival featuring the UK premiere of John Kinsella’s Symphony No. 9, Strings A-stray by Elaine Agnew and music by Micheál O Súilleabháin. She called it ‘Beyond the Shamrock’, describing it as a ‘reaction against the Plastic Shamrock perception of Ireland.’
She has participated in masterclasses with Johannes Schlaefli, Jorma Panula and Sylvain Cambreling and has worked with the Chamber Orchestra of Luxembourg, Orquestra do Algarve, North Czech Philharmonic, Bochumer Symphoniker, Essener Philharmoniker and Ensemble and Orquestra de Cadaqués.
As she prepares for her RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra debut, Sinead has commented: ‘It is fantastic to get to work with the RTÉ NSO, a world-class orchestra, and Irish also! The ‘Paris’ Symphony was one of the first pieces I conducted at Morley College. If someone had said that ten years later I would be conducting it with the RTÉ NSO, I just would not have believed them!’
Welcoming Sinead’s impending debut, Assumpta Lawless, General Manager of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra said: ‘The RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra is committed to supporting Irish artists. It is particularly exciting to offer Sinead her RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra debut in our 2013–2014 Main Season, to do so at a key stage in the development of her conducting career and to invite her to conduct Mozart’s adrenalin-packed ‘Paris’ Symphony as part of an all-Mozart evening which features the acclaimed Latvian violinist Baiba Skride directing three Mozart concerti.’