Sligo New Music Festival

I just don’t have any time at the moment to write here. I’m totally consumed by love:live music during the day (8th April people – what are you doing that day?!!!) and my Masters at night, so the next two months are going to be absolutely dead here I’m afraid. But please don’t go too far 😉

However, I wanted to do a quick post on something that’s kinda important to me. This year is Ian Wilson’s last year as Artistic Director of the Sligo New Music Festival. I have a long-standing relationship with the SNMF, and as a consequence of that, with Ian. I cut my teeth on new music, and on festival management, under the watchful eye of Aoife Flynn, when she was General Manager of The Model. It was an intense and steep learning curve as I learned the ins and outs of working with various artists, learning how to market new music, how to prepare press material, managing budgets, coordinating logistics of artists coming in and out of the country, and ultimately, how wonderful new music can be when everything goes right.

This year’s festival runs from 15 – 17 April in The Model and features two Australian guests; Oren Ambarchi and Genevieve Lacey. The two have never played in public together previously but are embarking on an ambitious programme with Wilson; a programme which includes a new large scale work by Ian for for improvising saxophonist and improvising string quartet. The SNMF always surprised me for being a high point on the Irish new music calendar in a far corner of the country. And, having programmed and managed events in Cork, Tipperary and Sligo I will be the first to say that not all the great new music in the country takes place in Dublin, but it was always reassuring to see the programme for the SNMF and know that there is artistic work of very high quality being presented across the island.

I’m sure there are many reasons for Ian’s decision to make this festival his last, including the fact that after eight years at the helm, there are surely other projects, just as ambitious, that require his attention. But for me, the new music festival formed a cornerstone in the developing reputation of The Model as a place for contemporary work of the highest quality. I’m sure everyone in the county will be sorry to see Ian end his relationship with the space and I sincerely hope the Model will continue with it’s contemporary music programming.

ok, back to the books…

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About aisling

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