After a two year gap because of the Covid pandemic, Irish Heritage was pleased to return to the prestigious surroundings of the Wigmore Hall for its annual bursary auditions on 10th November last.
Ten candidates, originally nominated by their colleges and conservatoires, had come through an initial assessment phase and were invited to perform in London. After a morning of high standard performances the adjudication panel awarded two of the four bursaries that were available.
The Irish Heritage Music Bursary for Performance was awarded to Clara Siegle, a pianist and student of the Royal Academy of Music. Clara receives a cash award of £5,000, a London debut with Irish Heritage and a recital at the 2022 Blackwater Valley Opera Festival.
The Brackaville Bursary for Vocal Studies was awarded to David Corr, a baritone and student at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. David receives a cash award of £2,500, a London debut with Irish Heritage and a performance at the 2022 Blackwater Valley Opera Festival.
The panel decided not to award the Homan Potterton Bursary for String Instruments and the Accompanist’s Award on the day and will review their decision in early 2022.
The adjudication panel consisted of Professor Colma Bríoscu and Professor Kathleen Tynan, both of the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dr Emer McDonough of the Royal College of Music and Mr Simon Aspell , founder of the Vanburgh Quartet and current teacher at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin and CIT Cork School of Music. The panel was chaired by Audrey McKenna, Artistic Director of Irish Heritage.
Commenting on the bursaries and recipients, Audrey McKenna said, “The portfolio of bursaries is an important part of the work of Irish Heritage as they provide valued recognition, performance opportunities and financial encouragement for the talented, young musicians and singers Ireland continues to produce. We are most grateful to our distinguished panel of adjudicators for their interest and support and to the Director and staff of the Wigmore Hall for all that they do to accommodate the auditions so well. The two recipients are special talents; we congratulate them and look forward to seeing them perform at Irish Heritage and other events over coming months.”