Toner Quinn is editor of the Journal of Music.
The writer Desmond Fennell, who died this week, had clear ideas about the role of new thinking and debate in society. They are relevant to Irish music today, writes Toner Quinn.
Now in its seventh edition, the latest 'Tradition Now' festival took place at the National Concert Hall on 19–20 June, but it is still not clear what this event is trying to achieve, writes Toner Quinn.
Right now, the world is talking about ‘creative solutions’ for the post-pandemic era, for the climate crisis, and for every other challenge that we face, but, asks Toner Quinn, how committed are we to supporting creativity and creative people?
Music and broadcasting go hand in hand, but RTÉ's leadership role in music has been shrinking in recent years. Toner Quinn suggests four ways to turn the situation around.
Martin Hayes’ livestreamed concert from the National Concert Hall last week (8 December) gave an insight into the changing music of the fiddle-player, and revealed new collaborative directions. Toner Quinn reviews.
The latest release from the traditional music label Raelach Records is its very first compilation album, featuring Noel Hill, Aoife Ní Bhriain, Pádraic Keane and Nell Ní Chróinín. Toner Quinn reviews.
Why is the public conversation around music important, and how do we make it stronger? Toner Quinn reflects on twenty years of publishing the Journal of Music and the changes that have taken place.
The government’s funding announcement for the arts in Budget 2021 was unprecedented, and there are lessons to be learned from the way in which it came about, writes Toner Quinn.
Toner Quinn reviews two new works, 'Óró', which brought together artists from around Europe and took place in the Conamara Gaeltacht, and Jennifer Walshe’s live-streamed premiere, 'Ireland: A Dataset'.
John Hume's views on the role of artists in a conflict are worth considering today, writes Toner Quinn.
The experience of one village in the west of Ireland shows that the new Minister for Arts faces a serious challenge, to change the way we think about culture and its role in our society, writes Toner Quinn.
A new documentary explores the extraordinary story of David Gray and Ireland in the 1990s, the making of 'White Ladder', and how it became Ireland's best-selling album of all time, but is the story as simple as it seems? Toner Quinn reviews.
If we are going to tackle racism, we need to improve our conversations about culture, writes Toner Quinn.
The government's 'Ireland Performs' series, which was partly funded by Facebook, put already under pressure artists in an unacceptable position. We have got to think hard about the way we support music into the future, writes Toner Quinn.
‘Slí na mBeaglaoich’, featuring the musical travels around Ireland of father and son Breanndán and Cormac Ó Beaglaoich, is currently showing on TG4. Toner Quinn reviews.
A new feature-length documentary on the great piper Liam O'Flynn was broadcast on TG4 at the weekend. Toner Quinn reviews.
The COVID-19 pandemic means we are going to witness another radical shift in music in the digital age, writes Toner Quinn.
If artists and musicians are ever going to solve their perennial financial issues then it is time for a different approach, writes Toner Quinn.
The Midwinter Festival in Galway focused on early Beethoven this year, and brought a renowned piano-violin partnership to the west. Toner Quinn reviews.
Irish harping has been given recognition by UNESCO. It is an important moment for Irish music, writes Toner Quinn.
The inaugural TradTalk conference, a new discussion forum for traditional artists, took place last weekend (16 November). Toner Quinn reflects on some of the issues raised.
Traditional music once comforted us and reassured us, writes Toner Quinn, but not Lankum.
The Irish Memory Orchestra and 26 musicians with sight loss gave the world premiere of Dave Flynn's Vision Symphony last weekend. Toner Quinn reviews.
Last weekend, Irish National Opera gave the first ever Irish performance of an opera by Vivaldi – the story of a formidable woman subjected to ridicule and abuse. Toner Quinn reviews.
We have entered a new era in Irish music, writes Toner Quinn, in which a language based on traditional music and song is producing extraordinary work across genres, but is it getting the attention it deserves?
Lyric FM is under threat because of RTÉ's financial difficulties, but a better future for the station is possible, writes Toner Quinn.
Cherry Smyth's 'Famished' – a collection of poems focused on the famine – was performed at Kilkenny Arts Festival last week, with singer Lauren Kinsella and composer Ed Bennett. Toner Quinn reviews.
Kilkenny Arts Festival presented the Irish premiere of Ed Bennett's 'Song of the Books' last week, performed by Kate Ellis and Crash Ensemble. Toner Quinn reviews.
The achievements of Ireland's composers abroad are not getting enough attention at home.
Irish National Opera gave the world premiere of 'Least Like the Other: Searching for Rosemary Kennedy' in Galway this week, a work by composer Brian Irvine and director Netia Jones that tells the story of JFK's sister. Toner Quinn reviews.
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