Surviving or Thriving? Panel Exchange 5: Music


Panel Exchange 5: Music

Monday 29 March, 10.30am (online)
Chair: Dr Maureen Gaffney
Speakers: Songwriter and performer Eleanor McEvoy, composer Jennifer Walshe and Tony Sheehan, Director of Triskel Arts Centre.

From Waterford Healing Arts Trust in partnership with the Arts Council.

Part of an online series of panel discussions, workshops and resources seeking to strengthen resilience, restore confidence and promote connectedness across the arts sector.

Click here for info about the entire Surviving or Thriving? programme.
Listen to a recording of this event here:

Our sincere appreciation to our associate organisations Music Network and Minding Creative Minds for their support and guidance in curating this Music strand together.

About the speakers:

Eleanor McEvoy is one of Ireland’s foremost songwriters. She is the composer, co-performer and producer of A Woman’s Heart, the title track for the biggest-selling Irish album in Irish history. Eleanor began her career as a session musician in Dublin, playing for numerous recordings and artists including U2, Sinead O’Connor and Mary Black. She was also a violinist with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland for five years, but her real passion was songwriting. Eleanor released her eponymous debut on Geffen records in LA and moved to Columbia Records in New York for her second album What’s Following Me? Since then, Eleanor has gone on to become an artist and performer known throughout the world. Her critically acclaimed canon of work spans sixteen albums.

There are numerous cover versions of her songs by performers such as Emmylou Harris, Mary Black, Phil Coulter, Mary Coughlan, Eliza Carthy, Jack L, Derek Ryan and up and coming Irish band Saint Sister. In February 2020, McEvoy completed four sold out concerts at the National Concert Hall and National Opera House, where she performed with the RTE Concert Orchestra. Two days after the concerts, she travelled to Australia for a five-week tour, which was sadly was cut short due to Covid-19. All her remaining dates for 2020, including an extensive German tour, also had to be cancelled. On 13th November 2020 she released Scarlet Angels, the first single from her new album recorded during lockdown. She wrote the song just after the February concerts with Wallis Bird and Maura O’Connell. “The concerts were amazing. We wore red on stage and raised the roof – a thousand voices sang along. It was a joy.”

Aside from her touring and recording commitments, McEvoy is the Chair of the board of IMRO and in October 2020 was appointed by Minister Catherine Martin to the Task Force for the Recovery of the Arts. Her new album Gimme Some Wine is due for release in July 2021. www.eleanormcevoy.com

“The most original compositional voice to emerge from Ireland in the past 20 years” (Irish Times) and “wild girl of Darmstadt” (Frankfurter Rundschau), composer, performer and Dublin native Jennifer Walshe’s music has been commissioned, broadcast and performed all over the world. She has been the recipient of fellowships and prizes from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, New York, the DAAD Berliner Künstlerprogramm, the Internationales Musikinstitut, Darmstadt and Akademie Schloss Solitude, among others. Walshe has written a number of operas and theatrical works, including XXX_LIVE_NUDE_GIRLS!!! an opera for Barbie dolls, and TIME TIME TIME, with the philosopher Timothy Morton, which the Wire described as “a sprawling opus that spans the history of the planet… like Robert Ashley meets Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life”. Her visual work has been exhibited in the Chelsea Art Museum, New York, Project Arts Centre, Dublin and the ICA, London. Walshe is currently Professor of Experimental Performance at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst, Stuttgart. www.milker.org | www.aisteach.org

Tony Sheehan is Artistic Director and CEO of Triskel, Cork. Since his appointment in 2006, he has led the transformation of the organisation from a regional arts centre to a major cultural hub, incorporating Christchurch, which was annexed to Triskel in 2011 after a €5 million capital project was completed. Prior to this, Tony served as Arts Adviser to the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism, and was a Programme Director and Director of Community Based Projects for Cork 2005: European Capital of Culture. Tony has had extensive experience in the arts over a thirty year period. Following an “apprenticeship” as Gallery Manager in Triskel Arts Centre in Cork from 1987-92, he served for 10 years from 1994 as Executive Director of the Fire Station Artists’ Studios. He has served on the boards of several arts organisations, including Improvised Music Company (Dublin) and Spraoí (Waterford). Tony is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and has been appointed as Fellowship Councillor for Ireland 2020-22. He lives in Youghal, County Cork. www.triskelartscentre.ie

Psychologist, writer and broadcaster Dr Maureen Gaffney earned a BA in Psychology from UCC, an MA in Behavioural Sciences from the University of Chicago and a PhD at Trinity College Dublin. She has completed Executive Education Programmes on leadership and governance in the Harvard Kennedy School, the University of Chicago Business School and the Kellogg School of Management. She is a member of the Harvard Kennedy School Women’s Leadership Board and served on its Executive Committee.

Dr Gaffney brings the latest research and thinking on emotional intelligence, resilience, and transformational leadership to her work with companies.  She has worked with a wide range of organisations, including Intel (Ireland and the US), Boston Scientific, Amazon, Google, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Bank of Ireland, Ulster Bank, as well as major professional service companies and the educational sector in Australia.

She is a much sought-after speaker and has addressed businesses in Ireland, the UK, the US, Sweden, Germany and Spain.  Dr Gaffney is a highly experienced chairperson and moderator in both the public and private sector including Executive Chair of the National Economic and Social Forum, Chair of the National Monitoring Committee of the Programme for Revitalising Areas by Planning, Investment and Development and Chair of the Insurance Ombudsman of Ireland Council for three years. She was a Board member of the HSE and has extensive experience of the health sector. She has retained a long-term interest in the legal sector since her ten year tenure as Law Reform Commissioner.  She has worked in many other sectors of Irish life – as Director of the Doctoral Programme in Clinical Psychology in Trinity College Dublin, Adjunct Professor of Psychology and Society in University College Dublin and she served on the board of the Council of the Economic and Social Research Institute.

A follow up workshop with Grainne Hope, musician, Director of Kids Classics and Atlantic Fellow Global Brain Health Institute at TCD entitled ‘Nurturing the Creative Mindset: Time & tools to support resilience and forward thinking’ takes place on Tues 30 March at 10.30am. More details here.