Smock Alley Theatre, 8 April 2016


SPOILS is a new concert-length work by Fergal Dowling for Baroque chamber ensemble, interactive electronics, surround sound and video. SPOILS was developed with assistance from Dublin City Council Project Awards and Arts Council Music Bursary, and will be performed as part of Music Current, a new festival of contemporary music organised by Dublin Sound Lab.

Music Current 2016
Aoife Ni Dhornain (Baroque violin)
Marja Gaynor (Baroque violin)
Ilse de Ziah (Baroque cello)
Michael Quinn (harpsichord)
Olwen Fouéré (recorded voice)
Fergal Dowling (computer)
Mihai Cucu (video)

College Chapel, Waterford IT, 24 March 2015

Waterford New Music Week logo

Re-Sounding #2, a programme of recent works for organ, fixed media and live eletronics at Waterford New Music Week 2015, College Chapel, Waterford Institute of Technology. Performers: Michael Quinn, organ, Fergal Dowling, computer

Nissim Schaul, Harpsichord Swirl (multichannel fixed media)
Mauricio Kagel, Raga (solo organ)
Mauricio Kagel, Rossignols (solo organ)
Peter Ablinger, Orgel Und Weltempfänger (organ and FM-receiver)
Fergal Dowling, Ground (organ, multichannel live electronics)
Gráinne Mulvey, Streetorgsounds (organ and fixed media)

Temple Bar Gallery & Studios, Dublin, 18 September 2014

Dublin Sound Lab Tiger Dublin Fringe, Responses

Photos: Robyson Vilaronga

Responses is the second of our two concerts in the Tiger Dublin Fringe 2014 at Temple Bar Gallery & Studios. In this specially devised programme four Dublin composers––Piaras Hoban, Gráinne Mulvey, Fergal Dowling and Rob Canning––collaborated to create a common response to Ablinger's 3 Places Dublin in a performance for five wind musicians, interactive electronics and mobile audience distributed throughout the four levels of the Temple Bar Gallery & Studios Atrium space. The concert closes with a new work by Rob Canning using specially devised mobile transmitters attached to the instrumentalists that allow them to leave the building and transmit their performance back into the venue while exploring the urban soundscape around Dublin City centre.

Piaras Hoban, earth mutter : pray : no sense, only fuck (for fixed media)
Gráinne Mulvey, Resounding Waves (for flute, clarinet, horn and two trumpets)
Fergal Dowling, Three Reconstructions (for five instruments, computer and reverberant space)
Rob Canning, Responses (for ambulatory ensemble, bi-directional network streams, live electronics, improvisers)

Performers: Joe O'Farrell (flute), Paul Roe (clarinet), Kevin O'Hara (horn), Eoghan Cooke (trumpet), Shane Clear (trumpet), Gráinne Mulvey (live electronics), Fergal Dowling (live electronics), Rob Canning (live electronics)

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3 Places Dublin
Temple Bar Gallery, Dublin Fruit Market, St Michan's Church,
17 Sept 2014

Dublin Sound Lab, Tiger Dublin Fringe, 3 Places Dublin

3 Places Dublin, inside Dublin City Fruit Market. Performers: Joe O'Farrell (flute), Paul Roe (clarinet), Kevin O'Hara (horn), Eoghan Cooke (trumpet), Larissa O'Grady (violin).

Our first of two concerts contextualising music performance in the urban environment at Tiger Dublin Fringe 2014. In both concerts five musicians lead the audience on an interactive navigation through Dublin's soundscape. 3 Places Dublin, by Austrian composer Peter Ablinger, is a new multi-venue work for three unique acoustic spaces in Dublin, visited by audience and musicians walking together through the city.

Peter analyses how white noise behaves in each of the three buildings to develop a score in the form of a microtonal scale representing the main formants for each of the three 'rooms', a kind of a self-portrait of each of the three spaces. In performance, five instrumentalists replay these formants as sustained tones in a more or less free order for about twenty minutes, then players and audience walk together to the next place.

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Peter Ablinger Masterclass
Contemporary Music Centre, Dublin, 18 September 2014

Peter Ablinger

After recently teaching at Darmstadt International Summer Course and Gaudeamus Music Week, Peter Ablinger visits Dublin to oversee a performance of his site-specific work 3 Places Dublin (17 September 2014), specially rewritten for three Dublin spaces. During his first visit to Dublin Peter will attend the Contemporary Music Centre for a masterclass with six composers: Ben McHugh, Amanda Feery, Jane Deasy, Nick Roth, Bryan Robson and Sebastian Adams.

Since the early 1980s, Peter Ablinger has explored new aesthetic and technical fields in his works, examining listeners' perceptions of sound, noise, timbre, performance context, and non-narrative forms through site-specific performances, installations, text-based works, instrumental and electronic collaborations (including his famous 'speaking piano' pieces), and music without sound.

Supported by Dublin City Council, the Austrian Embassy in Dublin, and hosted by the Contemporary Music Centre, Dublin


Philosophy of Human+Computer Music Workshop
University of Sheffield, 4 July 2014

Human+Computer Music Workshop logo

We present another performance-informed composition at the Royal Musical Association Music Philosophy Study Group
workshop on philosophy of human+computer music. In a partially composed, partially devised performance an interactive computer application makes repeated direct quotation of the continuing live instrumental performance. The form and detail are not settled until the moment of performance. Like the earlier TCD conference presentation, this performance is based on strategies we have developed in a number of ongoing works in the 'Stops' series of pieces.


Composition in the 21st Century Conference
Trinity College, Dublin, 7 March 2014

Music Composition Center logo

Fergal Dowling and Michael Quinn present a joint paper/performance at Composition in the 21st Century Conference, TCD. On the theme ‘Composition as Performance’ we present a computer-mediated composition/performance which exposes an evolving relationship between musical material and its context. Using repeated direct quotation of the continuing performance the composition results in frequent elisions and re-orderings of the temporal flow. The work is based on strategies we have developed in a number of related works, especially in the ‘Stops’ series of pieces.


Mirrors of Earth
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 9 November 2013
Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray, 14 November 2013

Dublin Sound Lab, Mirrors of Earth concert, Project Arts Centre, Dublin

Photo: Mihai Cucu.

Kaija Saariaho's haunting chamber-ensemble composition MAA was originally conceived as a ballet; in Mirrors of Earth the choreography is replaced by a newly commissioned seven-part video work by Cork-based artist Ailbhe Ní Bhriain. Varying in forces from surround-sound 'tape' to septet, each movement is counterpointed by a large format, cinema-quality, HD video work projected above the performers.

MAA (meaning "land", "country", "world" or "earth") is one of Saariaho's first large scale works. Ní Bhriain's remarkable response in seven projected video works, combining filmed and computer-generated imagery, matches Saariaho's score in scale and rhythm and confronts the themes which permeate Saariaho's work – journey, distance, longing, memory and sense of place. The musical/visual engagement operates at multiple levels, in keeping with a composition which is not obviously narrative or goal-directed, and which explores a myriad of timbres through combined electronic, surround sound and instrumental forces.

Performers: David Adams (conductor), Bogdan Sofei (violin), Andreea Banciu (viola), Adrian Mantu (cello), Julie Maisel (flute), Cliona Doris (harp), Michael Quinn (harpsichord), Maeve O'Hara (percussion), Fergal Dowling (computer), Alexis Nealon (sound projection), Mihai Cucu (video projection).

Mirrors of Earth has been supported by an Arts Council Music Project Award, and with assistance from Dublin City Council, the Finnish Music Foundation, Cork City Council, the Finnish Embassy in Ireland and the Contemporary Music Centre.

Music, video, dance from Dublin & Bucharest
Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin, 8 June 2013

Dublin Sound Lab, Philip Conaughton, Theatre of Sound, Smock Alley Theatre Philip Conaughton performing Cătălin Creţu and Mihaela Kavdanska's Inner Dust (dance, interactive audio and video), photo: Mihai Cucu.

An inter-media collaboration with works by three Irish and three Romanian composers integrating acoustic music, live electronic music, interactive video and dance. Performers: Ana Chifu (flute), Maria Chifu (bassoon), Michael Quinn (harpsichord), Philip Connaughton (dance), Fergal Dowling (sound projection), Pairas Hoban (live electronics), Mihai Cucu (video projection), Cătălin Creţu (live video). Supported by the Arts Council and Ireland's Presidency of the Council of the European Union Cultural Programme.

Jonathan Nangle, *untitled (after Dan Flavin) (tape and computer-controlled lights)
Cătălin Creţu & Mihaela Kavdanska, Inner Dust (dance, interactive audio and video)
Piaras Hoban, *magic birth / magia figura (harpsichord and live electronics)
Sabina Ulubeanu, *...of tears and dewdrops Passacaglia (hpd, flute, bassoon, electronics)
Fergal Dowling, *Imitation of Christ (flute, bassoon and computer)
Diana Rotaru, Ani-motions (flute, bassoon, tape, dance, video)
*Dublin Sound Lab commission.

ReSounding Dublin
St Werburgh's Church, Dublin, 21 November 2012

Re-Sounding Dublin, organ and video projection
Photo: Mihai Cucu

Dublin Sound Lab invites four composers to write new works on the theme of 're-sounding Dublin' for the historic organ at St Werburgh's Church. Each composer has found a unique solution to this challenge, and in this programme the 18th century organ at St Werburgh's is recontexualised with 'tape' music, live electronic music and recordings gathered from the wider cityscape. The concert features specially devised video projections by Mihai Cucu. Preceded by a public discussion at the Contemporary Music Centre, Fishamble Street (6.30pm). The composers discuss their works in relation to the programme theme, Re-Sounding Dublin. Supported by Dublin City Council and presented in association with the Contemporary Music Centre, Dublin. Performers: Michael Quinn (organ), David Bremner (organ), Fergal Dowling (live eletronics), Rob Canning (live electronics).

Nissim Schaul, Harpsichord Swirl (multichannel fixed media)
Rob Canning, *53.342916 -6.269724 <-> 53.344252 -6.269788, Wed Nov 21 20:XX:XX UTC 2012, (for organ, secondary acoustic and bidirectional audio stream)
David Bremner, *Interior Designs (for organ and electronics)
Fergal Dowling, *Ground (organ, multichannel live electronics)
Gráinne Mulvey, *Streetorgsounds (organ and fixed media)
*Dublin Sound Lab commission

New Harpsichord Music
OPERA STUDIO, National Muzic University, Bucharest,
28 August 2012

InnerSound Concert
Photo: Sabina Ulubeanu

Dublin Sound Lab perform a programme of Irish and international works for harpsichord and electronics at the InnerSound Festival 2012, Bucharest, 28-30 August 2012. Dublin Sound Lab's participation at InnerSound Festival 2012 was kindly supported by Culture Ireland. Performers: Michael Quinn (harpsichord), Fergal Dowling (electronics).

Kaija Saariaho, Jardin Secret II (harpsichord and 4-channel 'tape')
Gerald Barry, Sur les Pointes (harpsichord)
Fergal Dowling, Sketch (harpsichord and computer)
Jonathan Nangle, dying from the moment it's struck (8-channel 'tape')
Jean-Claude Risset, Pentacle (harpsichord and 8-channel 'tape')

Music Current 2011
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 22 October 2011

Music Current concert photo
Photo: Mihai Cucu

Concert of interactive group works devised during today's workshop. Also works by Karlheinz Essl. Julie Maisel (flute), Adrian Mantu (cello) Roger Moffatt (percussion), Karlheinz Essl (live electronics), with Sebastian Adams, David Bremner, Rory Caraher, Jack Glacken, Andrew McGovern and Suzanne Walsh. Supported by the Arts Council.

Devised work I (computer-controlled mixed ensemble)
Karlheinz Essl, el-emen’ (percussion and live electronics)
Devised work II (computer-controlled mixed ensemble)
Karlheinz Essl, more or less (four computers, percussion, flute, cello)

Real-Time Composition Workshop
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 22 October 2011

Music Current concert photo
Photo: Mihai Cucu

Workshop participants devise two new works in a one-day composition laboratory under the supervision of Karlheinz Essl. They explore practical and theoretical issues relating to music improvisation and interaction with live electronics and computers. The participants – instrumentalists, composers, computer musicians and technicians – work in groups to devise a concert programme of mixed music for electronic and acoustic forces, and singers, to be presented in a public concert.

Workshop participants: Sebastian Adams, David Bremner, Rory Caraher, Jack Glacken, Andrew McGovern and Suzanne Walsh.

Music Current 2011
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 21 October 2011

Karlheinz Essl portrait concert photo
Photo: Mihai Cucu

On his first visit to Dublin Karlheinz Essl features in this portrait concert featuring works for soloists and electronics, trio and electronics and three improvisations by Karlheinz Essl using his own software instruments. Performers: Julie Maisel (flute), Annette Cleary (cello), Maeve O’Hara, (percussion), Karlheinz Essl, Fergal Dowling (live electronics),

Karlheinz Essl, Sequitur I (flute and live electronics)
Karlheinz Essl, Improvisation I (m@ze°2)
Karlheinz Essl, Sequitur IV (cello and live electronics)
Karlheinz Essl, Improvisation II (m@ze°2)
Karlheinz Essl, Sequitur XI (vibraphone and live electronics)
Karlheinz Essl, Improvisation III (m@ze°2)
Karlheinz Essl, blurred (flute, cello, percussion and live electronics)

Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, 12 April 2011

Dubin Sound Lab, Garth Knox, Paris group

Music for actor, viola, harpsichord and computer. Dublin Sound Lab join forces with violist Garth Knox and actor Bryan Quinn in a programme of real-time interactive electronics. Supported by Culture Ireland and the Centre Culturel Irlandais. Performers: Garth Knox (viola), Michael Quinn (harpsichord), Bryan Quinn (voice), Fergal Dowling (electronics).

Karlheinz Essl, More or Less (for computer-controlled soloists)
Jean-Claude Risset, Pentacle (harpsichord/electronics)
Luca Francesconi, Animus II (viola and electronics)
Fergal Dowling, Sketch (actor, viola, harpsichord and computer)

Octophonies II
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 23 October 2010

Dublin Sound Lab, Marja Gaynor, Octophonies, Project Arts Centre, Dublin
Marja Gaynor performs Karen Tanaka's 'Wave Mechanics II' for violin and tape. Photo: Declan English

Music for violin and eight loudspeakers. Finnish violinist Marja Gaynor performs two fascinating computer-mediated works by Irish composers Ann Cleare and Scott McLaughlin, together with Barry Truax's astonishing electronic masterpiece 'Riverrun', inspired by James Joyce's 'Finnegan's Wake'. Performers: Marja Gaynor (violin), Fergal Dowling (electronics). Supported by the Arts Council.

Ann Cleare, IRK (violin and live electronics)
Scott McLaughlin, Primes (violin and live electronics)
Barry Truax, Riverrun (8-track tape)
Roderik de Man, Spazio Piccolo (violin solo)
Karen Tanaka, Wave Mechanics II (violin and tape)

Octophonies I
Project Arts Centre, Dublin, 22 October 2010

Dublin Sound Lab, Michael Quinn, Project Arts Centre, Dublin
Photo: Declan English

Music for harpsichord, soprano and eight loudspeakers. In the opening concert Michael Quinn tackles two of the most demanding works in the contemporary harpsichord repertoire: Kaija Saariaho's mystical 'Jardin Secret II', and Jean-Claude Risset's stunning 'Pentacle' (both Irish premieres). Soprano Deirdre Moynihan delivers two virtuosic works for voice and tape by young Irish composers Ed Bennett and Judith Ring, contextualised by Jonathan Harvey's seminal electronic tour-de-force, 'Mortuos Plango, Vivos Voco', based on recordings of the human voice. Performers: Michael Quinn, (harpsichord),

Kaija Saariaho, Jardin Secret II (harpsichord and live electronics)
Jean-Claude Risset, Pentacle (harpsichord and 8-channel tape)
Ed Bennett, I Need This (soprano and tape)
Jonathan Harvey, Mortuos Plango Vivos Voco (8-track tape)
Judith Ring, Mouthpiece (soprano and tape)

The Late Harpsichord
St Werburgh's Church, Dublin, 28 November 2009

The Late Harpsichord
Photo: DSL

New works for harpsichord and electronics. Michael Quinn (harpsichord), Fergal Dowling (computer/electronics). Dublin Sound Lab is interested in developing the repertoire for our core ensemble and in June 2009 we invited composers to send us works for any combination of harpsichord, computer, and fixed media, of any duration and without restrictions as to age or nationality of the composer. From the submissions and proposals we received from Ireland, Britain, and from throughout Europe and America and we shortlisted works by Julio d'Escrivan, Nick Collins and Ailis Ni Riain. Supported by the Arts Council.

Ailis Ni Riain, 2 Steep 4 Sheep (harpsichord and tape)
Nick Collins, Suite with Interruptions (harpsichord and computer)
Julio d'Escrivan, reGoldberg (harpsichord and computer)
J.S. Bach, Movements from Goldberg Variations (harpsichord solo)
Fergal Dowling, Stops (harpsichord and computer)

Garth Knox, solo
St Werburgh's Church, Dublin, 26 November 2009

Garth Knox with Dublin Sound Lab

Garth Knox discusses Luca Francesconi's 'Animus II' (viola and electronics) at CMC. Photo, Jonathan Grimes, CMC

Contemporary music for viola and electronics. Garth Knox (viola), Fergal Dowling (electronics). Dublin Sound Lab is delighted to present this special performance of contemporary French and Italian music for viola and electronics. Supported by the Arts Council.

Gerard Grisey, Prologue (viola and electronics)
Salvatorre Sciarrino, 3 notturni brillanti (viola)
Karlheinz Essl, Vent Nocturne (viola and electronics)
Garth Knox, Viola Spaces (viola)
Luca Francesconi, Animus II (viola and electronics)

Garth Knox leads a discussion on aspects of contemporary viola writing with special reference to the programme for this evening's concert. This event is supported and hosted by the Contemporary Music Centre, Fishamble Street, Dublin.

St Teresa's Church, Dublin, 21 November 2008

St Teresa's Church, organ
Photo: DSL

New works for organ, computer, double bass and violin, with Michael Quinn (organ), Fergal Dowling (computer), Marja Gaynor (violin), Mercedes Carroll (double bass). Supported by the Arts Council.

Karlheinz Essl, Fontana Mixer (2004) generative sound environment after John Cage
Karlheinz Essl, More or Less (1999-2007) computer-controlled soloists
Peter Ablinger, Violine Und Rauschen ("Veronica") (1995/96) violin and CD
Mauricio Kagel, Raga (from Rrrrr......, 1981) organ
Mauricio Kagel, Rossignols (from Rrrrr......, 1981) organ
Karen Power, Cows, Coffee, Birds, Bees and a New Room (2007), double bass and CD
Peter Ablinger, Orgel Und Weltempfänger (1999) organ and FM-receiver
Wim de Ruiter, Whim (1997) violin and organ
Karlheinz Essl
, Sequitur-III (2008) violin and computer
Fergal Dowling
, Stops (2008) organ, violin, double bass, and computer