The Drogheda International Classical Music Series was set up in October 2012, by Pauline Ashwood, as part of an initiative to provide high quality classical concerts to audiences in St Peter’s Church of Ireland, Drogheda. With financial and in-kind support from the Arts Council, Louth County Council, Droichead Arts Centre and RTÉ, this endeavour is quickly garnering admiration from the classical community. Now in its third year, the Series boasts an impressive array of musicians from both the national and international stage.

As part of the January billing, the acclaimed Fidelio Trio is set to perform a beautiful programme of works by Saint-Saëns, Fauré, and Ravel. Renowned for their superb facility of sound, and remarkable interpretative skills, this distinguished group of players is made up of Darragh Morgan (violin), Adi Tal (cello) and Mary Dullea (piano).

As vibrant contributors to the ever-evolving musical landscape of Ireland, the Fidelio Trio’s solid commitment to the performance of a diverse range of repertoire has attracted critical recognition. Currently, the Trio holds the ‘artist-in-residence’ post at St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra — an appointment, which has proved immensely successful for both the ensemble, and the college alike.

According to Morgan this “highly imaginative” collaboration allows for “connections to be made across all levels of the College” from students, to staff and management.

He also highlights the “meaningful and real” interaction between the “core strands of performance, composition, education and out-reach”.

Morgan goes on to conclude that ultimately, “the residency, as any good residency should, has provided us with a focused space for the trio itself”.

During their fruitful tenure at St Patrick’s College, the Fidelio Trio has held two Winter Chamber Music Festivals with guest international artists in Belvedere House.  They have brought a number of visiting composers to the College, and have given world premieres of commissions by Irish composers such as John Buckley, Fergus Johnston, Seóirse Bodley and Gerald Barry, as well as including a trio by an Irish composer in every concert of their series.

When asked to sum up the ethos of the Fidelio Trio, Morgan
explains this as finding the balance between new and traditional repertoire, and always performing this with the same level of “commitment, engagement and passion”. Fundamental to their philosophy is the “inclusion of, and collaboration with, living composers”, which they deem “necessary and exciting” within their work as performers and recording artists.

Now in the final year of their residency at St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra the Fidelio Trio are set to assume new residency associations with the University of Birmingham, and St John’s Smith Square, London. However, they will return to Ireland in September to perform at the New Ross Piano Festival. With forthcoming appearances in Vancouver, Mexico, India and Morrison Hall San Francisco, and a recording project of Schumann Trios for Resonus Classics, 2015 is set to be a thrilling year for the Fidelio Trio.

This article also appears on https://medium.com/@EmerNestor/drogheda-international-classical-music-series-the-fidelio-trio-9068afb1d872