Composition Competition for Young Composers 2017

2017 Composition Competition Winners

Martin Keary, Work: Bangalorian Civic Duty
Daniel Mc Dermott, Work: Sleamhnan
Alex Dowling, Work: Line Drawing
Emma O'Halloran, Work: Flashover

The selected works will be premiered at the 2017 West Cork Chamber Music Festival

Each of the successful works will be played through and analysed in the Young Composers Forum directed by Donnacha Dennehy on Saturday 1 July at 2pm. Each winning composer will be awarded a bursary of €500. 

3 July 14.00 Town Concert - Behn Quartet will premiere Sleamhnan by Daniel Mc Dermott
5 July 14.00 Town Concert - Aduno Quartet will premiere Bangalorian Civic Duty by Martin Keary
6 July 14.00 Town Concert -  Beara Quartet will premiere Flashover by Emma O'Halloran
7 July 14.00 Town Concert -  Skellig Quartet will premiere Line Drawing by Alex Dowling

The Winning Composers are: 

Alex Dowling is an Irish composer, digital artist, and performer currently living in Philadelphia, USA. His work focuses on the hazy space between the real and virtual. He writes electronic music and has also had instrumental works performed by the Crash Ensemble, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, orkest de ereprijs, Prism Saxophone Quartet and Mivos String Quartet among others. He has written music for laptop orchestra (after founding the Dublin Laptop Orchestra in 2011), theater, and his audiovisual installation ‘Bodysnatcher’ was exhibited at the Eyebeam Gallery, NY and toured many other countries. Alex is also a recipient of prizes including the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award and the Jerome Hynes Young Composers Award. He is currently completing a PhD in music composition at Princeton University.

Martin Keary is a composer and visual designer based in London. Having recieved a Masters degree at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where he was awarded the Craig Armstrong prize and the Patron's Fund Prize (Royal College of Music) for composition. During his time at the RCS, Martin has been awarded the Claxica International prize for his piece  'Herostratic' (for guitar and string trio). In May 2016, his large scale visual music piece, 'NEW' - for amplified chamber orchestra, electronics and synchronised animation - was performed by the Scottish ensemble 'Red Note' as part of the opening night of the PLUG festival  in Glasgow. In November 2016, his piece ‘Beat Fatigue’ was performed by Peter Brötzmann  in Dublin.
Martin lectures on the topic of visual music and can be contacted about this at He also has an active YouTube channel under the name ‘Tantacrul’, where he regularly posts videos on a variety of musical topics.

Daniel McDermott is an Irish composer, D.J, guitarist, pianist and producer. His music fuses elements of jazz, classical, world, minimal techno and electronica. His output includes albums, remixes and modern classical pieces. His classical music has been selected by the Crash Ensemble for Free State 7, Free State 9 , Free State 10 and awards include the IMRO music award. He was listed as finalist in The Lake George Music festival 2017.  His music has also been selected for Derry/Londonderry City of Culture. He has released three electronica albums; his third, The Lullaby Wars was released on Psychonavigation records. His music has also been performed by many international performers from the world renowned Oud virtuoso Marina Toschich to The Crash Ensemble. The Irish Times has called his music: “true experimentation” and the AIC new music journal has said it is music which contains “beautifully imagined details”.  His music has been broadcast on 2fm, Lyric Fm and various stations in the UK and Austrialia.

Emma O’Halloran is an Irish composer, producer and performer. Her work has been performed by Crash Ensemble, Concorde, orkest de ereprijs, PRISM Saxophone Quartet, the Dublin Laptop Orchestra, and the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, and has been featured at festivals including the International Young Composer’s Meeting, Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival, and MATA Festival. Emma is a recipient of the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award (2014), and is a prizewinner in the Wild Rumpus Commissioning Project (2013), International Alliance of Women in Music Search for New Music Awards (2013), and Jerome Hynes Young Composers’ Award (2012).
In addition to concert music, Emma composes for theatre, and performs with her band Games Violet, a duo of producer-performers that make hybrid rock/electronic music. Emma is currently a doctoral fellow at Princeton University.

To view previous winners, from 2008 - 2016, click here.

The West Cork Chamber Music Composition Competition 2017 is kindly supported by IMRO.