Young Artist 09

Young Artists

Our Current Young Artists


Young Associate Artists 2013                                                                   Young Associate Conductor

Cormac Lawlor   Lynda-Jane Nelson   Kelley Lonergan   Gyula Nagy

Maria Hughes     Gemma Ní Bhriain     Margaret Bridge                                        Killian Farrell 


Cormac Lawlor



Cormac Lawlor is currently a 4th year BA in Music Performance student in the Royal Irish Academy of Music with Dr. Veronica Dunne and Dearbhla Collins (Repetiteur). He is a multiple prizewinner in Feis' and competitions throughout Ireland with awards such as Feis Ceoil Bass Solo and Cork County Council Arts Bursary.


As a student at RIAM, he has sung the role of Supt. Budd in Benjamin Britten's Albert Herring, David in Samuel Barber's A Hand of Bridge, Cadmus in Handel's Semele and Simone in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi.


Other operatic roles include the King of Egypt in Verdi's Aida, Kromow in Lehar's The Merry Widow, An Old Gypsy in Verdi's Il Trovatore and Baron Douphol in Verdi's La Traviata with Lyric Opera Productions. His concert works include Handel's Messiah, Bach's Magnificat, Vaughan William's A Serenade to Music and Bach's Christmas Oratorio. He has also participated in a number of masterclasses within the RIAM, most recently with Ian Burnside, Jane Brunnell, Roy Laughlin and Sir Thomas Allen. 



Lynda-Jane Nelson



Northern Irish mezzo-soprano, Lynda-Jane Nelson, is a Samling Scholar. She currently studies under the tutelage of Kathleen McKellar-Ferguson and has most recently graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly RSAMD) and holds MMus Opera, MMus Performance and BMus Honours degrees.


Lynda-Jane represented the RSAMD at the Junior Kathleen Ferrier Awards and has sung roles including Mother’s Voice in Tales of Hoffmann by Offenbach, Daumer’s Mother in Kasper Hauser by Rory Boyle, Innkeeper’s Wife in The Cunning Little Vixen, Mrs Herring in Albert Herring, La Duenna in Betrothal in a Monastery, Lucretia in the Rape of Lucretia and Dritte Dame in Die Zauberflöte in RCS productions.  


In August 2008 Lynda-Jane also sang in the opening concert of the Edinburgh International Festival in Kurt Weill’s Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny. Lynda-Jane was a finalist in the Thelma King Prize and the 2010 Northern Ireland Opera Vocal Competition winning the audience prize. Solo concert performances include Bach’s B Minor Mass, Beethoven’s Mass in C, Handel’s Messiah and Dettingen Te Deum, Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Vivaldi’s Gloria. 


Recent engagements include chorus in The Flying Dutchman with Northern Ireland Opera, The Magic Flute directed by Sir Thomas Allen, Der fliegende Holländer and the Pirates of Penzance with Scottish Opera, Bach’s Magnificat and Mozart’s Requiem in Canterbury Cathedral, Mozart Solemn Vespers and Serenade to Music by Vaughan Williams in the Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms and various concerts around the UK and Ireland.  



Kelley Lonergan



Tipperary born soprano Kelley Lonergan, was awarded a BMus degree with first-class honours from the Cork School of Music in 2010, where she majored in piano performance. She was also a dedicated vocal student and studied voice with Mary Mac Sweeney during her degree.


Last year, Kelley spent four months in Verona, Italy on an Erasmus programme as part of her MA in Performance at the CSM. Whilst there, she was given the opportunity to study singing with Taiwanese Musician of the Year, Chu Tai-Li and repetiteur of the Arena di Verona, Michela Forgione at the Conservatorio di Verona. On returning from Italy, she won four vocal awards in the Sligo Feis Ceoil, including the overall senior vocal bursary.


Kelley is currently an advanced vocal student at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama, under the tuition of Colette McGahon-Tosh and is coached by Aoife O’Sullivan. In January 2013, she played the role of Mrs. Grose, in The Turn of the Screw by Benjamin Britten. During Feis Ceoil 2013, Kelley won both the Mrs P.J. Geoghegan Memorial Cup/Gus Smith Award and the prestigious Cuisine de France Count John McCormack Vocal Bursary.  



Gyula Nagy



Gyula Nagy is a Hungarian-born baritone presently studying and working in Ireland. As a soloist he worked with Dun Laoghaire Choral Society conducted by David Brophy, and with the University of Dublin Choral Society directed by David Leigh. He sang in the Irish premiere of Schnittke’s Concerto for Choir with the Resurgam Choir directed by Mark Duley.


In 2012 he sang the role of Tancredi and David in the Opera Briefs at the Lir #1, directed by Conor Hanratty, he played the title role in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, directed by Roberto Recchia, at the Zézere Arts Festival 2012 in Ferreira do Zézere, Portugal and he also sang the role of the Bonze in Puccini’s Mma Butterfly with Lyric Opera, Dublin, directed by Vivian Coates. As an opera chorus member, he was involved in Lyric Opera’s Aida by Verdi, in the Wide Open Opera production of Tristan und Isolde by Wagner, Handel’s Semele directed by Thomas De Mallet Burgess at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, and in Opera Ireland’s Tosca by Puccini.


Since 2010 he has been studying in the BA in Music Performance Course of the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin. His teacher is Philip O’Reilly, his vocal coaches have been Andrew Synnott and Brenda Hurley. In January 2011 he won the Most Promising Performer Award of the Irené Sandford Award for Singers at the Royal Irish Academy of Music.


He has participated in masterclasses at the Royal Irish Academy of Music with Ann Murray, Sir Thomas Allen, John Elwes, Jorge Chaminé, Mikael Eliasen, Robert Dean, Grégory Moulin, Mark Maxwell and Robert E. Toft, and with Jonathan Lemalu at the Walled City Music Festival in Derry.



Maria Hughes


A native of Co. Wexford, Maria began her music career as a traditional Irish singer. She recently completed the BMus programme at the Conservatory of Music DIT, studying under Mary Brennan and repetiteur Mairead Hurley.


Maria has previously been part of chorus’ with Lyric Opera, Opera Ireland, Glasthule Opera and D.I.T. Ensemble. She has performed in operas such as Carmen, Lucia Di Lammermore, Don Giovanni, Tosca, La Boheme, L’Orfeo, Il Trovatore, Madame Butterfly  and Aida. To date Maria has performed the roles of Flora in La Traviata and Third Lady in The Magic Flute with Glasthule Opera, the role of Speranza in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo with the Yorke Trust, Public Opinion in Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld, Miss Jessel in Britten’s Turn of the Screw with DIT Music and Drama Conservatory and most recently, Mercedes in Carmen with Opera Theatre Company. She has also performed the role of Valencienne in The Merry Widow with GMS and sang the role of The Mother in extracts from Amahl and the Night Visitors.


Maria is also a founding member of Dublin Youth Opera Company which is a youth opera company that tours self written jukebox operas, raising money for Irish charities. Maria has recently received a scholarship to continue her studies, completing a masters of music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland beginning in September 2013.



Gemma Ní Bhriain



Mezzo-soprano Gemma N Bhriain began singing at the age of 10 with Áine Mulvey. She is currently in third year studying for a BA in Music Performance in the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She is studying with Dr. Veronica Dunne and repetiteur Dearbhla Collins.


In January 2013 Gemma was awarded 4th place along with the Dermot Troy Award for Best Irish Singer and the Dame Joan Sutherland Award for Most Promising Young Singer in the Veronica Dunner International Singing Competition. In the final she sang with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Patrick Ringborg.In September 2012 she was a finalist in the NCH Bernadette Greevy €5,000 Award for singers. She has won many prizes in the ESB Electric Ireland Feis Ceoil including the Young Cup, Contralto Solo, Vincent O'Brien Cup and Kitty O'Callaghan Trophy. In February 2012 she won the Most Promising Young Performer Prize in RIAM's Irene Sandford Singing Competition.


Previous opera roles include Florence Pike in Albert Herring with RIAM in January 2013, Sally in A Hand of Bridge in RIAM's Opera Briefs series in December 2012. In January 2012 she was part of the on-stage chorus for RIAM's production of Handel's Semele. She also understudied the role of Ino in this production. Gemma sang in Lyric Opera's production of Don Giovanni as a member of the chorus in May 2011. She has sung Carmina Burana with the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Chor under the baton of Rolf Beck at concerts in Flensburg and Hannover in August 2011.


She has sung in lunchtime and evening recitals in Dublin (RIAM, St. Andrew's Church, Ely House, Christchurch Cathedral, St. Werburgh's Church and the Mansion House) and Drogheda (The Church of Ireland). She has also participated in masterclasses with Graham Johnson, Lynne Dawson, Ann Murray, Patricia Bardon, Henning Ruhe and Tara Erraught to name but a few.



Margaret Bridge



Margaret Bridge is currently studying performance full-time in the Royal Irish Academy of Music under Virginia Kerr, having previously completed a degree in Music with first class honours in Trinity College Dublin. Concert appearances include Handel’s Messiah with DU Choral Society in 2012 and Margaret made her operatic debut as Lady Billows in RIAM production of Britten’s Albert Herring in January 2013. In May 2013 she was part of the chorus for Opera Theatre Company's Carmen.  She has enjoyed a successful season at this year’s Feis Ceoil, where she won the Plunkett Green, came second in the Dermot Troy cup for Oratorio and was finalist in the Dramatic cup.



Killian Farrell - Young Associate Conductor 2012



Killian Farrell is currently a first year student in Trinity College, Dublin, where he is studying music. A multiple prizewinner for both piano and organ, he studies with Mary Lennon and Una Russell in the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. He also studies with repetiteur Brenda Hurley.


His academic achievements include the Louise O’Connell Award for the highest mark in Junior Certificate Music (2009). He is the musical director of the Jubilate Choir, with whom he made his professional conducting debut in April 2011 in a performance of Bach’s St. John Passion, leading a cast of soloists headed by renowned baroque specialist John Elwes.


In September 2012 Killian was invited to conduct the benefit concert for the Friends of the Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition, performing with singers including leading Irish mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught. Upcoming conducting engagements include Britten’s The Turn of the Screw for DIT.