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Gemma Ni Bhriain
Media Release 1 August 2014

Mezzo-soprano Gemma Ní Bhriain wins the Bernadette Greevy Bursary Award 2014

The National Concert Hall is delighted to announce young Irish mezzo-soprano Gemma Ní Bhriain from Dublin as the winner of The Bernadette Greevy Bursary Award for 2014. As overall winner, Gemma receives a bursary of 5,000 euro towards her singing career as well as the opportunity to perform a solo recital at National Concert Hall in 2015.

The judges - soprano, Ailish Tynan; bass-baritone, Ian Caddy and Simon Taylor, CEO of the National Concert Hall - were unanimous in their decision to award Gemma the Bursary for this year and commended all entrants for the high standard of auditions.

Currently in her final year of the RIAM BA in Music Performance Degree with Veronica Dunne and repetiteur Dearbhla Collins, Gemma is also a member of Opera Theatre Company’s Young Associate Artists' Programme. She has recently returned from China where she performed as soloist with the International School’s Choral Music Society, performing Haydn's Nelson Mass in The Forbidden City Concert Hall, Beijing and later this year she will be joining the Young Artist Programme at Opéra Bastille, Paris.

Her recent engagements include Elgar's Sea Pictures with the RIAM Symphony Orchestra in the National Concert Hall and in June she performed in the role of one of Jenny's Girls in Kurt Weill's The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny with Rough Magic and OTC.  She has performed as guest soloist with the RTÉ NSO and has been a soloist with the RIAM Symphony Orchestra, performing Handel's Messiah and Vaughan-William's Serenade to Music.

Gemma has also been busy on the competition circuit having secured the Dermot Troy Award for Best Irish Singer and the Dame Joan Sutherland Award for Most Promising Young Singer in the Veronica Dunne International Singing Competition. She also participated in the International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition in Amsterdam, where she was awarded the Wil Keune Prize for a Young Singer of Real Potential.

Established in 2010 by The National Concert Hall and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to support and provide performance opportunities for young Irish singers, the award also honours the late Irish mezzo-soprano and opera festival director Dr. Bernadette Greevy. Former winners of the National Concert Hall’s Bernadette Greevy Bursary Award are soprano, Jennifer Davis 2013*, mezzo-soprano Rachel Kelly in 2012, Northern Irish soprano Aoife Miskelly, in 2011 and Kerry native Gavan Ring (baritone) in 2010.

(*Jennifer Davis will give her Bernadette Greevy Bursary Award recital at the National Concert Hall on Tuesday 4 November 2014 at 8pm, accompanied by Aoife O’Sullivan, piano.) Tickets: €15 (€13 Concessions) Friends of the National Concert Hall and Young Maestros €12.50) on Tel: 01 417 00 00 or www.nch.ie

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For further information please contact: Sinead Doyle, Marketing and PR Manager, the National Concert Hall, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2. Tel: 01 417 00 57 or E-mail: sinead.doyle@nch.ie