Cassiopeia Wind Quintet - Grand Canal Theatre

Cassiopeia Winds was founded in 2010 by five friends with a desire to dive into the glorious repertoire of wind chamber music of the past 250 years. At its core is a quintet of players whose members are among the finest in the country. Their performances are marked by sensitivity and virtuosity. Their passion, idosyncratic humour and their sheer joy of performing together is shared by the audience.

Their performances run the full and varied gamut of the wind repertoire from 19th-century to contemporary works, including Danzi, Reicha, Barber, Hindemith, Poulenc, Francaix, Ibert, Nielsen, Ligeti and Arvo Part. The ensemble presents the startling originality and the sumptuous palette of tone colours of the wind quintet and expands to include works for larger forces. They have a dedication to bringing the lesser-known works of this repertoire into Irish and international concert halls and festivals.

The ensemble also has a great interest in contemporary music and in supporting the work of new Irish composers. The Quintet gave the first performance of a new work by Sean O'Callaghan and commissioned a new work from John Buckley which received its premier at a Contemporary Music Centre Salon in October 2015 followed by five performances on tour around Ireland in the autumn/winter of 2015/16.

Cassiopeia Winds has had the great pleasure of collaborating with well-loved and renowned musicians Finghin Collins, ConTempo Quartet, Melvin Tan, and Lise de la Salle, among others. They have performed at the Galway Midwinter Festival, the New Ross Piano Festival, the Sligo International Chamber Music Festival, the Castleconnell Autumn Series, and the Joan Trimble Centenary Celebration. They have recorded three pieces at a live performance of the long running RTE Radio 1 programme Sunday Miscellany, and they performed live on Lyric FM's Classic Drive for the opening of the new Tower Records in Dublin. They have been regular performers at Dublin's Kaleidoscope Night and have toured Ireland twice with the generous support of the Arts Council.

Cassiopeia is a constellation in the northern sky, easily recognisable due to its distinctive "W" shape formed by 5 bright stars.

Cassiopeia Winds are:

Catriona Ryan - Flute
Matthew Manning - Oboe
Deirdre O'Leary - Clarinet
John Hearne - Bassoon
Cormac O hAodáin - French Horn

Copyright Cassiopeia Winds 2011. Photography by Emily Manning