ABOUT Dublin Sound Lab
Dublin Sound Lab is a contemporary music project group specialising in electronic and computer-mediated concert performance. As well as presenting existing works, we initiate collaborations and use computer-based techniques to explore relationships between compositional process and performance practice, and to create new and engaging concerts.
Formed in 2008 by composer Fergal Dowling and organist Michael Quinn, Dublin Sound Lab has worked with many leading Irish and international composers, performing works by: Ailis Ni Riain, Gérard Grisey, Salvatore Sciarrino, Kaija Saariaho, Luca Francesconi, Karlheinz Essl, Peter Ablinger, Mauricio Kagel, Wim de Ruiter, Ann Cleare, Scott McLaughlin, Barry Truax, Roderik de Man, Karen Tanaka, Jean-Claude Risset, Ed Bennett, Judith Ring, Gerald Barry, Jonathan Nangle, Jonathan Harvey, Rob Canning, Gráinne Mulvey, David Bremner, and Garth Knox, amongst others.
Dublin Sound Lab has initiated collaborations with many composers and artists. In 2011 we invited Karlheinz Essl, on his first visit to Ireland, to develop new generative and interactive works for ensemble in collaboration with Dublin musicians and composers, and to perform the new works in concert. In 2013 we commissioned MIRRORS OF EARTH, a large-scale video work by Ailbhe Ní Bhriain to accompany the complete performance of Kaija Saariaho's seminal mixed-media work, MAA. In 2014 we commissioned PLACES & RESPONSES for the Dublin Fringe Festival, a multi-venue, dispersed performance, involving collaboration with Peter Ablinger, Gráinne Mulvey, Rob Canning and Piaras Hoban.
In 2016 Dublin Sound Lab launched MUSIC CURRENT, Dublin's annual festival of contemporary electronic music. The festival features guest composers, international performers, workshops, masterclasses, public discussions, new commission opportunities, and premiers of works by participating composers.
Fergal Dowling is a founding member and Artistic Director of Dublin Sound Lab. His compositions combine acoustic and electronic forces with computer-based interaction and sound spatialisation, and have been performed at festivals, including: Sonorities, ISSTA, Música Viva, Music Current, Japan Electroacoustic Festival, ISCM World Music Days, Future Sonic; and by ensembles and soloists, including: Garth Knox, Xenia Pestova, Zubin Kanga, Concorde, Projektgruppe Neue Musik Bremen, and notes inégales. He studied composition at Trinity College Dublin (BMus, 2000, MLitt, 2002) and York (PhD, 2006), and has worked as a studio technician, sound designer, and lecturer in music technology. He has received many research and composition awards, including the Elizabeth Maconchy Composition Fellowship and Arts Council Bursaries and Commissions, and has attended major international new music academies (IRCAM, Acanthes, Darmstadt) and masterclasses with Peter Maxwell Davies, Dominic Muldowney, Louis Andriessen, Christina Kubisch, Leo Brouwer and others. He has curated major collaborative projects, including: Real-time Composition Workshop with Karlheinz Essl (Project Arts Centre); Re-Sounding Dublin (Contemporary Music Centre, Salon); Mirrors of Earth with Kaija Saariaho's MAA and new video works (Project Arts Centre, Dublin); Places and Responses with Peter Ablinger (Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival); and Perisonic, an immersive audio-visual installation with Gráinne Mulvey and Scott McLaughlin (Music Current Festival, 2017).
Michael Quinn is a founding member and currently Co-Director of Dublin Sound Lab. Michael studied piano and organ at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, and organ and harpsichord at the Royal Conservatory, The Hague. He is a music graduate of Trinity College Dublin and King's College London. Michael has appeared as organist in The Netherlands, Spain and England and as soloist with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra. He has given recitals in St Patrick's Cathedral, and St Mary's Pro-Cathedral, Dublin and in St Michael's Church, Dun Laoghaire, as part of their summer series. With a particular interest in new music, he has premiered works by Fergal Dowling and Jacques Bank, and presented several Irish premieres with Dublin Sound Lab.
Mihai Cucu has collaborated closely with many artists, especially composers and music performance groups in Ireland, Romania and through Europe making many video artworks for projections during live music performance. His approach involves working closely with creative musicians to create a new unique video artwork that integrates with the music performance. He has worked directly with many composers, artists and groups, including: Gráinne Mulvey, Diana Rotaru, Seducant, John Feeley, RTÉ ConTempo Quartet, Fergal Dowling, Dublin Sound Lab, Irish Composers Collective, Association of Irish Composers, Elizabeth Hilliard, David Bremner, Béal Festival, Music Current Festival and Hilltown Music Festival. His work has been performed and exhibited widely at such venues as De Nieuwe Regentes Theater, The Hague; Porta Theater, Athens; National University of Music, Bucharest; National Operetta and Musical Theatre, Bucharest; Galway City Museum; and Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin. Mihai has been involved in many Dublin Sound Lab projects in many roles: as a creative artist developing new shows; as a video projectionist in concert productions; and as a photographer and video documenter of concerts.
Gráinne Mulvey studied music with Eric Sweeney at Waterford Regional Technical College, Hormoz Farhat at Trinity College Dublin and Agustín Fernández at Queen's University, Belfast. In 1999 she gained a DPhil in Composition at the University of York under Nicola LeFanu. She has attended composition courses in Ireland and England, in Schwaz, Austria, with Boguslaw Schaeffer and Marek Choloniewski, and at IRCAM with Kaija Saariaho. Gráinne Mulvey is one of the most widely performed Irish composers. She has been the recipient of many awards, including the Young Musician of the Future Award and the Macaulay Fellowship. Her music has been performed and broadcast internationally. She is currently Head of Composition at Dublin Institute of Technology and many of her recent works develop her research interests acoustics, electro-acoustics and live electronics. Gráinne has been involved with Dublin Sound Lab on a number of collaborative and creative projects, including: ReSounding Dublin, Places and Responses, Music Current 2016, and Perisonic.