Alumni Spotlight

Aoife Miskelly - Soprano

31 Jul
Aoife Miskelly

Aoife Miskelly is a Northern Irish soprano who completed a BMus at UCC before training at the Royal Academy Opera as a Sickle Foundation Scholar. Her career as a full time opera singer has seen her perform in The Royal Opera House Muscat (as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady), the Cologne Opera House, Aix-en-Provence Festival and in the UK and Ireland. Aoife looks back on her time at UCC and how she went from singing in the Honan Chapel to performing on the world’s greatest stages.

Course/subjects studied in University College Cork:

During Year 1 I studied for a BA reading Music, Spanish and Italian but then swapped to the BMus from year 2 to focus solely on music. I was a cellist back then but always wanted to sing. By the time I reached my fourth year final recital, I did half of the recital through 'cello, the other half singing.

Best memory of UCC:

The friendships made. Even though we are now spread around the globe (London, New York, Texas, Cork, Roscommon lol!) the friendships have never dimmed over the ahem, 13 years since graduation.

How has your time at UCC helped you to get to where you are now?

UCC gave me the opportunity to start singing and I loved the variety of genres that could be studied when I was a student there. One could try their hand at jazz, baroque, sean nós, opera, and art song to name a few. These were the very first group classes I had in classical singing which encouraged me to then pursue postgraduate study at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where I gained a Masters in Vocal Performance and subsequently a Masters in Opera. I've now been working as a full time opera singer since 2012 and it is such a varied and wonderful career. I'm lucky enough to have sung in places such as Japan, The Royal Opera House Muscat (as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady), Germany - where I worked for 4 years full-time at the Cologne Opera House, France, and of course at home in the UK and Ireland.

What is your advice to current UCC students?

Enjoy every moment. Enrich yourself in campus life and treasure your time there as it goes by in a flash!

What person/people at UCC had the most positive influence on you?

Our friendship group.

Were you involved in any Clubs or Societies?

Yes, I was a member of UCC Choral Society and we undertook two foreign trips to compete at festivals in Budapest and Italy. I also attended the odd step aerobics class and sang at the Honan Chapel.

Favourite UCC legend or superstition:

The only one I can remember is about crossing the quad!

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