Gormfhlaith Ní Shíocháin Ní Bheoláin receives Danijela Kulezic-Wilson Undergraduate Award for Exceptional Innovation in Research.

9 Sep 2022

UCC School of Film, Music and Theatre is delighted to announce that the inaugural Danijela Kulezic-Wilson Undergraduate Award for Exceptional Innovation in Research has been made to final-year Music student, Gormfhlaith Ní Shíocháin Ní Bheoláin, for her final-year Major Study work 'Field, Foinn agus Feadóga. An album of John Field's compositions for piano and Irish traditional tunes on the tin whistle.’

The Danijela Kulezic-Wilson Undergraduate Award for Exceptional Innovation in Research has been created by the staff of the School of Film, Music & Theatre in memory of their much-loved colleague Danijela Kulezic-Wilson and 2022 is the first year of the award's conferring. The prize is awarded for work in any discipline within the School of Film, Music & Theatre that is outstanding and shows exceptional innovation in research (scholarly or practice-based).

Gormfhlaith is a final-year student of Music and Irish, soon to graduate, and is an accomplished pianist, tin whistle player, sean-nós singer and set dancer. She holds many awards as a musician and as a poet in the Irish language, including UCC’s Donal ‘Doc’ Gleeson Award in 2020/21, the Piano Prizewinners’ Cup at Feis Maitiú in 2020 (the final competition for senior solo piano winners), and the Senior Piano Sonata competition at the same festival that same year. Gormfhlaith is one of UCC's Quercus Creative and Performing Arts scholars. She is also a poet and a writer, almost solely in Irish. She has received numerous awards for her writing and poetry, including recently Gradam Mháire Mhac an tSaoi. Her work has been published in Feasta, Breac, Tuathal and Washing Windows: Irish Women Write Poetry (Arlen House 2022). She is also involved in Irish-language theatre, as an actor, writer, and director.

Gormfhlaith's final-year work, Field, Foinn agus Feadóga, is an album of the piano music of John Field and Irish traditional slow airs and dance tunes that demonstrates the influence that Irish traditional music may have had on the compositions of Irish composer John Field. Based on meticulous research into the different printed collections of Irish traditional music and the historical times in which they were made and a deep knowledge of the music of John Field, the work is an excellent example of highly innovative practice-led research and research-informed performance.

Through this award, Gormfhlaith's work is recognised for the originality and innovation of its approach, as well as for its outstanding creativity and exquisite piano and whistle performances. The award also recognises the profound understanding demonstrated by Gormfhlaith's research of the relationships between Field's compositions and Irish traditional dance tunes and airs.

Gormfhlaith is now beginning a Masters in Early and Medieval Irish in UCC. Her research interests are especially focused on the symbiotic relationship between poetry and music in the Irish-language tradition in all eras. She remains very interested in the influences of Irish traditional music and Western art music on each other, as can be seen in the project Field, Foinn agus Feadóga. Gormfhlaith’s research and artistic ambitions are to continue to explore these questions, including performance-based approaches wherever possible.

From everyone at the UCC School of Film, Music & Theatre - CONGRATULATIONS, GORMFHLAITH, on this achievement! COMHGHAIRDEAS Ó CHROÍ LEAT!

Department of Film and Screen Media

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