Biography

Jennifer Walshe

  • Dublin, Ireland, 1974
  • Composer • Performer

Jennifer Walshe studied composition with John Maxwell Geddes at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Kevin Volans in Dublin and graduated from Northwestern University, Chicago, with a doctoral degree in composition in June 2002. In 2003-04 Jennifer was a fellow of Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart; during 2004-05 she lived in Berlin as a guest of the DAAD Berliner Künstlerprogramm. From 2006 to ’08 she is the composer-in-residence in South Dublin County for In Context 3. In 2007 she was awarded a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, New York. In 2008 she was awarded the Praetorius Music Prize for Composition. Jennifer’s work has been performed throughout Europe, the USA and Canada by numerous renowned ensembles. She has received commissions from organizations including Radio Telefís Éireann (RTÉ), Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR), Sudwest Rundfunk (SWR), the Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik, Darmstadt, Maerzmusik, Musik der Jahrhundert, the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Dresdener Tage der zeitgenössischen Musik, Wien Modern, the Dresden Semper Oper, ZKM (Karslruhe), the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Crash Ensemble, the Project Arts Centre and the National Concert Hall, Ireland, as well as commission awards from the New Music Scheme of the Arts Council of Ireland and the Scottish Arts Council. In 2003-04 Jennifer was composer-in-residence at the National Sculpture Factory, Cork. In 2000 Jennifer won the Kranichsteiner Musikpreis in Darmstadt, and received first prize in the SCI/ASCAP 2002 Commission Competition. Her works were shortlisted for the 2002 and the 2003 Gaudeamus Foundation Composition Prize. In addition to her activities as a composer, Jennifer frequently performs as a vocalist, specializing in extended techniques. Many of her recent compositions were commissioned for her voice in conjunction with other instruments, and her works have been performed in many important festivals throughout the world. Jennifer is also active as an improviser, performing regularly with musicians in Europe and the USA, and in her duo Ma La Pert with Tony Conrad. Recent projects of note include Grúpat, a project in which Walshe assumed nine different alter egos — all members of art collective Grúpat — and created compositions, installations, graphic scores, films, photography, sculptures and fashion under these alter egos. “Without a doubt, hers is the most original compositional voice to emerge in Ireland in the last 20 years.” — Michael Dervan, The Irish Times.

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