Past Featured Soloists

Michael Dooley

Michael Dooley 2



Michael Dooley is a graduate of the Waterford Institute and of Trinity College , Dublin. He began his brass and woodwind studies with Tommy Joyce and continued under Martin Prynn and Professor J M Thome. Michael is a regular performer with the RTE Concert Orchestra and has played both the Mozart Bassoon Concerto and the Stamitz Double Concerto for Clarinet and Bassoon. In 2002 he gave the premiere of Tom Cullivan's Meditation for Bassoon and Orchestra with the Cork Symphony Orchestra conducted by Helen Sheehan. The following year at a concert in Taibdhearch na Gaillimhe he premiered the composer's First Sonata for Bassoon and Piano with Elena Gekker. 

He is a founder of the Limerick Wind Octet and is also on the teaching staff of the Limerick Municipal School of Music. As well as conducting Galway Youth Orchestra Michael has conducted St. Patrick's Brass Band for a number of years. 

Currently, Michael is performing with the Oirbsen Chamber Trio alongside Joanne Cater(flute) and Elena Gekker (piano)in association with local composer Tom Cullivan.


Diane Daly

Diane Daly copy

Diane is one of Ireland’s finest violinists and has toured the world with a number of prestigious ensembles including The Academy of St Martin in the Fields, The European Union Chamber Orchestra and many others.  She has been a member of the Irish Chamber Orchestra since 1998.

In other genres she has performed alongside and recorded with Sir Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart, Bono and the Corrs, Shania Twain and Katie Melua. She recently lead the Irish Chamber Orchestra’s New Years Eve collaboration with Dolores O’Riordan and performed in December with Declan O Rourke. She is also a member of jazz and soul ensembles and has performed at festivals across Europe. Recent BBC recordings include Contemporary Jazz with the Brian Irvine Ensemble and improvisations over Leonard Cohen songs with Liam O Maonlai.

Diane has always blended her performance career with community and education work. She trained as an animateur in 2003. She trained in Kodaly and Dalcroze methodologies at the RNCM, and has facilitated many cross sectoral arts projects, including an Arts Council UK programme in Holloway Prison.


She has directed and devised the Irish Chamber Orchestra’s Music Factory community project since 2006.

In 2007 she set up ‘Music in the Glen’, based in Killaloe Co. Clare and is in charge of the organisation’s pre-instrumental music workshops, string groups and community ensembles.

She is artistic director and co-founder of the annual Feile Eile Children’s Arts festival in Killaloe.

Nicola Sweeney

nicola sweeneyNicola Sweeney, illustrious violinist and assistant leader of the Irish Chamber Orchestra is our soloist in Bruch’s exuberant masterpiece, Violin Concert No. 1 in G minor. Nicola has previously appeared as soloist with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Irish Chamber Orchestra, RTÉ Concert Orchestra and the Orchestra of St. Cecilia. She has played concertos throughout Europe, Africa and South America. 

Dublin born Nicola Sweeney studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London with David Takeno. She graduated with a first class honours degree and having won all seven violin competitons there, including the concerto prize for her performance of Brahms violin concerto which she played with the Symphony Orchestra.

Nicola has performed as soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, the R.T.E concert orchestra and the Orchestra of St Cecilia as well as the Irish Chamber Orchestra, European Union Chamber Orchestra and Belgrade Strings. She also plays principal 2nd with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra as well as directing the London Irish Camerata and Euco.

Nicola has been assistant leader of the Irish Chamber Orchestra for ten years and she loves playing chamber music with her ICO colleagues as well as with the Nash ensemble. She does a lot of projects with the LSO including education work and also teaches in Brighton College. Nicola lives by the sea, with Ben and their two children.

Anna Phoebe


Anna Phoebe is a London based violinist born in Hamburg, Germany. After studying classical violin up to the age of 18, gaining Grade 8 distinction and playing in National Youth Orchestra & Camerata Scotland, Anna studied politics at the Lonon School of Economics. While studying, she became involved in the London music scene.

For the last ten years Anna has forged an international career, touring extensively around the world, from performing solo at Royal weddings in the Middle East to touring arenas across the USA with rock bands. From 2004-10 Anna was the string director and soloist for the American multi-platinum selling Trans Siberian Orchestra. Among a long list of credits, she has toured as guest soloist for Jethro Tull, as violinist and keyboardist for Roxy Music, and is currently violinist for Jon Lord (Deep Purple).

Anna also performs live with her own rock band, with whom she is recording her third album. For more details go to 

Stuart O'Sullivan

Stuart O Sullivan

Stuart O'Sullivan is one of Ireland’s most well known and successful pianists. He was born in Dublin, and completed a degree in English Literature at Trinity College Dublin before opting for a career in music.

He studied at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, and later in Italy, where his teachers included the world-renowned Russian pianist Lazar Berman. During his years as a student he was the winner of a great many prizes and scholarships, including more than twenty first prizes at national music competitions in Ireland, the award of outstanding student of the year at the RIAM, first prize at the RTE Musician of the Future (Chamber Music Category), The Brennan Prize at the Dublin International Piano Competition, and the prestigious Italian Government Scholarship. 

Stuart O’Sullivan has performed extensively as a recitalist throughout Ireland, as well as in many other European countries. He has appeared as concerto soloist with both the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland and the RTE Concert Orchestra. He has made many radio and television broadcasts on RTE, as well as the BBC, and also Dutch, German and Italian radio stations.

As a pianist, he has a large and varied repertoire, ranging from Bach through the sonatas of the Viennese Classical Masters, to the great Romantic masterworks of Chopin, Schumann, Liszt and Rachmaninov.