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Our presenters

Our teaching staff includes many international prize-winners and principals of professional orchestras in Ireland. It also includes individuals whose names have become synonymous with music education in Ireland. These experienced teachers are passionate about working with talented students to unlock their artistic potential.

Lorna Horan

Lorna Horan is a musician with extensive international experience.  Her piano training began at the Royal Irish Academy of Music and she subsequently studied at the prestigious Chethams School of Music in Manchester. She is a graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music, and the Vancouver Academy of Music, where she undertook three years’ postgraduate work.  Lorna is also a masters graduate of the RIAM, where she studied with John O’Conor.
Lorna has been the recipient of many distinctions and scholarships for her chamber music and solo playing; she has broad radio and television experience and has worked on a number occasions with the RTE Concert Orchestra.  Lorna has performed throughout Ireland, the United Kingdom, Europe and Canada.
For the past fourteen years Lorna has been a Senior Examiner for the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She is the Education Officer for the Great Music in Irish Houses Festival and works on the Executive Committee of the Dublin International Piano Competition.

Lynsey Callaghan

Lynsey Callaghan was appointed Head of Research and Programmes in December 2020. 

Lynsey combines performance experience, pedagogical training, and academic research to facilitate inclusion, equitability, and a sense of belonging in a range of musical contexts. Following a degree in music education (Trinity College Dublin and DIT Conservatory of Music) and a master’s degree in performance (Royal Irish Academy of Music), Lynsey undertook an interdisciplinary PhD in Trinity College Dublin. Her output—academic scholarship and practice-related research—is thoroughly interdisciplinary and wide-ranging. She draws on a diversity of investigative methods that are associated with a range of disciplines, including medieval musicology, the history of music theory, manuscript studies, the history of education, mobility studies, post-translation studies, gender studies, and music education.

In 2020, Lynsey was chosen to take part in the Global Leaders Program, joining a cohort of rising change-makers in music who are committed to social justice through music. The international programme has furthered her commitment to and understanding of social entrepreneurship and justice, cultural agency, community development and teaching artistry. Lynsey’s goal is to lead RIAM in contributing to a systemic change in music education in Ireland so that more people are included in and through music. One of her most substantial contributions to date is Dublin Youth Choir, which Lynsey founded in 2017 with the aim of providing a structure of incremental and inclusive choral music education for the young singers of Dublin and the surrounding areas. Lynsey is also the Artistic Director of the Belfast Philharmonic Youth and Chamber Choirs and the Cross Border Youth Choir initiative. These programmes all aim to transform music education across the island.

Lynsey will develop the RIAM’s curricula to make space for new voices and new ideas. She will work to shape RIAM’s post-Covid response to substantial changes in music-performance education, the music profession, and society at large, and she is also looking forward to supporting RIAM's students as they develop their individual voices and create their own contributions to society through music.

Marion Hyland

Emeritus professor of Guitar at the RIAM.

Marion Hyland is the founding director and conductor of the now 10 year old GuitaRIAM . Her career span overs 30 years as guitar professor of the RIAM and she is acknowledged as one of the foremost classical guitar teachers in the country.

After a period of study with Andrew Robinson at the RIAM, Marion went on to study with Timothy Kain, and Gordon Crosskey of RNCM and subsequently took up a teaching post at the Academy in 1977, where she remained until retirement in 2018.

During this time, Marion tirelessly promoted the guitar through performance, master classes, workshops and chamber groups. She has had many teaching successes with price winners a Feis Ceoil, Young Musician of the Future and Yamaha Bursary , to name but a few. 

Mary Amond O'Brien

Mary Amond O’Brien is a passionate and highly motivated choral music facilitator and conductor who from the beginning of her career in 1997 engages regularly in her own professional development. Believing strongly in the innate singing ability of all children, young people and adults, Mary has worked with many non-auditioned singers and choirs who achieve high standards of performance while demonstrating the power of group singing to connect, excite, challenge and transform singers and their audiences.

Masters Dissertation May 2018

Owen Gilhooly

Owen studied with Jean Holmes at the Limerick School of Music and as a Peter Pears Scholar at the Royal College of Music, studying with international soprano Graziella Sciutti and Margaret Kingsley.  He subsequently joined the National Opera Studio, continuing his studies with Russell Smythe. Owen currently studies with Janice Chapman in London.

He represented Ireland at BBC Cardiff Singer of the World 2007 and has been the recipient of many awards including the Ralph Vaughan Williams NOS Award, Sybil Tutton Trust Bursary, Christopher Ball Bursary, West Belfast Classical Bursary, The Madeline Finden Vocal Award, Great Elm Vocal Award and bursaries from the Arts Council of Ireland.

He has appeared in principal roles with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Opera Ireland, Opera Theatre Company, English Touring Opera, Lyric Opera, Scottish Opera, Opera North, The Opera Group and the, as well as Wexford Festival Opera, Lismore Music Festival, Buxton Festival Opera, Les Azuriales Opera & Musikverkstatt Wien.

In concert he has appeared with the RTÉ NSO & CO, IBO, Irish Chamber and Ulster Orchestras and internationally with the Bournemouth and Tokyo Symphony Orchestras, the Royal Liverpool and London Philharmonic Orchestras as well as appearances with the BBC Symphony Orchestra in works including Berlioz’ “L’enfance du Christ” and The Bridegroom in The Vanishing Bridegroom, Bill Bobstay in HMS Pinafore and Konecký in Osud at the BBC Proms.

Significant performances include Robert in the world premiere of Luke Bedford’s Through His Teeth (Royal Opera House, Covent Garden), Emilio (Il Cappello Di Paglia di Firenze) (Wexford Festival Opera), Escamillo (Carmen) (Opera Theatre Company), Valentin (Faust) (Everyman Theatre, Cork) and Beethoven’s “Christus am Olberge” in Spain with Camerata Ireland, Handel Messiah Irish Baroque Orchestra & Irish Chamber Orchestra and Verdi Requiem at the Cork International Choral Festival.

His discography includes Weir: The Vanishing Bridegroom BBC Symphony   Orchestra/Brabbins, Hurd: The Aspern Papers Ulster Orchestra/Vass, Joyce Songs: James Joyce’s Musical Dublin RTÉ Concert Orchestra/Houlihan, May: Sunlight and Shadow RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra/Houlihan.

In recent years,  Owen’s voice has now moved into the tenor range with focus on lyric spinto repertoire. Recent engagements included Monostatos, First Armed Man (Die Zauberflöte) for Cork Opera House, Verdi Requiem, Gaston La Traviata, Remendado Carmen and Lensky Eugene Onegin, Sun in the world premiere of The Nightingale and the Rose and Borsa Rigoletto.

Réamonn Keary

Réamonn Keary was educated at the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Trinity College Dublin, the National University of Ireland Maynooth and in Vienna as a private student of Prof Leonid Brumberg.

He is a Professor and former head of the Keyboard Faculty at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin. He frequently gives lectures and workshops on the subject of piano teaching and learning; presenting, for example, the series Piano Keys on RTÉ lyricfm from 2003 to 2017 and the highly popular Key Skills series of workshops for teachers around the country every autumn. He regularly presents masterclasses and has been a guest teacher in Millikin University Illinois and Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna.

Réamonn is highly-regarded as a chamber musician and has performed and recorded with many of the country’s top instrumentalists.

He is closely associated with the RIAM’s Local Centre examination system, having served as the Chairman of the Senior Examiners for many years and annually recording the Local Centre Piano Albums. He is also much in demand as an adjudicator and was a jury member of the Dublin International Piano Competition in 2006 and 2009.

He is currently in the process of recording and editing a new edition of the piano works of Fanny Robinson, one of the RIAM’s first professors of piano.

Sophie Lee

Sophie teaches Tunes for Toddlers, Mini Maestros, Musicianship and Pianoforte at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She is an accomplished pianist and chamber musician, and is the musician in residence at Tallaght University Hospital. Sophie holds a MSc in Performance Science from the Royal College of Music, London; a BA(Mod) in Music from Trinity College Dublin; and a LRIAM in Piano Teaching. She is currently a PhD candidate in Music Therapy at the University of Limerick, supported by the Irish Research Council. 

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