Categories: Press Release

The Walled City Music Festival has announced an exciting international line-up of guest artists for March 23-26, 2023. Solo pianist Barry Douglas, cellist Raphael Wallfisch with pianist Cathal Breslin, and mezzo-soprano Sharon Carty with pianist Fiachra Garvey, are all set to perform in Derry’s beautiful Christ Church venue in March.

Belfast-born pianist Barry Douglas has established a major international career since winning the Gold Medal at the 1986 Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition. As Artistic Director of Camerata Ireland, the only all-Ireland orchestra, and the Clandeboye Festival, he continues to celebrate his Irish heritage whilst also maintaining a busy international touring schedule. In Derry on Saturday 25th March, Barry will perform Schubert Impromptus, Beethoven’s "Appassionata" and Schubert’s iconic Piano Sonata in A minor.

Raphael Wallfisch, one of the most celebrated cellists performing on the international stage, will open the Festival on Thursday 23rd along with Derry-born pianist Cathal Breslin (also co-artistic director of the Festival). Raphael and Cathal performed the very first Walled City Music Festival together in 2009, so this will be a special occasion to open the 14th Festival. Their performance will include music by Brahms, Franck, Schumann, and Debussy.

Irish artists, mezzo-soprano Sharon Carty and pianist Fiachra Garvey join forces on Friday 24th, bringing a programme of beautiful art songs by Grieg, Debussy, Stanford and Elgar.

During the Festival, these world-class artists will inspire local young artists and upcoming Irish talent with outreach and education work, visiting schools in the city and teaching masterclasses throughout the week of the festival.

Cathal Breslin, Co-Artistic Director of the Festival, said “The 14th  Walled City Music Festival will be one of the most special Festivals so far. Like other Festivals, it is all about returning home, but now returning in-person and musically is especially important post-pandemic. The 2023 Festival represents my musical experiences coming together and amplified into a special series of concerts and community outreach. The theme of “return” is marked from the Festival opening with incredible cellist Raphael Wallfisch, who performed with me to open the very first WCM Festival in 2009. The theme continues with pianist Barry Douglas returning to the Festival to perform a solo recital. Barry needs no introduction but he has been a constant mentor and inspiration throughout my career. Our ongoing promotion of great Irish artists is represented by singer Sharon Carty and pianist Fiachra Garvey. It will definitely be one of the most memorable Festivals we have ever experienced in Derry.”    

Full details of the Walled City Music Festival programme will be announced in the coming days, so keep an eye on the WCM website and social media channels for updates.