Irish Chamber Orchestra

Thursday 3rd February 2022 | 7:30pm
Curtis Auditorium, MTU Cork School of Music

Mozart’s Serenata Notturna is one of his happiest and most entertaining works. It brims with comic contrasts creating a sound-world of its own.  Principals Christian Elliott and Malachy Robinson and their ICO colleagues present the world premiere of Ian Wilson’s Seventh Seal – a new concerto for cello and double bass, commissioned by the ICO.  Thomas Zehetmair’s arrangement of Anton Bruckner’s String Quintet, a brilliant Romantic work, is symphonic in scale but intimate in character, full of tension and passion.


€20 (General Admission) | €15 (Concessions & COS standard members)
€10 (COS concessionary members) | €5 (Students)



W. A. Mozart (1756-91)
Serenade No. 6, K.239 “Serenata Notturna”
Ian Wilson (b. 1964)
The Seventh Seal
Anton Bruckner (1824-96)
String Quintet in F Major, WAB 112
(arr. Zehetmair for string orchestra )

Irish Chamber Orchestra
Thomas Zehetmair Director/Violin

Thomas Zehetmair enjoys enviable international acclaim not only as a violinist, but also as a conductor and chamber musician. He is Chief Conductor of Stuttgarter Kammerorchester, Principal Conductor of the Orchestre National d’Auvergne and Artistic Partner of the Irish Chamber Orchestra. Zehetmair has appeared as a conductor and violinist with orchestras including Seattle Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Orchestra of the Eighteenth-Century, Budapest Festival Orchestra and Hamburger Philharmoniker. He was Chief Conductor of Orchestre de Chambre de Paris and Musikkolegium Winterthur, Artistic Partner of St. Paul’s Chamber Orchestra and Music Director of Royal Northern Sinfonia with whom he continues his association as Conductor Laureate.

In the 21-22 season, in addition to his commitments with Stuttgarter Kammerorchester, Orchestre National d’Auvergne, Irish Chamber Orchetra and Royal Northern Sinfonia, his conducting engagements include Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León and a residency as violinist and conductor with the Poznan Philharmonic Orchestra. With the Zehetmair Quartet he will tour Europe including performances at BOZAR, Brussels and Helsinki’s House of Nobility.

Thomas Zehetmair has an extensive and varied discography as a violinist, conductor and with the Zehetmair Quartet. His recording of the Paganini Caprices attracted a Midem Classic Award and his rendition of the Elgar Concerto with the Hallé Orchestra under Sir Mark Elder received a Gramophone Award in 2010. Recent recordings include Brahms Four Symphonies and Bruckner Symphony No.3 with Musikkollegium Winterthur. He received an Opus Klassik Award 2020 for his latest CD release of Bach Six Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin which was also selected by the New York Times as one of “The 25 Best Classical Music Tracks of 2019” and by Die Zeit as one of their favourite recordings of 2019.

The Irish Chamber Orchestra is Ireland’s most dynamic ensemble. Mixing traditional repertoire with new commissions and collaborating with everyone from DJs to dance companies, the ICO pushes the boundaries of what a chamber orchestra can do. These days, you are as likely to find us at the Electric Picnic as Mozartfest, but wherever we perform, the ICO delivers world-class concerts feted for their energy and style.

Each year, Ireland’s busiest chamber ensemble presents concert seasons in both Limerick and Dublin, embarks on two national tours, and makes a series of prestigious international appearances supported by Culture Ireland. Our Artistic Committee works closely with our Artistic Partners to devise exciting, diverse and innovative programmes, mixing standard repertoire with new work – often specially commissioned – from the best young Irish composers. This versatile approach enables us to appeal to music fans of every stripe while upholding the highest artistic standards.

The driving force behind our recent success is our Principal Conductor/Artistic Partner Jörg Widmann, a composer, conductor and clarinettist whose irrepressible energy and pursuit of excellence has enabled the ICO to expand its horizons, attracting outstanding international performers such as Thomas Zehetmair, Brett Dean, Sheku Kanneh-Mason Tabea Zimmermann, Igor Levit and Elisabeth Leonskaja. The last seven years have seen ICO perform at leading concert halls and festivals across Europe, the U.S. and South America. The ICO released a series of acclaimed recordings on the prestigious Orfeo label with another recording due to be released on Alpha Classics in the Autumn. The ICO was the first Irish Orchestra to complete a three-year residency at Heidelberger Frühling and is currently orchestra-in-residence at Kilkenny Arts Festival.

Widmann’s enthusiasm and commitment is matched by the orchestra itself, led by the ebullient Katherine Hunka, and comprises of 22 outstanding musicians. The ICO’s special rapport, forged by over 20 years of playing – and sometimes singing! – together, creates the unique sound that has captivated audiences all over the world.

The ICO is orchestra-in-residence at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at the University of Limerick, and is funded by The Arts Council of Ireland/An Chomhairle Ealaíon.