The photo below is of Ellen O’Brien – a young flute player from County Cavan – playing a Martin Doyle flute at the Life of Reilly Festival in August 2013. Ellen played a selection of tunes at Flute Wednesday segment of the festival with Matt Molloy, Órlaith McAuliffe, Laurence Nugent and many others.
Ellen loves her Martin Doyle flute and feels that the tone of the flute is brilliant. She won the Ulster Flute Under 12 competition for dance tunes and slow airs, and then went on to the All-Ireland competitions and really enjoyed the whole experience.
Teen traditional musician Seamus Tierney won three titles at the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil finals at Derry in August, 2013 – two of them playing a Martin Doyle flute. Seamus, who hails from Lavey in County Derry, took first prize in the Flute 15-18 category and third prize in the Flute Slow Airs 15-18 category. He also collected first prize in the Tin Whistle 15-18 category.
Kathlyn Sheehy is a young flute player who plays a Martin Doyle flute and won the 2012 All-Ireland Under-12 Flute Fleadh Cheoil competition in Cavan and placed second in the 2013 All-Ireland Under-12 Flute competition in Derry.
Our heartiest congratulations to Kathlyn – well done you!
Kathlyn Sheehy sporting a well earned All-Ireland trophy and her Martin Doyle flute.
Here is Martin Doyle‘s video pick for October 2012 – the Grammy Award winning flute player, Rhonda Larson performing the hymn Be Still My Soul. (Note Rhonda’s harmonic singing while playing the flute in the opening moments of the performance.)
About Rhonda Larson
Rhonda Larson says she was born wanting to play the flute – where that desire came from remains a mystery to her. It was finally at age 10 that Rhonda first picked up a flute, a journey that has taken her to the farthest reaches of the world. Her ‘practice room’ was a high mountain ridge outside her family home in Bozeman, Montana, where the sky is endless and the breathtaking mountains cut through your soul. It is not difficult, then, to understand that the depths of Rhonda’s music comes from a place in her heart that celebrates the beauty of the human spirit, found most alive in nature. “I began to see that music has a larger role for humanity: that it can truly speak to the shared expressions of our human souls.”
Read more: Larson’s Story-Form Biography »
A very fine quote from Rhonda’s homepage:
“The dignity of the artist lies in their duty of keeping awake the sense of wonder in the world.”
– G.K. Chesterton.
Martin Doyle has just received a very kind testimonial from the renowned left-handed flute player Garry Shannon after Martin finished a keyed flute for him. These are Garry’s words:
“Martin is an affable craftsman in whose workshop time means nothing. He will generously spend hours discussing his craft. Despite his laid-back manner, he will not leave you waiting years for your new instrument. I have been recommending Martin Doyle flutes to my students for many years due to their tonality, volume and after-sales service. Last year, I finally took the plunge myself and put aside my beloved flute of twenty years for a new custom-made Doyle model and I have never looked back.”
More kind comments from flute players all over the world can be viewed here: Testimonials »
About Garry Shannon
Irish flute player Garry Shannon
Garry Shannon is the eldest of a celebrated County Clare family of musicians which includes Sharon Shannon (accordion) and Mary Shannon (banjo).
Garry won the senior All-Ireland flute title in 1988 and has since played with a number of respected groups. He is a member of the legendary Kilfenora Ceili Band which is based in Kilfenora, County Clare, has recorded three solo albums, teaches flute extensively and is co-ordinator of the Irish music residential summer school Meitheal.
Read more: Profile – Garry Shannon »
Ludwig von Beethoven and Elizabeth Petcu – hearing lose a challenge, but not an impairment.
And what of the Elizabeth Petcu / Ludwig von Beethoven connection? Well, there appear to be common threads running through both lives. Sure they don’t share the same age, address, flute maker or historical gravitas, but they do share a passion for music – the universal language. Ludwig composed his own music of course, and Elizabeth has performed many of these creations over the span of her professional career.
They also share a similar adversity. Elizabeth Petcu suffers from a condition known as otosclerosis, which is the most common cause of progressive deafness in young adults. Some consider otosclerosis to be the most likely cause of Beethoven’s deafness. Whatever the case, it is well documented that Beethoven went on composing despite near complete deafness. In Elizabeth’s case too, when her hearing impediment forced her into retirement from the RTE, she has kept up with her practice and performs wherever she can with an enduring energy, cheerfulness and enthusiasm that is fuelled by a great love for sharing her gift of music with others. Composers must compose, performers must perform. Audiences, large or small, receive the fruit of this wonderful synthesis.