RIAM Percussionist. © Colm Hogan, 2017

RIAM Percussion Ensemble

The RIAM Percussion Ensemble is one of Ireland's leading exponents of music for the medium. The Ensemble is directed by Richard O’Donnell, RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra's Principal Percussionist.

It has a strong commitment to presenting contemporary music to a wide audience in venues from Dublin's National Concert Hall to The Helix, as well as other leading venues around the country.

Since its foundation in 1998, the Ensemble has given the first performance of over 15 works by Irish composers including Rhona Clarke, Áilis Ní Riain, Ian Wilson, Karen Power, John McLachlan, Amanda Feery, Gerry Murphy and Jerome de Bromhead. The Ensemble has performed these works both at home and abroad.

The Ensemble has also presented the US premières of works by Irish composers, Eric Sweeney and Frank Corcoran, and the Irish premières of such international artists as John Cage, Edgar Varèse, Carlos Chávez and Marta Ptaszynska.

In addition to prestigious international collaborative programmes with NYU Steinhardt, Lehman College, the Aaron Copland School of Music, Queen’s College and Brooklyn College of Music in New York, the Ensemble has also travelled to Europe and North and South America to participate in a number of international music festivals.  In 2017, the RIAM Percussion Ensemble gave the world première of While the World Misbehaves (the Baby Will Hide in the Beehive) by composer Evangelia Rigaki and poet WN Herbert in New York, returning to Ireland to give its Irish première in Trinity College Dublin. 

The Ensemble has won the Senior Chamber Music Cup and RTÉ lyric fm Bursary at Dublin’s Feis Ceoil, broadcast on RTÉ Lyric fm, and recorded a CD of the music of Irish composer, Ian Wilson.