Meet Chris Comhaill the first dlr Musician-in-Residence for 2023

Meet Chris Comhaill the first dlr Musician-in-Residence for 2023
Chris Comhaill, recipient of the emerging musician award, started his residency at dlr LexIcon this week. We sat down for a quick chat with him to find out a bit more about him and what to expect from his residency.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your music

I’m a guitarist and songwriter based in Dublin. I’m interested in a large variety of music and exploring music as a tool for fostering community, expressing identity and finding belonging. Currently I’m working on a repertoire of celtic and traditional music reimagined for solo guitar; the Dúchas project.

What are you hoping to achieve during your residency?

My residency will centre around the continued development of my Dúchas project. The project is as an immersive music experience of the old and the new - the traditional and contemporary. During the residency I'm planning to use digital technology to create new and engaging pieces and arrangements for the project.

I'm also hoping to present some of the work-in-progress at some informal performances during the residency, as well as presentation of the final work at dlr LexIcon at the end of the residency.

What do you think are the benefits of a residency like this for a musician like you?

This residency is an opportunity to have dedicated time and a professional workspace in which to develop material. It’s also a chance to receive guidance from industry professionals. Perhaps most significantly as an emerging musician it’s a chance to share my music and present my work within my community, to develop a network of support, to be inspired, to build confidence and to formalise my art practice in a fun and nurturing environment.

What are you most looking forward to about your time at dlr LexIcon?

Being able to not only introduce myself and my music to the community in the local cultural space but to get to interact with the public, the staff and my contemporaries, receive real-time feedback, and have that process shape my practice.

What inspires you to make music?

For a long time my practice was a very solitary affair. I found comfort in music but it could also be lonely and demoralising working in isolation. Now, being able to share my music through collaboration and through performance I feel enthused. As well as being meditative, I think music can be a vehicle for expression beyond words and language and a way to communicate and connect with each other. I find inspiration in examining identity and the concepts of heritage and culture and how artefacts of the past can be made relevant for the present and the future.

What is your favourite thing about live music?

The unique nature of performance as a one-of-a-kind experience and the energy that’s transmitted from performer to audience and back again. It’s a cyclical, symbiotic thing that exists only in that moment. It’s like a sculpture made of sound that’s created, consumed and destroyed all in one sitting.

Where can we hear your music?

You can hear my music on YouTube and Spotify by searching “Chris Comhaill”. You can also hear me live at a series of informal live performances at the LexIcon and at my final residency performance at the Lexicon Studio on June 1st. And if you do pop by come up and say hi!

Updates from the Residency

As his residency continues DLR Musician-in-Residence Chris Comhaill shares with us some of the work he has been developing at dlr LexIcon Venue, part of his project, Dúchas.

We're delighted to present 'The Rolling Wave', Chris' latest composition inspired by the DLR coastline where he loves to swim most days, expressing the connection he feels with the ocean.

Rolling Wave | 'Dúchas' Celtic Guitar | Chris Comhaill | DRL Artist-In-Residence 2023

Chris’ Celtic guitar project 'Dúchas' focuses on the development of new arrangements exploring the use of improvisation and digital technology alongside traditional melodies.

Raglan Road | 'Dúchas' Celtic Guitar | Chris Comhaill

The Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council Musicians-in-Residence Scheme is jointly funded by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council and the Arts Council and is managed by Music Network.

Music Network Residencies

We support musicians to develop their professional careers at all stages.

Every year we provide professional and emerging musicians with residency opportunities both at home and abroad. Our residencies give musicians time, mentoring, funding and other supports to assist the development of their practice and careers.