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Simon Aspell

Simon Aspell

Lecturer in Viola

A graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, London, Simon Aspell is one of Ireland’s leading viola players. In 1985, he and his colleagues formed the Vanbrugh Quartet, successfully auditioning to become the fourth resident quartet in Cork for RTÉ the following year. The Quartet won the London International String Quartet Competition in 1988, and an international performing career quickly followed throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas, at major concert halls, and international festivals, as well as the release of over thirty CDs, culminating in the complete cycle of Beethoven String Quartets, released in 1996. That same year, the quartet co-founded the West Cork Chamber Music Festival in Bantry, now frequented by some of the world’s finest musicians on the chamber music circuit. As a member of the Vanbrugh Quartet, he has with his colleagues dedicated his musical life to bringing chamber music to all corners of Ireland, and to supporting the country’s composers and young musicians.

In November 2016, the Vanbrugh Quartet were presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Concert Hall, "for the enormous contribution they have made to their beloved art-form of the string quartet and to the musical life of Ireland".

Since the retirement of Gregory Ellis, the remaining members continue to perform as The Vanbrugh, a flexible ensemble that can incorporate repertoire from string trio upwards. Recent collaborations have included explorations of the piano quartets of Mozart, Brahms, Dvořák, Fauré and Stanford with Michael McHale, as resident ensemble to the National Concert Hall, Dublin.

Simon has also had a successful career as an orchestral principal, guesting with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, as well as appearing as soloist and recitalist throughout Ireland and the UK.

A frequent guest with numerous ensembles, Simon has also joined his colleagues at the RIAM’s chamber group ACE (Academy Chamber Ensemble), performing regularly throughout Ireland.

Simon has previously been a Director of West Cork Music, and continues to be Artistic Director / Manager of The Vanbrugh Camerata.

Simon Aspell can list some of the world’s finest artists as chamber music partners including violinists Julian Rachlin, Vivianne Hagner, Rafael Oleg, Anthony Marwood, Priya Mitchell and Catherine Leonard, viola-players Nobuko Imai, Kim Kashkashian, Lawrence Power and Brett Dean, cellists Natalie Clein, Guy Johnston, Ralph Kirshbaum and Robert Cohen, oboist Nicholas Daniel, clarinetists Michael Collins and Jörg Widmann and pianists Barry Douglas, Peter Donohoe, Marc André Hamelin, Hugh Tinney, John O’Conor, Enrico Pace, Antti Siirala and Phillipe Cassard, the Borodin, Lindsay, Chilingirian, Panocha, Pacifica and Shanghai Quartets.

The Vanbrugh have been Artists-in-Residence at University College Cork, since 1990.

Simon teaches viola and chamber music at both the MTU Cork School of Music, and the Royal Irish Academy of Music, in Dublin.

Semester Timeline

Date

Jan Mon 16

Semester 2 commences

Jun Wed 20

Academic Year finishes

Jun Tue 5

MEBs

May Mon 28

Advanced Recital Competition final

May Sat 26

Advanced Recital Competition prelims

May Mon 7

Degree Assessments & Examinations

May Fri 4

Semester 2 Lectures end* (confirm BATDS)

Apr Thu 12

Degree Entrance Tests for CAO Applicants

Mar Mon 26

Easter Holidays

Mar Sat 24

Professional Studies 2 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Mar Fri 23

Degree classes finish for Easter Break

Mar Sat 17

School Closed for St Patricks weekend

Feb Sat 24

Professional Studies 2 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Feb Mon 12

Reading Week

Jan Sat 27

Professional Studies 2 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Jan Mon 15

MEBs

Semester 2 Lectures commence (confirm BATDS)

Jan Mon 8

Degree Performance Assessments

Dec Mon 18

Degree Assessments & Examinations

Dec Fri 15

Semester 1 Lectures end

Nov Sat 25

Professional Studies 1 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Nov Sat 18

Open Day for CSM Undergraduate Degree Courses

Oct Mon 30

Reading Week

Oct Thu 26

Conferring Ceremony

Oct Sat 21

Professional Studies 1 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Sep Sat 23

Professional Studies 1 (MA in Performance, Conducting and Composition, Year 1)

Sep Mon 11

Semester 1 classes and lessons commence for all full-time students

Sep Fri 1

Academic Year commences

Aug Thu 31

Registration for 1st year undergraduate and Masters Degrees

Jan Wed 4

BATDS Year 4 recommences

Oct Thu 27

CSM Awards Ceremony for full-time students

Sep Mon 5

Registration for Years 2 - 4 BMus, BATDS, BAPM & Class Meetings

Induction of MA/MSc in Music & Technology

Induction of MA (Performance/Conducting/Composition)

MEBs

Aug Mon 15

Autumn Examinations

Color Reference

Exam

Class

Holidays

Other

Semester Timeline

Date

Jun Sat 16

Individual lessons Finish

May Mon 28

Grade Examination Week

Musicianship Exam Fortnight

Advanced Recital Competition Final

May Sat 26

Advanced Recital Competition Prelims

May Mon 7

Chamber Music Competition Week

Apr Mon 9

Classes recommence

Mar Mon 26

Easter Holidays

Mar Tue 20

Classes recommence

Mar Sat 17

School Closed for St Patricks weekend

Mar Sun 4

Senior Recital Competition Final

Feb Mon 19

Classes recommence

Feb Mon 12

Mid-term Break2

Feb Sun 11

Junior Recital Competition Final 15:00

Feb Fri 9

Junior Recital Competition Prelims

Jan Fri 19

Term 2 Fees due

Jan Mon 8

All teaching re-commences

Dec Fri 22

Classes & lessons for part-time students finish

Dec Mon 11

Piano Accompaniment Competition Week

Dec Fri 1

Junior Concerto

Nov Mon 6

Classes recommence

Oct Mon 30

Mid-term Break1

Oct Fri 20

CSM Awards Ceremony

Sep Mon 11

Bands, Choirs, Orchestras, Drama group rehearsals commence

Sep Fri 1

Academic Year commences

Mar Tue 14

Application forms available for all part-time courses commencing in September 2016 (accepted from 9am)

Mar Fri 10

Open Day for part-time courses - schedule available from public office during February

Mar Thu 2

Senior Recital Competition Prelims

Feb Tue 14

Senior Concerto

Color Reference

Exam

Class

Holidays

Other

Competitions