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crash ensemble

Crash Ensemble is Ireland’s leading new music ensemble; a group of world-class musicians who play the most adventurous, ground-breaking music of today.

Crash Ensemble, an Irish new-music collective with international cachet and considerable chops. - The Washington Post

Founded in 1997 by composer Donnacha Dennehy, some of the most distinctive living composers have written for the group, including Terry Riley, David Lang, Michael Gordon, Louis Andriessen, Arnold Dreyblatt, Kevin Volans, Glen Branca, Nico Muhly and Gerald Barry.

Many well-known artists from diverse musical backgrounds have performed with the ensemble; Gavin Friday, Dawn Upshaw, Julie Feeney, Lisa Hannigan, Íarla Ó Lionáird (The Gloaming), Bryce Dessner (The National), Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire), Sam Amidon and Beth Orton.

Crash have recordings on NMC, Cantaloupe, Nonesuch and the Bedroom Community labels.

As well as performing throughout Ireland, Crash regularly perform internationally, with appearances in the last few years at the Edinburgh International Festival, The Royal Opera House (London), The Barbican (London), Carnegie Hall (NYC) The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Washington DC), Virginia Tech (Virginia), GAIDA Festival (Lithuania) and residencies at The Huddersfield Contemporary Music festival (UK) and Princeton University (NJ). 

Crash Ensemble are adventurous, innovative and ambitious.

What the press say

“Massiveness and impact are characteristics that the Crash Ensemble rarely lack”. - The Irish Times

the Irish new-music band that plays with the energy and spirit of a rock group”. - The New York Times

“The Crash Ensemble’s feverant performances would be a sensation at the Proms”. - The Times (UK)

“…you want to tap your feet, but two feet rarely seem enough”. The Guardian (UK) 

We have had some great gigs over the last few years…

2016: Airwaves Festival, Iceland

2015: “The Last Hotel’ an new opera by Donnacha Dennehy and Enda Walsh, Edinburgh International Festival, Dublin Theatre Festival, Royal Opera House (London)

2014: Performances at Nonesuch record’s 50th anniversary. The Barbican, London

2013: US Tour: Carnegie Hall, NYC, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington DC and Princeton University.

The Importance of Being Earnest, an opera by Gerald Barry. Derry, Belfast, Cork, Dublin. 

2012: Ensemble in Residence, The Huddersfield Contemporary Music festival, the UK’s largest international festival of new and experimental music.

For a full list of concerts see: