Musical Directors

Founding director – Anne Barry (2005 -2012)

Anne Barry is Director of Choral Activities and Assistant Professor of Music at Lake Forest College, Illinois since 2015. Previously, she taught as a primary and secondary school music teacher for many years in her home city of Waterford, Ireland. There, she was also the founder-conductor of two community choirs: the mixed-voice group, Waterford City Choir and the award-winning women’s choir Voci. Anne also conducted children’s, youth, collegiate, and adult community choirs in her native city and beyond.

In addition to her school teaching, Anne worked for the Department of Education in Ireland designing courses for pre-service and in-service teachers, taught as an adjunct choral director at the University of Cork, and visiting professor at University College Dublin and the University of Limerick. It was indeed this passion to work further with choral students and teachers alike that led Anne to pursue her graduate studies at the University of St. Thomas, MN, and at Florida State University, FL. Although now living in Illinois, Anne returns to Ireland each summer where she continues to work with the Irish Youth Choirs program, and this year while on sabbatical, Anne had the privilege of working with choirs in Ireland, United Arab Emirates, New Zealand, Holland, Belgium, and the UK.

Anne’s research examines the development of choral music in Ireland since 1922, and focuses on repertoire that is based upon, or influenced by Irish traditional songs and airs. Herself a keen arranger, her work is published by Earthsongs Music Publishers and Cailíno Music Publishers.

Fintan Scanlon (2012 – 2019)

Fintan Scanlon has been  extensively involved in the local music scene for over 20 years. He worked as a teacher and performer throughout the south east. He has recently changed career, but continues to perform as a violinist, singer and conductor in his spare time.

Fintan completed a B.A. in music in June 2007 where he received an honours degree from W.I.T majoring in vocal performance. He has also completed an M.A. in Classical string performance at the University of Limerick where he studied under Mariana Sirbu, Ferenc Szucs, Katherine Hunka and Bruno Giuranna. He has studied locally with Deirdre Scanlon and Teresa Costello. Vocally, he has worked with Anne Woodworth, Niall Crowley and Bridget Knowles, while also partaking in workshops with Antonio Santos and Wolodymyr Smishkewych.

Fintan has a particular interest in choral singing and has been a member of several local choirs over the years. He is currently a member of Ad Hoc Chorale and runs an a cappella group called Voicemale. He is a past member of (and soloist with) the Irish Youth Choir, and in 2011 was selected from within the ranks of IYC to form part of the inaugural Irish Youth Chamber Choir who concluded their highly successful tour in Christchurch Cathedral in Waterford. He has also performed with Chamber Choir Ireland on several occasions.

Catherine Sweeney-Brown (2019 – 2020)

Catherine grew up in Waterford as part of a musical family.  Having completed a performance-based music degree at Bangor University, Wales, she undertook her Masters in Music Therapy in Cambridge and subsequently spent over 20 years working in the UK as a clinical music therapist, based in children’s hospices, schools, secure care facilities, head injury units and nursing homes.  Catherine has a particular interest in early intervention and family therapy, and is a co-founder of Supportive Integrated Therapies, based in Waterford.  She is also the 2019 Artist in Residence with the Waterford Healing Arts Trust, based at University Hospital Waterford, where she is working to improve the sound-world on the neonatal wards and to support the babies and their families through music therapy. A flautist, pianist, singer and conductor, Catherine performs regularly with a variety of local groups.