Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra to Perform at the Varaždin Baroque Evening Festival, Croatia

With funding from Culture Ireland, the wonderful Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra will travel to Croatia to perform at the Varaždin Baroque Evening Festival from 28 September – 1 October.

The Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra will present ‘Dublin Gaieties’ at the 2022 Varaždin Baroque Evenings festival, which is themed around Ireland, and will attract TV and radio broadcast coverage. Founded in 1971, Varaždin Baroque Evenings collaborates with internationally renowned musicians to create powerful performances with a focus on the music of a specific nation each year. 2022 will be the first year that the festival has shone a spotlight on Irish heritage and ensemble.

The performance will bring together dancers Steve Player and Kath Waters with the emerging professionals of the Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra under IYBO Artistic Director Claire Duff taking place in the gorgeous Great Concert Hall of the Croatian National Theatre.

Dance formed an intrinsic part of social life at court in Dublin during the mid-1740s, used not only for entertainment but for achieving and maintaining social status. The dancer was seen as a model of good breeding, graceful deportment and noble disposition. Aristocratic society revolved around the Viceregal Court at Dublin Castle. At the opening of the season, “known as the Dublin Gaities”, entertainments began with a formal ball at the Castle in the presence of the Viceroy & Vicereine.

Any young ladies being presented at court and launched into society, or noble ladies returning to Dublin from other kingdoms, were required to dance a minuet in order to demonstrate their skill in social graces. This professionally-led project allows the festival audience to experience a snapshot of Irish cultural history through the combination of music and dance advocated for in this instance by the next generation of Ireland’s professional musicians.

The Irish Youth Baroque Orchestra began in 2017 as a collaboration between the Irish Baroque Orchestra and Irish Association of Youth Orchestras supported by the Royal Irish Academy of Music. The orchestra is aimed at advanced instrumental students between the ages of 18 and 24 with an interest in historically informed performance. The intention is for all participants to perform on period instruments provided by the Irish Baroque Orchestra, Irish Association of Youth Orchestras and other partners.