Live electronics, by turns agitated and epiphanic, blending the ancient harp with cutting-edge technology and ambient recordings; there isn’t anyone else quite like her currently at work in Ireland.– Michael Quinn, Songlines Magazine
Úna Monaghan is a harper, composer, researcher and sound artist from Belfast. Her recent work has combined traditional music with bronze sculpture, sound art and movement sensors. She performs with harp and electronics, and released an album of her compositions, named “For” in 2018. She collaborates, improvises and performs with poets, visual artists, computers, writers, musicians, and others.
Úna has held artist residencies at the Centre Culturel Irlandais Paris, the Institute for the Public Life of Arts and Ideas Montréal, and the Future Music Lab at the Atlantic Music Festival, Maine, USA. Úna also works as a sound engineer specialising in Irish traditional music, and experimental, live electronic and multichannel music, a role in which she travels worldwide.
Her compositions have been presented on BBC and RTÉ television and radio, in theatre productions, and at international festivals and conferences, such as the International Computer Music Conference and New York Electroacoustic Music Festival. Úna was awarded a PhD from the Sonic Arts Research Centre at Queen’s University Belfast in 2015 and held the Rosamund Harding Research Fellowship in Music at Newnham College, University of Cambridge from 2016-2019. Her research examines the intersections between Irish traditional music, experimental music practices, improvisation and interactive technologies.
In 2019 Úna received the inaugral Liam O’Flynn Award from the Arts Council of Ireland and the National Concert Hall, Dublin.