Biography

Irish musician sølstrek (Sinead Hayes) is a multi-instrumentalist, composer and conductor living in Galway, West of Ireland.

She completed her BMus in violin and composition at City University, London and her MMus in conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester. Before moving back to Ireland in 2018, Sinead lived in London, Manchester and Berlin.  Experiencing the cultural life of these cities shaped her musical aesthetic forever! For details of sølstrek's conducting activities please visit www.sineadhayes.net.

As a conductor sølstrek (Sinead Hayes) is emerging as one of Ireland's leading interpreters of contemporary music and opera, with a particular interest in the work of emerging and established Irish composers. The 2019/20 season was her sixth as conductor of the Hard Rain SoloistEnsemble (HRSE) in Belfast. In the 19/20 season she worked with Crash Ensemble and Opera Collective Ireland conducting the premiere performances of Raymond Deane’s new opera Vagabones. She returned to the RTE Concert Orchestra in August 2019 to conduct the Irish National Opera Studio Gala. In November 2019 she made her Ulster Orchestra debut conducting the orchestra in 7 educational concerts across Northern Ireland. 

Then came COVID-19, and all performances were cancelled, including a new opera by Elaine Agnew (co-production between Irish National Opera & Galway European Capital of Culture 2020) which Sinead was to conduct. 

The advent of lockdown brought about the discovery of a world of sample libraries, recording tools, and sound design, which unlocked a whole new way of working.

Fusing live elements of piano/keyboard/fiddle/whistles with contemporary sounds and beats, sølstrek has been honing a contemporary sound, which draws on the orchestral, ensemble and operatic music she has conducted over the years, as well as her deep roots in Irish traditional music.

Through her collaborations with noted theatre/opera directors such as Caitriona McLaughlin (The Chronic Identity Crisis of Pamplemousse, This Hostel Life ), Ben Barnes (Vagabones, Madama Butterfly), Walter Sutcliffe (Sweeney Todd, Threepenny Opera) and Enda Walsh (Bluebeard's Castle, The Second Violinist) sølstrek has honed her instinctive feel for how music underpins visual drama.

She brings this experience to her compositional work, and draws on her extensive first-hand knowledge of orchestral, contemporary and folk music to craft the perfect music for the project in hand.

If she can be a part of your plan to change the world through music, she'd love to hear from you!