Dr Ryan Molloy


Gaeilge agus fáilte

Associate Professor

Logic House
(01) 708 3730


As a composer and performer, Ryan Molloy’s work has been performed to international audiences on four continents for over fifteen years, including major concert venues such as Lucerne Hall, KKL (Switzerland), Kölner Philharmonie (Germany), National Concert Hall (Ireland), Holywell Music Room (England) and Ulster Hall (N. Ireland). In great demand as an accompanist, he has recorded over a dozen albums and his repertoire spans numerous genres from genres from traditional Irish music to contemporary classical music, performing with the Chieftains, David Munnelly Band, Beoga, Hard Rain SoloistEnsemble, the Ulster Orchestra and the Irish Concertina Ensemble amongst others. Currently a lecturer in composition at Maynooth University, Ryan studied at the University of Oxford and latterly at Queen’s University Belfast where he completed his PhD ‘The Traditional Contemporary Dichotomy in Irish Art Music: A New Compositional Approach’ under the supervision of Dr Simon Mawhinney.

Ryan’s compositional work has won numerous prizes and has been broadcast both nationally and internationally on BBC Radio 3 and Radio Ulster, RTÉ Lyric FM, Radio 1 and Ráidió na Gaeltachta as well as on BBC 2, UTV and BBC World. Most recently, Ryan received a major commission from RTÉ Lyric FM for a new harp concerto, Gealán, as past of their 20th birthday celebrations. Several of Ryan’s works have also been chosen to represent Ireland internationally by the International Society for Contemporary Music, at the ISCM Musicarama in Hong Kong in 2015 and at the ISCM World New Music Day in Vancouver in 2017 and in Auckland in 2020. From 2012 to 2014, Ryan’s compositional work was supported by a BBC Performing Arts Fund Fellowship in association with Moving on Music.

In early 2017, Ryan released a CD of his piano works entitled Innisfail, recorded by award-winning American pianist Alexander Bernstein. Other recently completed works include 
a violin concerto for Darragh Morgan and the Ulster Orchestra, Gortnagarn II a commission from the Hard Rain Soloist Ensemble, Dúchann, a fanfare for the papal visit to Ireland in 2018, a new work for piano and tape commissioned by the IMBOLC International Arts Festival, and Ogham, a new work commissioned by the Ulster Youth Orchestra to celebrate their 25th Anniversary Year.

2019 saw the release of Ryan's critically acclaimed first solo album pianophony, and 2020 also sees the release of a new CD of chamber works, featuring the 30-minute song cycle 
for voice, flute & harp Buaine na Gaoithe performed by its commissioners, the Damselfly Trio (CH-USA). 2020 additionally sees the première of works for the Dublin International Piano Competition and the ‘In Tune for Life Orchestra’ (a ‘trad orchestra’).

Past collaborations include diverse performers and ensembles such as the Danish String Quartet (DK), Concorde Ensemble (IE), EXAUDI Vocal Ensemble (UK), Ulster Orchestra (NI), Composers’ Ensemble (UK), Hard Rain Soloist Ensemble (NI), Konvergence Ensemble (CZ), Franziska Schroeder (AT/NI), Carla Rees (UK), Zoë Conway, New Dublin Voices, Elizabeth Hilliard & David Bremner, and Nick Roth (IE). 

Ryan is represented by the Contemporary Music Centre (www.cmc.ie).

www.ryanmolloy.ie for information on other works, performances and recordings.

Research Interests

  • Irish ‘art music’ from the late twentieth century to the present;
  • Irish traditional music and its development in the late Twentieth Century;
  • Postmodern nationalist aesthetics in Irish art music;
  • Microinterval modality in older traditional Irish music; 
  • New compositional styles allowing fuller incorporation of Irish traditional music in the contemporary medium;
  • The examination of identity in contemporary art and the response of contemporary performers to ‘traditional’ material;
  • The place of contemporary composition in modern society;
  • Cultural contexts of improvisation
I am interested in hearing from potential MA or PhD students or postdoctoral collaborators. If you have any queries or proposals, please contact me at ryan.molloy@mu.ie.

Conference Contributions

  Year Publication
2017 Microinterval Modality In Irish Traditional Music - An Empirical Approach.
Ryan Molloy (2017) Microinterval Modality In Irish Traditional Music - An Empirical Approach. [Oral Presentation], Folk Music Analysis 2017, Málaga, ES [Details]
2019 A summary of recent performance and compositional practice in Traditional Irish Music.
Ryan Molloy (2019) A summary of recent performance and compositional practice in Traditional Irish Music. [Invited Lecture], Future Folk, Newnham College, Cambridge University , 05-SEP-19 - 07-SEP-19 [Details]

Invited papers

  Year Publication
2015 Traditional Irish Music in String Quartet Form: the fabric of 'Gealach Chríoch Lochlann'.
Ryan Molloy (2015) Traditional Irish Music in String Quartet Form: the fabric of 'Gealach Chríoch Lochlann'. Invited papers [Details]

Invited Seminars

  Year Publication
2013 A Survey of Recent Compositional Work.
Ryan Molloy (2013) A Survey of Recent Compositional Work. Invited Seminars [Details]
2017 Traditional Contemporary Music: Conflicts of Identity/Influence.
Ryan Molloy (2017) Traditional Contemporary Music: Conflicts of Identity/Influence. Invited Seminars [Details]


  Year Publication
2021 Sraith na Búille (The Boyle Suite).
Ryan Molloy (2021) Sraith na Búille (The Boyle Suite). Dublin: Composition [Details]
2021 Casúir ’s Cnaipí.
Ryan Molloy (2021) Casúir ’s Cnaipí. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2021 dlúthinneach.
Ryan Molloy (2021) dlúthinneach. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2020 Síoglór.
Ryan Molloy (2020) Síoglór. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2020 Arcady.
Ryan Molloy (2020) Arcady. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2020 Luasc.
Ryan Molloy (2020) Luasc. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2020 The Ballycommon Suite.
Ryan Molloy (2020) The Ballycommon Suite. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2019 Adeste Fideles Fanfare.
Ryan Molloy (2019) Adeste Fideles Fanfare. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2018 Tu Es Petrus.
Ryan Molloy (2018) Tu Es Petrus. CMC: Composition [Details]
2018 Béal.
Ryan Molloy (2018) Béal. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2019 Trí Amhrán.
Ryan Molloy (2019) Trí Amhrán. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2019 Gealán.
Ryan Molloy (2019) Gealán. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2018 Buaine na Gaoithe.
Ryan Molloy & Martin Dyar (2018) Buaine na Gaoithe. Composition [Details]
2018 Ogham.
Ryan Molloy (2018) Ogham. Composition [Details]
2018 Dúchann.
Ryan Molloy (2018) Dúchann. Composition [Details]
2018 The Mountains of Pomeroy.
Ryan Molloy (2018) The Mountains of Pomeroy. Composition [Details]
2018 Loinnir Laoise.
Ryan Molloy (2018) Loinnir Laoise. Composition [Details]
2017 Amhrán Fheilimidh.
Ryan Molloy (2017) Amhrán Fheilimidh. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2016 Be Thou My Vision.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2016) Be Thou My Vision. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2016 for Morton O'Leary.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2016) for Morton O'Leary. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2016 Violin Concerto.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2016) Violin Concerto. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2016 Gortnagarn (II).
Dr Ryan Molloy (2016) Gortnagarn (II). Dublin: Composition [Details]
2016 Death and the Post Office.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2016) Death and the Post Office. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2015 Meithealated Spirits.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2015) Meithealated Spirits. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2015 Irish Suite.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2015) Irish Suite. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2015 Innisfail.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2015) Innisfail. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2014 Clearances (III).
Dr Ryan Molloy (2014) Clearances (III). Dublin: Composition [Details]
2014 Bodhrán v.1.0.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2014) Bodhrán v.1.0. Dublin: Composition [Details]
2014 Seisiún.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2014) Seisiún. Composition [Details]
2014 Cantaireacht.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2014) Cantaireacht. Composition [Details]
2013 Concertino.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2013) Concertino. Composition [Details]
2013 Gealach Críoch Lochlann.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2013) Gealach Críoch Lochlann. Composition [Details]
2013 Salve Regina.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2013) Salve Regina. Composition [Details]
2012 Jolly, Slender Beggarman.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2012) Jolly, Slender Beggarman. Composition [Details]
2012 Between The Tunes.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2012) Between The Tunes. Composition [Details]
2012 Sliabh Geal gCua.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2012) Sliabh Geal gCua. Composition [Details]
2012 Innisfail.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2012) Innisfail. Composition [Details]
2012 For A Lone Piper.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2012) For A Lone Piper. Composition [Details]
2011 Séamsur III.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2011) Séamsur III. Composition [Details]
2011 Séamsur II.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2011) Séamsur II. Composition [Details]
2011 Gortnagarn.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2011) Gortnagarn. Composition [Details]
2011 Séamsur IV.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2011) Séamsur IV. Composition [Details]
2010 Third Epistle to Timothy.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2010) Third Epistle to Timothy. Composition [Details]
2010 Aisling Airt Mhic Cumhaigh.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2010) Aisling Airt Mhic Cumhaigh. Composition [Details]
2010 Séamsur I.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2010) Séamsur I. Composition [Details]
2009 An Seilgeoir.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2009) An Seilgeoir. Composition [Details]
2008 Sætre Brygge.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2008) Sætre Brygge. Composition [Details]
2008 Mise Éire.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2008) Mise Éire. Composition [Details]


  Year Publication
2015 Good Boy.
Dr Ryan Molloy (2015) Good Boy. Belfast: Media [Details]

Sound recording

  Year Publication
2021 Buaine na Gaoithe.
Ryan Molloy, Martin Dyar, The Damselfly Trio, Liz Pearse (2021) Buaine na Gaoithe. Sound recording [Details]

Honours and Awards

  Year Title Awarding Body
2013 BBC Performing Arts Fund Fellowship
2010 Winner - West Cork Music Composition Competition
2009 Highly Commended - Jerome Hynes Composition Competition

Professional Associations

  Association Function From / To
Association of Irish Composers Member 28-FEB-13 /
Irish Composers Collective Member 12-MAR-10 / 30-APR-15


  Year Institution Qualification Subject
2013 Queen's University Belfast PhD in Composition
2006 University of Oxford MChem
2009 Queen's University Belfast MA in Composition


  Language Reading Writing Speaking
French Fluent Fluent Fluent
Irish Fluent Fluent Fluent