Nuala Kennedy is a musician in the broadest sense of the word: teacher, composer, session musician, singer, and flute virtuoso. She is a vibrant part of Scotland's traditional music scene, having performed with various line-ups at all of Scotland's top traditional music festivals, as well as at many others around the world. She performs a range of traditional and contemporary material from across the Irish and Scottish repertoires, including many of her own compositions.
Born in Dundalk, Co. Louth, Kennedy grew up steeped in the rich history and sound of traditional Irish music, where she played in the award winning ceilidh band Ceoltoiri Oga Oghrialla. In 1995, Kennedy moved to Scotland and co-founded the highly recognized trio Fine Friday. As a member of Fine Friday Kennedy toured extensively in support of Gone Dancing (2002) and Mowing the Machair (2004), released on the Scottish Footstompin label, both critically acclaimed albums.
Kennedy's recent commission 'Astar:Journey' composed for Celtic Connections International Festival in Glasgow was heralded as 'breathtaking' and a 'triumph' by Scotland's national press. It featured an international line-up of musicians from Scotland, the States, and Canada, including composer Oliver Schroer, multi-instrumentalist Daniel Lapp, and singer Will Oldham (also know as Bonnie Prince Billy, the popular American folk-poet and hipster icon).
In August of 2007, Kennedy will be a musician-in-residence at Omi International Arts Center in New York. There she will work with 14 other musicians from around the world, and from various musical backgrounds to produce new collaborative works. There will be two performances of this music in New York City. In October a piece she has been commissioned to write will be performed at the 2007 Distil Showcase, which promotes new works by traditional musicians. She is also working on a duo album with cutting-edge composer Oliver Schroer, to be completed in 2008. When she is not in the studio or on the road, Kennedy is a much sought after teacher and she has earned several scholarships and various academic accolades.