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Northern Songs


Northern Songs

Join some of Northern Ireland’s best known opera singers as they take you to their home county or city and perform a selection of art songs composed by Northern Irish or Irish composers.

‘Northern Songs’ is a set of eight short films showcasing this beautiful country’s stunning locations, landscapes and historic monuments with songs performed by Giselle Allen, Doreen Curran, Carolyn Dobbin and Ben McAteer with pianist Ruth McGinley.

Whether you have visited these locations before, or perhaps might plan to do so once the public health situation allows, we are celebrating Northern Irish opera talent, landscapes, landmarks and the musical history of some of the stunning locations Northern Ireland has in abundance.

Watch soprano Giselle Allen, accompanied by pianist Ruth McGinley, perform ‘I Dreamt I Dwelt in Marble Halls’ by Michael William Balfe, in and around Titanic Belfast in her home city.

Watch mezzo Doreen Curran accompanied by pianist Ruth McGinley, perform ‘The Gartan Mother’s Lullaby’ arranged by Herbert Hughes on the Peace Bridge in Derry/Londonderry: home city to both Doreen and Ruth.

Watch baritone Ben McAteer perform ‘Star of the County Down‘ at Silent Valley in his home county, County Down

Watch mezzo Carolyn Dobbin performing Carl Hardebeck’s ‘The Song of Glen Dun’ at Glenarm Castle and Walled Garden on the wild and beautiful Antrim Coast.

Watch soprano Giselle Allen performing ‘Come, O Come, My Life’s Delight’ by Hamilton Harty at Belfast Castle featuring footage in and around the city.

Watch Doreen Curran performing ‘Danny Boy’ on the Derry Walls, in Derry/Londonderry.

Watch baritone Ben McAteer performing Percy French’s The Mountains of Mourne’ in Newcastle, in Ben’s home county, County Down.

Watch mezzo Carolyn Dobbin performing ‘The Blue Hills’ by Hamilton Harty at Dunluce Castle in her home county, County Antrim.

Ciaran Scullion, Head of Music, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented, “Northern Songs is a really special initiative from Northern Ireland Opera which beautifully fuses together songs and places throughout Northern Ireland, breathing fresh life into some of our most-treasured songs and performed by some of the regions most talented singers and musicians.  We are delighted to support Northern Ireland Opera and very much look forward to enjoying these wonderful musical moments in the weeks ahead.”

Naomi Waite, Tourism NI Marketing Director added: “We are delighted to support Northern Ireland Opera as they bring to life some of the most iconic sites across Northern Ireland through the exceptional talent of our local opera singers. These videos immerse viewers in our rich history, culture and awe-inspiring landscapes and showcase the giant voices of our local musicians. We look forward to more opportunities to support the arts community in Northern Ireland, like this project that truly tells the story of our giant spirit.”

The second series of Northern Songs is currently being planned – if there’s a song you’d like to hear featured, or a location you’d love to see featured, contact us at
Find out more in our press release here.


Giselle Allen

Mezzo soprano
Doreen Curran

Mezzo soprano
Carolyn Dobbin

Ben McAteer

Ruth McGinley

Creative Team

Martin Stalker

Film Production
Causeway Pictures

Red Apple Audio