John O’Brien

(b. 1979)


John O'Brien is a composer, conductor and director from Cork.

Compositions include: the operas Morrígan (which will premiere in July 2022 at Cork Opera House), and The Nightingale and the Rose (which premiered with an Irish tour in 2018); settings of the poems Easter 1916 (premiered by Fiona Shaw and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra) and Pluto's Vision of Heaven (premiered by Cónal Creedon and the Cork Opera House Concert Orchestra); the orchestral Lullaby for a City (in a Time of Pandemic) (premiered at Cork Midsummer Festival); a song cycle Lilith for jazz singer Karen Underwood; scores for the feature films Tree Keeper and Shem the Penman Sings Again (premiered at the Galway Film Fleadh); music for the plays Heart of a Dog (co-composed with Peter Power), The Cordelia Dream, The Four Face Liar, Levin & Levin, Sisters of the Rising and Lovers; as well as other short films, choral works, piano pieces, a symphony, a string quartet, and numerous operatic, choral and orchestral arrangements.

John is currently working on a new symphony, thanks to an Arts Council music bursary, and his new string quartet Ecclesiastes will premiere at the Cork Midsummer Festival in June 2022.
As a conductor and/or director, John has worked on over fifty different productions of opera and musical theatre in Ireland, UK and Canada, and has toured across Europe, Japan and China.
His website with videos, photos and recordings is