Eileen Gannon has been lighting up the St. Louis music scene for many years. Eileen, a St. Louis native, is one of the top Irish harp players in the world. She has won numerous accolades including the highly coveted Senior Harp title at Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann (World Irish Music Championships). She has a bachelor’s degree in Music Performance from St. Louis University and a master’s degree in Ethnomusicology from University of Limerick. Eileen has toured and performed all over the world and is a regular tutor at international festivals like the Catskills Irish Arts Week, and Scoil Eigse. Eileen also represented Ireland at World Expos in 2010 in Shanghai, China and in 2015, in Milan, Italy. This summer, Eileen will launch her debut solo CD, The Glory Days Are Over.
Eileen studied classical harp with Laura Hearne and spent most of her summers growing up studying with various harp masters in Ireland. Many of Eileen’s students have now won honors in All-Ireland competitions. She also holds the TTCT teaching certificate awarded byComhaltas Ceoltoiri Eirreann. Eileen was a member of the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra and has performed with the Clayton and University City Symphony Orchestras. Eileen has also appeared with the Musical Diversions Society Orchestra and the St. Louis Women’s Chorale.While studying in Ireland, Eileen taught at the Limerick Municipal School of Music and performed regularly at Dromoland and Bunratty Castles.
I’ve known Eileen Gannon since she was a little girl and have happy memories of staying in the very Irish household of her parents Helen and PJ when Comhaltas tours of the USA visited St Louis, MI, from Ireland in the early 1980s (the wonderful St Louis Irish Arts was Helen’s brainchild).
Eileen has spent her whole life immersed in Irish music and culture and it shows – the richness of her hinterland is unmistakeable. She has a deep respect for and understanding of the tradition: the tunes on this, her first CD, are carefully chosen, lovingly burnished and beautifully played, with a good balance between dance music, harp tunes and slow airs. Her own strong creative impulses are particularly expressed in some beautiful phrasing in the slow pieces, lovely key changes in the dance music and a tasteful approach to variation throughout. A thoughtful delight. - Máire Ní Chathasaigh
Eileen is available to teach private lessons, workshops, or to offer an elegant touch to any event.