Michael Gallen (b. 1986) is an Irish composer, writer and performer. Having been brought up primarily with Irish traditional and folk music, he later pursued studies in composition in Paris, and is most comfortable meandering at the borders of different musical styles. Recent work includes Wilde Stories, a suite for the RTÉ Concert Orchestra and Cór na nÓg responding to Oscar Wilde’s fairy tales; What You Forget, commissioned for the Ireland 2016 project and Extraterrestrial Events, a dance-opera developed with Company Philip Connaughton which premiered in Paris in March 2017, with further performances at Dublin Dance Festival and Cork Opera House. Michael has been involved in several collaborations with dance and theatre, including TARDIGRADE – a winner at the 2014 Dublin Fringe Festival – and Age of Transition (w. Aoife McAtamney) which premiered at the Abbey Theatre in 2016. He is currently collaborating on a new work with dance artists Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Colin Dunne, which will premiere in Rennes in February ’19 and tour extensively across Europe in the following months. A film/music project entitled A Month in the Lock is currently in development in collaboration with Crash Ensemble, and a new full-scale opera entitled Elsewhere will premiere in France and Ireland in 2020/21.
Michael has been a participant at the MAKE programme in the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Dublin Theatre Festival’s “Next Stage” programme, and residencies at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Cill Rialaig and Cois Tine Soundscapes. He was 2017 Artist in Residence at the Trinity Long Room Hub and recipient of the Dublin City Music Bursary Award in the same year. His work as a documentary maker includes Vocal Chords, a series made with singer Iarla O Lionaird which won Gold Medal at the 2016 New York Radio Awards.
Michael is the lead vocalist and songwriter with Irish band Ana Gog and performs as a solo pianist under the moniker Sudden Wells. He is the Artistic Director of new opera/music-theatre company STRAYMAKER.