Dr. Mel Mercier

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Dr. Mel Mercier

Head of School

Email: m.mercier@ucc.ie
Office location: Music Building, first floor, F106

Academic, performer and composer, Mel Mercier is a Senior Lecturer in Music, programme coordinator of the MA in Ethnomusicology and, from October 2009, Head of School. He teaches courses in Irish traditional music, ethnomusicology, Indian classical music, West African traditional and popular musics, Javanese gamelan, and performance theory. As a bodhrán and bones player, Mel has performed, recorded and collaborated extensively with pianist and composer Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin, and with John Cage and the Merce Cunningham Dance Company (Roaratorio, Inlets, Duets). Mel’s extensive composition output includes commissions for Javanese gamelan and various percussion ensembles, and international theatre collaborations with director Deborah Warner and actress Fiona Shaw. His research interests include the revival period in Irish traditional music, American minstrelsy, and two-handed American bones-playing.

Research

Performance
Mel has been performing Irish traditional music for more than 30 years, with composers and musicians such as John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Donal Lunny, Bill Whelan, Mícheál Ó Suilleabháin and many others.

Composition
Mel has composed music for more than twenty international theatre productions. The following is a selection of recent work:

The Hour We Knew Nothing of One Another (Peter Handke)
Directed by James Macdonald. Produced by the National Theatre (London, UK).

Happy Days (Samuel Beckett)
Directed by Deborah Warner. Produced by the National Theatre (London, UK).

Readings (Deborah Warner and Fiona Shaw)
Produced by Theatre National De Chaillot (Paris, France).

Fewer Emergencies (Martin Crimp)
Directed by James Macdonald. Produced by The Royal Court (London, UK).

Julius Caesar (William Shakespeare)
Directed by Deborah Warner. Produced by the Barbican (London, UK).

The Powerbook (Janette Winterson)
Directed by Deborah Warner. Produced by the National Theatre (London, UK).