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Irish Conductor, Eimear Noone Makes History As Oscars' First Ever Female Conductor

Noone will be one of two high-profile Irish women at the event.

She will take to the pit with the orchestra this coming February 9. 

Following this year’s disappointing slate of director nominees – namely the decision to box women out of the category altogether – it seems that The Oscars are doing something right by asking Eimear Noone to become the first woman ever to conduct the orchestra at the Academy Awards.

She will take to the pit to lead the 42-piece orchestra at the Academy Awards as it plays excerpts from five nominated scores on Sunday 9 February. 

Taking to social media to share her delight, Noone thanked "visionary producers Stephanie Allain and Lynette Howell Taylor and the incredible Rickey Minor, genius music director," for inviting her to perform at the Dolby Theatre for the Oscars on February 9.

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As well as holding a history-making title at the upcoming Oscars ceremony, Noone was also the first woman to conduct at Dublin's National Concert Hall. For four years she conducted the Dublin City Concert Orchestra, an ensemble she founded at the age of 21 for the performance of film music.

She has also conducted many orchestras around the world, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Dallas Symphony, National Symphony, the Royal Philharmonic of London and the Sydney Symphony in Australia.

Speaking to Variety, she expressed some nerves before the big event. "I'd be dead inside if I didn't have any concerns," she said. "Luckily for me, I have friends in the orchestra and I have friends on the page in front of me. The background changes, but the little black dots on the page are always home for me. No matter what country I'm in or what concert hall, it doesn't matter - the score is where my mind and my heart are."

No matter what country I'm in or what concert hall, it doesn't matter - the score is where my mind and my heart are.

Noone joins Saoirse Ronan in representing Ireland at this year's Oscars. Ronan received her fourth Oscar nomination earlier this month, shortlisted in the Best Actress category for Little Women.

Main image by Isobel Thomas

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