Gerard Victory

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Gerard Victory
Birth nameThomas Gerard Joseph Victory
Born(1921-12-24)24 December 1921
OriginDublin, Ireland
Died14 March 1995(1995-03-14) (aged 73)
Dublin, Ireland

Thomas Joseph Gerard Victory (24 December 1921 – 14 March 1995) was a prolific Irish composer. He wrote over two hundred works across many genres and styles, including tonal, serial, aleatoric and electroacoustic music.[1][2]


Victory was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1921 the son of a shopkeeper Thomas Victory and his wife, Delia (née Irwin).[3] After schooling, he read Celtic Studies at University College, Dublin and Music at Trinity College Dublin, earning a doctorate in 1972.[1]

In April 1948 Victory married Geraldine Herity, they had five children: Alma, Fiona, Isolde, Raymond, and Alan.[3] Victory died in Dublin on 14 March 1995, aged 73. His papers are held in Trinity College and the Contemporary Music Centre hold a number of his scores.[3]


In terms of composition, Victory was mostly self-taught, although he received some formal training from John F. Larchet, Alan Rawsthorne and Walter Beckett.[3] He also attended the "International Summer Courses for New Music" in Darmstadt, Germany.

In 1948 he was joint composer of music for a song in a play by Irish playwrightTeresa Deevy called Light Falling,[4] this was performed by the Abbey Experimental Theatre Company in the Peacock Theatre, Dublin. His work was also part of the music event in the art competition at the 1948 Summer Olympics.[5]

Victory's career was primarily in music administration, serving as Director of Music for Ireland's national broadcasting station RTÉ from 1967 to 1982.[6] He was a president of UNESCO's International Rostrum of Composers, a Fellow of the Royal Irish Academy of Music and a recipient of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and German Bundesverdienstkreuz.[3]


The Gerard Victory Commission is a prize has been named in his honour awarded to the most promising individual composer.[7]

Selected works[edit]


1991    Eblana 45'
1988 Symphony No. 4 21'
1984 Symphony No. 3 40'
1982 Five Inventions 14'
1981 Six Epiphanies of the Author     30'
1980 Three Irish Pictures 12'
1973 From Renoir's Workshop 18'
1970 Cyrano de Bergerac Overture 7'
1966 Favola di Notte 13'


1990    Moresca violin, cello, harp 9'
1985 Commedia 2 trumpets, horn, trombone, tuba     13'
1982 String Trio     violin, viola, cello 22'

Solo piano[edit]

1979    Verona Preludes 22'
1966 Cinque Correlazioni 10'
1965 Three Masks 9'
1962 Prelude and Toccata     8'


1994 The Wooing of Éadaoin children's opera 20'
1991 Responsibilities SATB choir 13'
1991 Seasons of Eros baritone, piano 25'
1989 The Rendezvous soloists, orchestra 60'
1984 Songs from Lyonnesse SATB choir 23'
1978 Seven Songs of Experience soloists, SATB choir 23'
1975-1981    Ultima Rerum soloists, two choirs, orchestra     82'
1975 Cinq Chansons de Rimbaud     soprano, piano 18'
1970 The Magic Trumpet speaker, ensemble 15'
1968 Civitas Nova soloists, SATB choir, organ 12'
1967 Kriegslieder tenor, SATB choir, trumpet, percussion     14'
1962 Le Petit Cerf soprano, SATB choir 6'


1972 Eloise and Abelard opera
1970 Chatterton opera
1964 The Music hath Mischief opera
1956 Iomrall Aithne opera
1953 An fear a phós balbhán opera
1949 Once upon a Moon opera
1944 Nita opera


1985    Marche Bizarre     3'

Mixed media[edit]

1973-1975    Processus     mixed choir, brass, percussion, pianos, tape     14'


  • Three Irish Pictures, performed by RTÉ Sinfonietta, Proinseas Ó Duinn (cond.), on Marco Polo 8.223804 (CD, 1996).
  • Ultima Rerum, performed by Virginia Kerr (S), Bernadette Greevy (Mez), Adrian Thompson (T), Alan Opie (Bar), RTÉ Philharmonic Choir, National Chamber Choir, Cór na nÓg, National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Colman Pearce (cond.), on: Marco Polo 8.223532-3 (CD, 1997).
  • An Old Woman of the Roads, performed by Bernadette Greevy (Mez) and Hugh Tinney (pf), on: Marco Polo 8.225098 (CD, 1998).
  • Revel in Reel Time, performed by RTÉ Concert Orchestra, on: Celtic Collections CCD 135 (CD, 1999).
  • Songs from Lyonnesse, performed by National Chamber Choir of Ireland, Colin Mawby (cond.), on: Black Box BBM 1030 (CD, 2000).
  • Moresca, performed by Geraldine O'Doherty (hp), David O'Doherty (vn), Moya O'Grady (vc), on: Absolute Music [no label code] (CD, 2009).
  • Prelude and Toccata, performed by Hugh Tinney, on: RTÉ lyric fm CD 153 (CD, 2016).

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b Klein, Axel (2001). Irish Classical Recordings: A Discography of Irish Art Music. Westport, US: Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 182. ISBN 9780313317422.
  2. ^ Strimple, Nick (2005). Choral Music in the Twentieth Century. North Devon: Amadeus Press. p. 95. ISBN 9781574673784.
  3. ^ a b c d e Ryan, Joseph J. "Victory (Thomas Joseph) Gerard". Dictionary of Irish Biography. Cambridge University Press. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. ^ "The Teresa Deevy Archive".
  5. ^ "Gerard Victory". Olympedia. Retrieved 21 August 2020.
  6. ^ Contemporary Music Centre. "Gerard Victory (1921-1995)". Contemporary Music Centre, Ireland. Retrieved 17 February 2015.
  7. ^ Unknown (2005). "Brigid's students work with national choir". Kilkenny People. Archived from the original on 18 February 2015. Retrieved 17 February 2015.