Selina (Ina) Boyle Collection

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Last Updated: 2020-12-14

Selina, also known as Ina, Boyle (1889-1967) was an Irish composer whose musical education was taken, in part, under the renowned composer Ralph Vaughan Williams. She also studied under Charles Wood, Percy Buck, and Charles Kitson. Boyle won a Carnegie Trust award in 1919 for her orchestral work ‘The Magic Harp’, a piece inspired by Irish mythology and which introduced her to the public for the first time. Variously writing choral works, song-cycles, string quartets, and larger works for orchestra, Boyle also composed three ballets. Her great regret was that much of her music was neither published nor played during her lifetime.

Interest in Boyle’s music has grown since a feature-length documentary about her life and music titled ‘From the Darkness’ was broadcast by RTE Lyric FM on 12 June 2010. The documentary was informed by the work of Dr. Ita Beausang, who co-authored with Séamas de Barra the biographical work ‘Ina Boyle: 1889–1967: A Composer’s Life’ (Cork University Press, 2018).

A large collection of Ina Boyle’s music manuscripts was donated to the Library of Trinity College in 1967 by her cousin and heir, Doreen Boyle: IE TCD MSS 4047-4173. These items form the Selina (Ina) Boyle Musical Manuscripts collection.

Ina Boyle’s diary extracts, IE TCD MS 10959, were presented to the Library in 1997 by Professor Nicola LeFanu of University of York’s Music Department; acquired from the estate of the late Elizabeth Maconchy.

Yet more Ina Boyle manuscripts are held at IE TCD MS 10960.

Click here to access the Library's blog piece ‘The Show Must Go On’ – Ina Boyle Song Recording in London, by Roy Stanley, which includes a link to a video report of the recording of some of Boyle's compositions at the Wigmore Hall, featuring interviews with the artists, score editors and others involved in the production.

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