Contralto Sarah-Ellen Murphy holds a Bachelor of Education Degree with Music from Mary Immaculate College and an Honours Diploma in singing from the London College of Music and Media. A student of Olive Cowper, she has won all of the major prizes in Feile Luimni, Feis Maitiu in Cork and the Contralto Solo at Feis Ceoil, Dublin.
As contralto soloist she is much in demand in Ireland for oratorio and recital performances with choral societies and orchestras across the country. Her experience covers a wide range of the oratorio and liturgical works by composers as diverse as Duruflé, Verdi, Mozart, Handel, Respighi, Vivaldi and Saint-Saëns. Most recent oratorio performances include the Magnificat by Buxthude, Pergolesi and Schubert with The Galway Tribal Choir, Handel’s Messiah with The Cork School of Music Choir; Bach’s B Minor Mass and Rossini’s Stabat Mater with the Limerick Choral Union and Ancór.
Opera performances include leading roles in The Irish Ring, and The World of Gilbert and Sullivan with Gaudeamus Productions, Tipperary; Mrs. Noye in Benjamin Britten's Noye's Fludde for Limerick City of Culture 2014; Maurya in Riders to the Sea by Vaughan Williams, the title role in The Medium by Gian-Carlo Menotti and Cerebrus in The Breakfast Table by Fiona Linnane with Opera Castalia, Kilkenny. She is a regular collaborator with new music and improvisation innovators, CoMA Limerick; and was nominated for an Opera Bear Award for her recital of Fiona Linane’s Kate O’ Brien Songs.
Most recent and future performances include Dame Carruthers in Yeoman of the Guard with Gaudeamus Productions; Alto Soloist in Handel’s Messiah with Kerry Choral Union; Alto Soloist in Jenkin’s The Armed Man with Limerick Choral Union; The Countess de la Rose in The Countess’ Salon with Opera Workshop and she is currently involved in the devising of a new libretto for Opera Workshop’s 2019 site specific opera production, L’abbandonata.