Monday, 14 January 2008

Nóirín Ní Riain la Irish Independent:

After a year there, a young man in Beatle boots and a cravat greeted her from the top of the stairs. This was Michael O'Sullivan, who went on to become a talented pianist and composer. (She was still Noreen Ryan at that stage.) They fell together and swanned around UCC -- the golden couple.

"Michael was a genius at the piano and he was very entertaining. He was into poetry and was always using metaphors."

They were privileged to have the composer Sean O'Riada as their lecturer. He fired them with a passion for music and the Irish language. (They immersed themselves in the language and changed their names to the Irish versions.) Noirin still remembers O'Riada in a tweed suit and red tie, smoking a cigar. "One day he spent an entire hour telling a joke. He was a fine-lookin' man."

Noirin married Michael when she was 22. She looks back with fondness on their days together, as they shared a passion for each other, for music, for Irish and for their beloved boys. But life goes on.

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