Brightly Burning Flame: Ensemble 1. Photo credit: Justin Grounds.

In June 2022, after two years of working through the pandemic, members of the Irish Doctors Orchestra met together on Heir Island off the coast of West Cork for a week of music making. They invited local composer Justin Grounds to join them with some of his music, and the result is a new film produced by Grounds of a live performance of his string orchestra piece ‘Brightly Burning Flame.’

‘Brightly Burning Flame’ was written some years ago following losing a friend to motor neurone disease. I wanted to create a piece for string orchestra which portrayed the arc of a life lived, with all of the pulsing rhythms of a body growing and ageing, but also the hopes, dreams, loves – the way a life sings its unique song to the world. It seemed really fitting to bring this piece to the Irish Doctors Orchestra during this extraordinary week of meeting and playing on this beautiful island. – Justin Grounds

Grounds’ orchestral work draws influence from the modern minimalists such as Philip Glass and Arvo Pärt, but also often includes elements from his training as a baroque violinist as well as an electroacoustic composer. Receiving a bursary from the Arts Council to help to produce a series of films of his recent work, he brought over local filmmaker Sean Phair to oversee the shoot, which took place at the Heir Island Retreat.

An additional short ‘behind the scenes’ film can be viewed here:

Justin Grounds 
Justin Grounds is a violinist, composer and music producer based in West Cork. Justin has been a member of the Arts for Health Partnership Programme artist team since 2015, working as a resident composer in local community hospitals. Justin has produced five solo records and performs with Barefoot Baroque, the Vespertine Quintet and as a soloist.

Irish Doctors Orchestra 
Formed in 2020, the Irish Doctors Orchestra is an all-Ireland collaboration of doctors, medical students and healthcare professionals who are all classically trained musicians. Check out upcoming performances at


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