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People: Laura McGarrigle on her special relationships

We ask personalities about the special relationships in their lives

By Kerry McKittrick

The 25-year-old is originally from Strabane and has composed Pearl, part of the Triptych series at the Mac theatre, in which three young female composers were invited to write short musical theatre pieces inspired by the work of Belfast's Poet Laureate Sinead Morrissey.

My best friends

My closest friend is Brigid McCafferty; we became friends at around 16 or 17 when we had no choice but to perform in the school musical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, at Holy Cross College.

She was the year below me and we bonded over mutual hatred of the musical. We played together in a band, then formed a duo. She now works as a doctor in Letterkenny but still plays the violin.

If she's available, I still ask her to play strings on the projects I work on.

Another close friend is Dan Acheson who plays in the Derry band The Wood Burning Savages. They were on the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury. He's a friend I've had for years.

Dan and I went to Armenia a few years ago to work on a music project.

I brought Brigid and he brought his best friend Paul, who met each other over there and have been going out ever since.

My parents

My mum Elizabeth was a hospice nurse for Marie Curie and my dad James is a sculptor.

We're quite a creative family and my uncle is Maurice Harron, the sculptor who created the Hands Across The Divide sculpture in Derry.

There's always been a lot of art and music around me.

I'm the youngest of six – there's also Geraldine, Joanne, Damien, James and David.

One of my brothers is in London and the rest all had their time travelling but they've now gravitated back home.

We're a close family and I come home quite a lot to see everyone.

I think my parents were quite doubtful about what I decided to do, but once I showed them I was committed to it they were very supportive.

It has been quite tough but they have been great and I don't think they would have wanted me to go down a route that I'm unhappy with.

Who I go to for advice

My mother or my brother, James, are the people I would go to.

James is the middle brother but we're very similar and he has an artistic side to him, too.

And my mum is definitely a wise person and good to turn to as well.

My mentor

My brother David is a musician, too, so he's always very helpful.

He's a composer and arranger in his own right but he's given me great direction and advice.

My secret crush... Adrien Brody

When I was 15 I really liked Orlando Bloom but definitely not now.

I would choose Adrien Brody as he's quite nice.

I'm probably basing this on his Oscar-winning role in The Pianist.

My fantasy dinner party

My first guest would be David Cameron.

It's a weird choice but I'd like to have strong words with him about some of his policy decisions.

I don't think he would listen what I have to say, though, so my next choice would have be comedian Charlie Brooker - he would help pin Cameron down for me.

Next, I'd have David Bowie to lighten the mood and after that I'd bring David Mitchell, author of my favourite book, Cloud Atlas.

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