Nell Ní Chróinín (born 1990) is an Irish sean-nós singer from the Muskerry Gaeltacht in County Cork. Originally from ‘An Choill Mhór’, in the Irish-speaking town of Béal Átha an Ghaorthaidh, although her family is originally from nearby Cúil Aodha, her interest in sean-nós singing arose after attending her first Oireachtas na Gaeilge event when she was ten years old. In her own words, “It was a result of the Oireachtas that I was given a chance to meet with some of the greatest singers, dancers, poets, composers and characters who have now passed on”. In the following year, Ní Chróinín started singing lessons, and was particularly influenced by local singers such as Máire Ní Cheilleachar and Eoiní Maidhcí Ó Suilleabháin, from whom she was able to learn her songs. As a teenager, she succeeded in winning prestigious sean-nós singing prizes, in particular winning in her age category at the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in 2005 and 2006.
In 2008, Ní Chróinín won a medal at the Oireachtas na Gaeilge competition, second place amongst the female singers under 35 years of age (the ‘Corn Phádraig Mhic an Rí’, or ‘Corn na mBan’), and she returned in 2010 to win first place in the same category. Having now won the young women’s category, she qualified to compete for the primary event of the Oireachtas, the ‘Corn Uí Riada’ in the following year. She took part as one of eighteen contestants in 2011, singing ‘Cath Chéim an Fhia’ and ‘An Cailín Aerach’, although Jimmy Ó Ceannabháin ultimately won the coveted top prize.
Over the years, Ní Chróinín has made several television appearances as a guest singer, generally on the Irish language television station TG4. She has sung on traditional music shows such as Geanntraí and Anam an Amhrán, and she was also the subject of an episode of Amhráin is Ansa Liom in 2010, a programme where a chosen traditional Irish singer sings and discusses four of their favourite pieces. In Ní Chróinín’s case, she chose ‘An Lacha Bacach’ (probably the song she is most closely identified with), ‘Cath Chéim an Fhia’, ‘Sean's a Bhriste Leathair’ and ‘Táimse agus Máire’.
Ní Chróinín studied for her Bachelor of Education at Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick, and completed her studies in 2010. At the present time, she is working as a teacher at Gaelscoil Osraí in Kilkenny.