Markéta Irglová (Czech pronunciation: [ˈmarkɛːta ˈɪrɡlovaː]) (born 28 February 1988, in Valašské Meziříčí, Czech Republic) is a Czech songwriter, musician, actress, and singer. As of 2010, she resides in New York City.
Irglová began playing music at age 7, and began playing piano at the age of 8 when her friend Faith bought her a piano and sent her to lessons. When she was 9, her father bought her a guitar and she immediately began playing and learning songs by ear. Her mother insisted Markéta learn piano because, as a child, her mother's family could never afford a piano even though she loved it so much.
Irglová collaborates with Glen Hansard of the Irish rock band The Frames, whom she met when he was visiting Valašské Meziříčí, and performs with him as The Swell Season. They released an eponymous album, The Swell Season (album), on Overcoat Recordings in 2006. In 2007, she co-starred with Hansard in the indie movie Once, written and directed by John Carney. Hansard and Irglová wrote all but one of the songs featured in the film. The movie won the World Cinema Audience Award for a dramatic film at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. She and Hansard began dating while making the film Once. In 2009, Hansard said that he and Irglová were no longer romantically linked, and that they are now "good friends." In November 2010, Irglová reported on her Twitter that she was headed to Chicago to record a forthcoming solo album.
 U.S. Academy Award speech
Among the songs Irglová wrote with Hansard for Once was "Falling Slowly," which received an Academy Award for Best Original Song. Irglová became the first Czech woman to win an Oscar, and at age 19 she was the youngest person to win an Oscar in a musical category. Hansard and Irglová performed the song live on the Oscar broadcast at Los Angeles' Kodak Theater on 24 February 2008. When they went on stage to receive their awards, her acceptance speech was preempted by the orchestra's music cue to leave the stage. Host Jon Stewart invited her back to deliver her speech following the commercial break. Ceremony director Gil Cates said the early cue was an accident.
“Hi everyone. I just want to thank you so much. This is such a big deal, not only for us, but for all other independent musicians and artists that spend most of their time struggling, and this, the fact that we’re standing here tonight, the fact that we’re able to hold this, it’s just the proof that no matter how far out your dreams are, it’s possible. And, you know, fair play to those who dare to dream and don’t give up. And this song was written from a perspective of hope, and hope at the end of the day connects us all, no matter how different we are. And so thank you so much who helped us on the way. Thank you.”
Both Irglová and Hansard also appeared on the 2007 I'm Not There soundtrack with their version of Bob Dylan's "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere".