Meet The Sixteen bass Eamonn as he discusses conducting, hobbies, and car breakdowns
What & where was your debut gig with The Sixteen?
Messiah, somewhere in Italy. My second gig was at Oundle school – my car broke down on the way there, I had to be picked up by the concert manager, missed the rehearsal and sight-read the whole programme. Terrifying!
What’s been a memorable Sixteen gig & why?
I always enjoy singing the Choral Pilgrimage programmes in Tewkesbury Abbey – possibly my favourite cathedral on the Pilgrimage. This year singing Sheppard, Tallis and Byrd there felt very special, but my favourite gig to date was probably my debut conducting the group in Kendal in 2007.
What’s your favourite Sixteen recording?
I’ve always loved Crown of Thorns from the Eton Choir Book series and still frequently listen to the Philip & Mary recording which has so many wonderful pieces on, brilliantly performed (recorded before my time!)
Where did you train/study?
New College, Oxford, singing under Dr Edward Higginbottom and then at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where, ten years later, I am now a visiting professor.
What are your hobbies and interests?
Most recently, playing with my son Fionnán.
What else do you do (professionally) when not singing with The Sixteen?
As a conductor I’m doing an increasing amount of guest-conducting, both in England and abroad, as well as working as a vocal coach for singers and choirs. I’m a member of the solo voice ensemble I Fagiolini, and do a fair amount of solo work. When possible I try to inflict my love of English song on anyone who’ll listen.
What football team do you support?
The only team worth supporting…ARSENAL!