Tom Primrose

"the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra ... sounds witty and engaging under the fine control of conductor Tom Primrose" - The Stage

"they blossom here under the alert and perceptive baton of Tom Primrose, whose rhythmic verve ensures ideally precise playing" - Hugh Canning

"Tom Primrose leans...into the emotion of Stravinsky's whip-smart score, and his fluent approach is particularly strong in the music's more sombre, intimate moments" - The Times

Tom Primrose is a critically acclaimed British conductor, accompanist and coach, whose performances have won praise for his discipline, grace, and imagination. 

He works principally in opera, and his freelance work takes him all over the world, recently including Opéra National de Paris (Palais Garnier/Bastille), Opéra de Montecarlo, Det Kongelige Teater og Kapel (Copenhagen), Polish National Opera, Korea National Opera, and the Mariinsky Hall (St Petersburg).  

This season, he conducts the Grange Festival's critically-acclaimed The Rake's Progress (Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra).  Other recent and forthcoming highlights include Mendelssohn Elijah, Elgar Dream of Gerontius, (Cambridge Philharmonic), Haydn Nelson Mass (Southbank Sinfonia/Newbury Festival Chorus), and concerts next season with Bournemouth Symphony/Newbury Festival and Cambridge Phil among others.  Next season also includes opera work in Oslo and Vienna.

In the UK he has also freelanced in the music departments of the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, the Grange Festival, Shadwell Opera, Opera Holland Park, and Opera South.  He has assisted or chorusmastered for a host of varied conductors including Alexander Soddy, Susanna Mälkki, David Parry, Richard Egarr, Finnigan Downie Dear, Francesco Cilluffo, Yan-Pascal Tortelier, Martin Brabbins, Stephen Barlow, Jean-Luc Tingaud.  In addition to the core operatic repertoire, Tom is particularly sought-after in the preparation of twentieth century opera, and recent engagements have included include Janáček The Makropolos Case, Britten Peter Grimes, Berg Wozzeck, Bartok Bluebeard's Castle, Knussen Where the Wild Things Are.

Other recent conducting credits include Bizet Carmen, Britten Les Illuminations and The Burning Fiery Furnace, Ravel Mother Goose, Elgar Enigma Variations and Serenade, Verdi Requiem, Mozart Requiem, Sinfonia Concertante and various other concertos, Stravinsky Symphony of Psalms, Handel Messiah, Faure and Durufle Requiems.

He has strong connections with East Anglia where he is Artistic Co-Director of the Southrepps Music Festival,  works regularly at the University of East Anglia, and acted for a time as Assistant Organist and Director of the Girls’ Choir at Norwich Cathedral.  

Tom is an award-winning piano accompanist, and has performed in many of the UK’s principal concert halls and festivals, on BBC television and radio, and has collaborated with leading singers and instrumentalists including Ben Johnson, Christina Gansch, Sophie Bevan, Ellie Laugharne, Jonathan McGovern, Mary Bevan, Susanna Hurrell, Ruby Hughes, Ema Nikolovska, Claire Barnett-Jones, Jose Maria del Monaco, Javier Camerena, Corrine Winters, Jonathan Bloxham, Ben Baker, Eloise Fleur Thom, Jenifer Pike, amongst many others.

Tom studied at the University of Oxford with Robert Saxton, and at the Royal Academy of Music with Michael Dussek and Malcolm Martineau.  He currently lives in Manchester.

"The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra played superbly under Tom Primrose" - Music OMH

"Primrose kept things on a tight rein, yet it never felt constrained and this was one of those Rakes where the voices were able to bloom yet the full imagination of Stravinsky's score, with its eclectic mix of influences, was able to register to the full" - Robert Hugill