“Thomas Blunt conducted a small
accomplished orchestra with verve” Rupert Christiansen, The Daily Telegraph
“Good things here started with the orchestra, playing to a really high standard under Thomas Blunt’s cultured direction, beautifully paced and elegant” Robert Thicknesse, Opera Now
Thomas Blunt was born in 1977 and studied cello and conducting at the Junior Royal Academy of Music before taking up an organ scholarship at Trinity College, Cambridge. After graduation he furthered his studies in orchestral conducting under Neil Thomson at the Royal College of Music in London, where he also prepared orchestras for visiting conductors including Bernard Haitink, Andrew Litton, Gianandrea Noseda, Roger Norrington and Vasily Petrenko.
This season’s highlights include debuts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Welsh National Opera (Jephtha) and Opéra National du Rhin (Cenerentola), a performance of Saint-Saëns Organ Symphony in Durham Cathedral, a performance of Mahler Symphony no. 1 with Oxford University Orchestra, a re-invitation to conduct in Sao Paulo with the Coro da Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo and assisting Haitink in Chicago with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on performances of Missa Solemnis.
In 2006 Thomas Blunt was appointed Chorus Master at Glyndebourne and made his conducting debut the following year with L’elisir d’amore for Glyndebourne on Tour. Throughout his tenure as Glyndebourne Chorus Master he conducted (as part of the Jerwood Chorus Development Scheme) members of the Glyndebourne Chorus in opera scenes with a chamber orchestra formed from musicians of the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
During this same period Blunt assisted conductors including Music Director Vladimir Jurowski, Maurizio Benini, Douglas Boyd, Richard Egarr, Edward Gardner and Enrique Mazzola. He also collaborated with Jiří Bělohlávek, Mark Elder, Ivàn Fischer and Kazushi Ono.
After completing his work as Chorus Master, he conducted Falstaff and La Cenerentolafor GOT, was appointed Assistant Conductor to Vladimir Jurowski and the LPO, and was invited to take part in the prestigious Allianz International Conductors’ Academy, where he worked with both the LPO and Philharmonia Orchestra.
Highlights of activities away from Glyndebourne have included a concert with the English Chamber Orchestra, the World Premiere of Ghosts - a Royal Opera House commissioned ballet by Dave Maric at the Linbury Studio Theatre, taking part in masterclasses with Bernard Haitink, and an invitation from Vladimir Jurowski to conduct the banda in Das klagende Lied for the London Philharmonic Orchestra’s first public performance to open their first concert season at the newly refurbished Royal Festival Hall.
Other past engagements include performances of The Rape of Lucretia and Così fan tutte at the Benjamin Britten International Opera School, having also assisted Michael Rosewell; work on The Knot Garden at the Cantiere Internazionale d’Arte di Montepulciano, and a performance of Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette for British Youth Opera. Symphonic work includes performances with the South Bank Sinfonia, Cambridge University Chamber Orchestra and he also worked with Ivàn Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra, in Budapest, on Mahler Symphony No. 6. He has worked as an assistant conductor for Opera North on Rusalka and Così fan tutte, and conducted The Rape of Lucretia at the Arcola Theatre, London.
Other recent engagements include two schools’ concerts with the LPO in the RFH, Birtwistle’s Theseus Game for LPO/Foyle Future Firsts at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, two UK premieres by Luke Bedford and David Bruce with the LPO/Foyle Future Firsts in the RFH, Cimarosa’s Italian Girl in London for Bampton Classical Opera with performances at the Buxton Festival and St. John’s Smith Square, London, The Turn of the Screw at the Arcola Theatre, London, conducting for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebrations, work as assistant conductor at La Monnaie on Enescu’s Oedipe, performances of Bruckner’s Mass No. 2 in E minor in Sao Paolo with the LPO and the Coro da Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo, and work as Associate Music Director for a new production of West Side Story for the Northern Sinfonia and the RSC directed and choreographed by Will Tuckett.