Cork Chamber Choir was founded in 2005 by a small group of Cork-based choral singers who were looking for a new challenge. From informal beginnings, it grew to 20 singers with members now from Ireland (north and south), England, Germany,  Poland, Finland and USA  with alumni from France, Georgia, Spain, Scotland, USA. The choir enjoys a combination of concerts and competition participation while continuing to refine and develop its sound under the direction of  musical director, Tom Crowley.

The choir includes a number of musicians, music teachers, music professionals, while other members are from diverse professions. All share a dedicated enthusiasm for music and choral singing.

In addition to formal and informal performance, the choir has participated in competitions with successes including Cork International Choral Festival (first place in National Premier Chamber Choir competition in 2011, and first place in the National Open Church Music competition in 2010).

The choir has performed all over Cork City and county and abroad in October 2014 in St Mark’s Church, Zagreb, Croatia and at the Choral Festival in Derry in 2015.

In 2017 the choir performed at Cork Opera House as part of the spectacular Christmas Concert with Cara O’Sullivan and others, at St Anne’s church Shandon for Culture night and at St Peter’s church North Main Street performing Howells Requiem and Missa Brevis in G major by a young Mozart.

The choir have performed several times at the Honan Chapel UCC including a memorable Faure’s Requiem. Other venues have included The Crawford Art Gallery; Cork School of Music,The Courthouse, Washington Street; The Triskel Christchurch; Blackrock Castle Observatory; St. Peter’s Church, Bandon; St. Multose,Kinsale, St. Luke’s Church; Fota House; Civic Trust House; The Spiegeltent; St. Fachtna’s Church, Rosscarbery and Church of St. John the Baptist Midleton as part of the East Cork Early Music Festival.

The choir has performed in the Shandon Sunrise dawn chorus, a fringe event of the Cork Choral Festival welcoming summer at 6:05am on May 1st 2016 and in 2015.

The Choir performed in the Crawford Art Gallery in March 2015 as part of the Forte Festival a concert of modern Irish music including A Chraobh Chrom by Séamus de Barra, Sliabh Geal gCua by Gerard Victory and the world premier performance of Solfa Carlile‘s Two Joyce Songs.

Under our previous conductor Helen McGrath in May 2014 the choir premiered the work “Teampall Fuaime” by Ian Wilson, a collaboration with the choir who contributed lyrics and melodic ideas, at Triskel Christchurch during the Cork International Choral Festival. Also during the 2014 festival, the choir hosted a Croatian choir, Cantores Sancti Marci as part of a cultural exchange. During their stay, the choirs enjoyed joint workshops exploring Irish and Croatian folk songs. In October 2014 the choir travelled to Zagreb and enjoyed further performances and workshops with Cantores Santi Marci.

Other past performances include presenting a concert of contemporary Irish choral music in April 2013 at St Anne’s Church, Shandon and performing under Christian Garcia in Cork Midsummer Festival 2012 in a project titled Court: In the Name of the People which received a four-star review in the Irish Times. In 2012 the choir released a CD, the complete collection of Alfred Burt Christmas Carols directed by Dee Coyle, with 50% of profits being donated to Barnardos Ireland.

The choir have an informal annual carol singing event for local charities. Monies raised in December 2016 and December 2017 amounted to over €1000 each year for the benefit of Pieta House, previous charities benefitting include Marymount Hospice and Cork Society for Autism.

Current Cork Chamber Choir Members:
Soprano: Leona Duffy, Kate Fielder, Susan O’Driscoll, Fiona Chambers, Clare O’Shea, Erin Harris
Alto: Nollaig Ni Chinneide, Jean Healy, Siobhan Nolan, Elaine Collins, Aino Wihervaara
Tenor: Patrick Fitzpatrick, Jerome Maume, Ger Goodwin, Coral O’Sullivan, Michael Mergner, Eoin
O’Callaghan (Ballincollig)
Bass: Rian O’Dwyer, Richard Winfield, Pawel Switaj, Terry O’Hanlon

Musical Director: Tom Crowley

Tom Crowley is a native of Cork. He graduated with an honours BMus degree from the Cork School of Music. He then continued his studies in Romania completing an M.A. in orchestral conducting in the National University of Music Bucharest where he studied under Maestro Dumitru Goia; a disciple of the St. Petersburg school of conducting.

It is in Romania that Tom had his professional conducting debut, with the Botosani Philharmonic. Since then Tom has conducted the “Sergei Lunchevici” Philharmonic in Chisinau, Pitesti Philharmonic, and Brasov Philharmonic, the Royal Camerata Orchestra of Romania, Concorda String Orchestra, Cork New Music Ensemble, Cork Youth Chamber Orchestra, the Army Band of the 1st Brigade, Quercus Ensemble, Brandylane Orchestra, Cork School of Music Chamber Orchestra, and has worked closely with and prepared orchestral programmes for renowned the conductors Neil Thompson and Dumitru Goia. He has founded a chamber orchestra in Cork; Stormport Sinfonia, with whom he has most recently recorded the soundtrack for the film documentary – A Doctor’s Sword. Tom has enjoyed working with Declan O’Rourke and Julie Feeney as M.D for their orchestral concerts and wrote string parts for Jack O’Rourke’s debut album. He is musical director of the Cork Chamber Choir, is also artistic director of the Cork Orchestral Society, and has been the principal conductor of the Cork Concert Orchestra since its inception in 2015.

Tom was awarded 1st place in the Jeunesses Musicales International Conducting Competition in 2011. In 2015 and 2017 he was selected as a finalist, placing 2nd in the ESB Electric Ireland Feis Ceoil conducting competition, in which he conducted the RTÉ Concert Orchestra. Working with various ensembles, Tom has premiered orchestral works by many composers, including C.S.L Parker, Sam Perkin, Paul Patterson, Peter Power and Sam Barker.

Tom enjoys an eclectic career as a violinist. He has worked prolifically as an orchestral violinist. He has led many orchestras including the Cork Pops Orchestra, the Cork Opera House Orchestra, the Cork School of Music Symphony Orchestra and Focsani Philharmonic. He has also played with many other orchestras including the Endellion Festival Orchestra, the Bucharest Film Orchestra, and the Wexford Opera Festival Orchestra. Tom has also worked in a Lebanese folk band, a progressive -rock band, and as an actor-musician on a series of projects with the Cork Operatic Society including Orpheus and Der Vampyr. Tom performed the Barber violin concert with the Cork School of Music Symphony Orchestra in 2008. He has worked extensively as a session musician, is featured on dozens of albums, and plays regularly with the Tritone Jazz Trio.

Tom taught Junior Cert. music in Gaelcholáiste Carraig Uí Leighin in 2016/17, was senior string advisor to the Symphonic Waves project in the west of Ireland in the same year, and currently runs a music programme in St. Patrick’s Girls’ National School. Tom began teaching violin at Music4Children in Crosshaven in September 2017.