Dominic Grier

MA (Cantab), PG Dip (RAM), Dip RAM

Academic Studies - Lecturer in Music

International conductor, working with many of the most respected ballet companies in the UK and Europe.

Regular coach and pianist at the Royal Opera House

Music Director of the Worthing Philharmonic Orchestra

Dominic's career embraces opera, ballet, symphonic work, contemporary music and orchestral training. Conducting for dance is a particular specialism, and he is widely recognised in this field as among the most accomplished of his generation. He was Staff Conductor for The Royal Ballet from 2008–10, and a member of the Jette Parker Young Artists programme at the Royal Opera House. He has since served as guest conductor to many of the most prestigious ballet companies in the UK and Europe, as well as returning frequently to conduct at the Royal Opera House and touring with The Royal Ballet including recent visits to Brazil and Japan. He enjoys a particularly strong association with Birmingham Royal Ballet, where he has performed a wide repertoire every season since 2011. He served as Associate Guest Conductor to Northern Ballet in 2011–12.

He started his career as Assistant Conductor at the Opéra National de Lyon, working on productions including Siegfried, Porgy and Bess, and Death in Venice. He conducted the French première of Copland's opera The Tender Land in 2010, to great critical acclaim. He has also served as Assistant Conductor to the Aldeburgh Festival, preparing the Britten-Pears Orchestra for performances of Peter Grimes, and Assistant Conductor to British Youth Opera for performances of Albert Herring. He most recently conducted Malcolm Arnold's rarely-heard opera, The Open Window, with the Berkeley Ensemble. He works frequently as a pianist for coaching at the Royal Opera House, working with many of the young singers on the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme.

He has worked with orchestras and ensembles including the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Orchestre de l'Opera de Lyon, Symfonish Orkest van Opera Vlaanderen, the Tokyo City Philharmonic, the Orquestra do Theatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro, the Orchestre de Limoges et du Limousin, Orchestre Symphonique et Lyrique de Nancy, Orchestra of Welsh National Opera, BBC Concert Orchestra, The Berkeley Ensemble, Salomon Orchestra, Chandos Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Ballet Sinfonia and the SNG Symphony Orchestra Maribor. He has also worked in masterclasses and competitions with the Bamberger Symphoniker, the Orchestre National de Montpellier, the BBC Philharmonic, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestra of Opera North and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

He was Music Director of the King's College London Symphony Orchestra (2009–12), the Ashover Festival Orchestra (2007-9) and the London International Orchestra of Academia (2006–8) and is currently Music Director of the Worthing Philharmonic Orchestra.

His performances have been broadcast on BBC Radio 3, France Musique, and throughout the UK as part of the Royal Opera House’s live screenings, as well as being released on DVD for the Opus Arte label. He recently recorded Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade with the Orchestra of Flanders Opera.

Dominic has collaborated with, and performed the music of, a wide range of contemporary composers including Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Paul Patterson, Jonathan Dove, Matthew Hindson, Darren Bloom, Daniel Thomas Davis and James Olsen.

He is also an accomplished countertenor, and is a member of the choir of Beckenham Parish Church, widely recognised as among the finest church choirs in the UK.

Dominic read music at the University of Cambridge, at the same time studying conducting with George Hurst. He continued his studies on the postgraduate conducting course at the Royal Academy of Music with Colin Metters. Other teachers have included Sir Colin Davis and Martyn Brabbins.

Recent Engagements:

Onegin, The Royal Ballet; Giselle, Dutch National Ballet; The Taming of the Shrew, Birmingham Royal Ballet; Scheherazade, Flanders Ballet; The Nutcracker, The Royal Ballet; Swan Lake, Birmingham Royal Ballet; Cinderella, Birmingham Royal Ballet; Purcell School Symphony Orchestra; Bromley Youth Music Trust Alumni Orchestra; Chandos Orchestra; Royal Ballet Sinfonia at Symphony Hall Birmingham.

Teaching Philosophy

A practical understanding of conducting can be helpful for orchestral musicians and singers alike, and increases musical development generally. My aim is to provide a solid grounding in basic conducting technique, score study skills, and the projection of musical structure in performance, as well as a detailed introduction to key works in the orchestral repertoire. I was lucky to have studied with some of the most respected teachers of conducting and I hope to pass on the knowledge I gained to my own students. The technique taught is based on the 'Toscanini-Barzin method', which has been the basis of the Royal Academy of Music's conducting tuition for many years. A focal point of my teaching is the orchestral music of Brahms, for which I hold a deep affinity and fascination. In my view, the Brahms symphonies provide a good source of much of what there is to learn about conducting well. I aim to work closely with Sian Edwards and Dr. Raymond Holden to provide an integrated approach to the provision of conducting tuition across the Academy as a whole.

Research interests

Performance studies; The 'Finale Problem' in the Nineteenth-century symphony; The history of conducting; The music of Johannes Brahms; The recordings of Glenn Gould; Early recordings and musical style.

Dominic has contributed to the Sir John Barbirolli Lecture Series, delivering papers on The British Sibelius performing tradition and on Otto Klemperer. He also interviewed Jonathan Del Mar about his editions of the Beethoven Symphonies. He is currently developing an online archive devoted to the career and teaching of the late George Hurst, former Visiting Professor of Conducting at the Academy and a major influence on generations of British conductors from the 1960s until his death in 2012.

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