Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in music?
I would say a culmination of people and experiences lead me to pursuing a career in music. However, one of my first memories and first loves of music that I can remember is singing to the radio in the car with my mum whilst we waited for the school bus. I was completely in my element being immersed in music whilst singing my heart out and also singing the odd harmony here and there. This made me realise how much I loved music and led me to aiming for the role of Joseph in ‘Joseph and the Technicolour Dreamcoat’ for my first ever theatre performance, of which I was lucky enough to get. This only confirmed my love for performance and music and resulted in me doing what I do today.
Who or what have been the most important influences on your musical life and career?
One of my very first influences on my music came from Paloma Faith. This often confuses people as Paloma is not the kind of artist you would associate with the main inspiration behind a classical artist. However, I was lucky enough to see her live as a thirteen-year-old boy and I was completely in awe of her stage set, presence and all-round charisma.
I was that taken back by her, over the next few days I bought myself a small sound system and started to perform in public for the first time. From here my number of performances grew, my audiences got bigger and it led to me being able to tour the UK and Ireland doing what I love. So it is safe to say that Paloma has been one of the most important influences on my musical life and career.
What have been the greatest challenges of your career so far?
Some of the greatest challenges have come with moving into new areas and performing to new audiences. At some point every musician will have to move into places they have never been before and this is really daunting because people are not aware of who you are and it is like starting all again from scratch and building a connection with your audience all over again. It is quite easy to think that no one is going to be there to support you because you have never been to a particular part of the world before. However, people are always so supportive and make us feel so welcome – which is why music is so incredible!
Which performance/recordings are you most proud of?
The recording that I have to be most proud of so far is my first single ‘Bring Him Home’. This is not particularly down to the performance of the track but more to do with the reaction it received and the things it has done for not just myself but those that have listened to it. I have been blown away by the messages and comments I have received from people saying how much this recording meant to them and also how it has helped them in certain terms. That is truly something I never thought I would be able to achieve. With the music video at over 180,000 views now, I am overwhelmed by the amount of people it has impacted.
Which particular works do you think you perform best?
If I had to choose I think we play the numbers from Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera best. This is mostly down the reaction of our audience and how well received the songs from these fantastic musicals are.
How do you make your repertoire choices from season to season?
I always like to see how audiences react and tailor repertoire choices depending on this. There is also a clear trend that is present with every season and I like to use these trends to pick repertoire. For example, ‘The Greatest Showman’ has been such a spectacle this season and it was only right that we perform a piece from this. Not only is this what is on trend but it is what we have had so many requests to do!
Do you have a favourite concert venue to perform in and why?
My favourite concert venue to perform in has to be the National Concert Hall of Ireland. It is such a stunning venue, home to some incredible performances by world class performers.
Who are your favourite musicians?
It is so hard to choose from such incredible musicians out there but I am hugely inspired by the voice of Andrea Bocelli. His pure and natural vocals are truly awe inspiring and he has to be up there as one of my favourites. I am also a big fan of musicians such as Alfie Boe, Mick Hucknall and the incredible musicians from Simply Red and also Nile Rodgers and his band Chic. All very different genres as you can see but all so important to me for such different reasons.
What is your most memorable concert experience?
One of my most memorable concert experiences had to be when I saw Wildwood Kin perform at the Exeter Cathedral. It was one of those performances where you teleport to a different world for a few hours whilst you are taken on a journey of music heaven. The incredible musicians, twinned with the incredible venue made for a magical show.
As a musician, what is your definition of success?
My definition of success for a musician is providing your audiences with memories they will never forget. If you can create memories that truly impact people and make a difference, you are a pretty successful musician in my eyes.
What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?
Love what you do! If you love what you do and enjoy what you do, so will your audience. They will feel your passion for what you are performing and this will create an instant connection between yourself and them. Even if you are not performing, loving what you do is what I feel is the most important concept to grasp as a musician.
Thomas Cameron performs with Katie Marshall in a special one-off intimate concert at Sherbrooke Mosspark Parish Church, Glasgow to launch The Rising Stars of Classical Music Series 2019/20, presented by Newlands Global Events. Further information/tickets
Thomas Cameron is a charismatic young English tenor, whose powerful voice has been described as having velvet-like qualities and is making waves in the world of classical music.