Cathal Garvey hails from Ireland where he made his name as a choral and orchestral conductor.
Since moving to London in 2009, he has conducted Southern Sinfonia, London International Orchestra, Bromley Youth Music Trust Staff Orchestra, I Maestri, London Medical Orchestra, London Repertoire Orchestra, King’s College London Symphony Orchestra, Morley College Choir and is founder and director of the Ulysses Symphony Orchestra. He is also Musical Director of Newbury Choral Society, Billingshurst Choral Society and for two seasons was Chorus Master and Assistant Conductor at Grange Park Opera. He is currently on the conducting staff of the Royal Academy of Music.
Cathal began his career as an Opera Chorus Master working for most of Ireland’s major opera companies including Opera Ireland, Opera Theatre Company, Anna Livia Opera Festival, Opera South and Lyric Opera. For these companies he has worked on over fifty productions, including La Bohème, Il trovatore, Boris Godunov, Aïda, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Hérodiade, La rondine, Madama Butterfly, The Flying Dutchman, The Silver Tassie, Cavalleria rusticana, Tosca, Don Carlo, La traviata, Carmen, Macbeth, Faust, Martha, The Queen of Spades, Andrea Chénier, Jenufa, Rigoletto, Orfeo ed Euridice, La Cenerentola, Fidelio, Don Pasquale, The Pearl Fishers and Lucia di Lammermoor. He acted as Assistant Conductor for many of these productions and has also conducted several musicals in Cork and Dublin.
During his ten years in Dublin, Cathal conducted the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, the Orchestra of St Cecilia, the Ulysses Orchestra, the Irish Sinfonia, the Dublin Baroque Players, the Royal Irish Academy of Music Wind Ensemble, Dublin Concert Band, the RTÉ Philharmonic Choir, Bray Choral Society and from 2001 to 2006 was Principal Conductor of the Dublin Orchestral Players. From 2004 to 2009 he was Musical Director of the Dun Laoghaire Choral Society with whom he had a highly successful tenure, covering a wide range of sacred music and oratorios.
Cathal began violin and piano studies in his native Cork at an early age, continuing at the Cork School of Music and later reading music at University College Cork. After completing his Masters degree in conducting he studied for two years at the prestigious College of Moscow Conservatory. As a violinist, Cathal was a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland and has played professionally with numerous orchestras including the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland and the Germany-based Philharmonia of the Nations. He currently works as a freelance player in London. As a chorister, Cathal has sung and toured with many large choirs and chamber choirs, among them the Irish Youth Choir, University College Cork Choir, Madrigal ’75 and the College of Moscow Conservatory Choir.