Séamus Crimmins showed promise as a conductor while taking an Honours Music Degree at QUB. Later an Arts Council of Northern Ireland Bursary supported his studies in orchestral conducting with George Hurst at Canford and János Fürst at RIAM.
He resuscitated Newry Choral Union in his home town and later founded Dun Laoghaire Choral Society. Séamus has conducted the ICO, RTE CO, Orchestra of St Cecilia, London Baroque, Northern Chamber Orchestra (UK), Talich Chamber Orchestra (Prague) and many freelance orchestras.
In opera his work with OTC led to national tours of La Vera Costanza (Haydn) and Tamerlano, Flavio and Amadigi (Handel) and invitations to New York (BAM) London (Covent Garden Festival), Lisbon (‘Expo ‘98) and the Melbourne, Brno, Prague Autumn, Buxton and Salisbury Festivals.
Twin passions for music and broadcasting resulted in Séamus holding key roles at RTÉ most notably as founding Head Lyric fm and Director RTÉ Orchestras, Quartet and Choirs. While at Lyric fm he led the new station to many industry successes including National Station of the Year and Best Overall Station of the Year Awards 2002. He originated the Lyric fm Gerald Barry Festival as RTÉ’s contribution to the European Broadcasting Union’s Millennium celebrations; the five-day festival marked the first extensive celebration by RTÉ Radio of an Irish composer. As Director RTÉ Performing Groups he oversaw the appointments of fresh artistic teams for the RTÉ NSO, RTÉ CO, RTÉ Philharmonic Choir and RTÉ Cór na nÓg and he reinvigorated plans for RTÉ’s chamber music provision. He co-initiated New Music Dublin in partnership with NCH, CMC and the Arts Council and encouraged community partnerships and outreach, new concert formats and associate artist programmes together with young artist development initiatives such as orchestral mentoring, a choral conductor-in-training scheme and an orchestral conducting competition. He instigated RTÉ NSO’s performances of Bach Passions on Good Friday at the NCH.
Séamus has served as Policy Director and Music Adviser with the Arts Council. He was co-ordinating Chairman of RTÉ Television’s All Island School Choir Competition and Chairman of the RDS Music Bursary. Adjudication experience includes RTÉ’s Musician of the Future Competition and, each year since its inception, the Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year Competition.
Now a freelance consultant, Séamus balances special interests in music policy and talent development. Recently he was elected to the Council of the Royal Dublin Society.