Fergus O'Carroll

Past Musical Director

Fergus O'Carroll
Fergus O'Carroll was born in Waterford, Ireland, into a musical family, and settled on the French Horn after trying his luck on the violin and trumpet. He studied with Victor Malirsh in the Royal Irish Academy of Music under a scholarship from the Irish Youth Orchestra while finishing his schooling at St Finian's College, Mullingar, home of the Schola Cantorum. He then joined the RTE Symphony Orchestra as fourth horn until 1977, when he was appointed 1st Horn with the RTE Concert Orchestra. In the meantime, Fergus studied horn with Niko Gruger of the Munich Conservatoire of Music and Dale Clevenger of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He returned to the RTE Symphony Orchestra in 1985 (then re-named the National Symphony Orchestra) and has since been Section Principal Horn as well as performing as soloist with most of the orchestras in the country. Through his association with wind bands, he developed a passion for conducting and has conducted many bands in Dublin most notably the national champions, Dublin Concert Band and St James's Brass and Reed Band. He has conducted the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Irish Sinfonia, the RTE Concert Orchestra, the Orchestra of St Cecilia and the Dublin Baroque Players. Now he is the Musical Director of the Dublin Symphony Orchestra, Dublin Concert Band and the Royal Irish Academy Wind Ensembles, Senior and Junior, where he also teaches French Horn and is Head of the Wind Brass and Percussion Faculty. His introduction to choral conducting came when he was invited to be founding conductor of the Ulysses Choir, Dublin and since then he has been associated with many choirs including Dun Laoire Choral Society and the Dublin Chamber Choir. Fergus was Assistant to the Conductor of the Annalivia Festival of Opera during its existence and is currently Musical Director of Mullingar Choral Society, a group with whom he enjoys a very strong bond. In his "spare time", Fergus publishes Irish music for bands under the name OCMP. His orchestration of Donal Luney's work "Dúiseacht" (Awakening) was performed at the Hanover Exhibition in June 2000 and his composition "Capricious Celts" was recently recorded by the Irish Police Band, the Band of the Garda Síochána, and has received many performances, both in Ireland and in the USA. His "5 Mood Swings for 5", for Brass Quintet, has been warmly received by players and audiences alike and has been performed on numerous occasions both at home and abroad. Fergus holds a Masters Degree in Music from CIT Cork School of Music.