Full Biography

Welsh harpist Tomos Xerri has performed in concert halls worldwide as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral performer. He always strives to connect on a deep emotional level with his audiences, moving them through his range of colours and depth of feeling. A recent highlight was representing Britten Sinfonia performing Saariaho’s Fall for solo harp alongside contemporary dance at the Barbican Theatre for four nights, and since graduating he has given solo performances at the Royal Festival Hall, Wigmore Hall, St Martin-in-the-Fields, and the 1901 Arts Club, and has performed as a concerto soloist with orchestras across the UK. He has had the honour of performing solo for members of the Royal Family including Her Majesty the Queen, and in 2018 was invited to represent Arts Council England with a solo performance at Downing Street for the Chancellor and members of the Cabinet. Tomos has been a prizewinner at international competitions including winning First Medal at the UFAM International Harp Competition in Paris and Second Prize at the International Harp Festival in Caernarfon, and is very grateful to have been the recipient of prestigious awards such as the Hattori Foundation Senior Award in 2016-17 (the first harpist ever to have achieved this) and the Philharmonia Orchestra's MMSF Award.

After winning a place on the Philharmonia Orchestra Instrumental Fellowship Programme 2017-18, Tomos is now enjoying a busy freelance orchestral career; he is regularly invited to play, record, and go on tour with the Britten Sinfonia, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, City of London Sinfonia, and Southbank Sinfonia, with recordings for BBC Radio 3, Classic FM, and TV recordings for the BBC Proms, as well as performing as a soloist with choirs such as Tenebrae, St Pauls Cathedral Choir, and the London Philharmonic Choir, with opera and ballet orchestras, and at Christmas time you can find him entrancing audiences as principal harpist of the Thursford Orchestra.

 

A passionate chamber musician, Tomos has performed Ravel's Introduction & Allegro live on prime-time BBC News at the opening night of the Cutty Sark concert space in London, as well as in Cambridge alongside members of Britten Sinfonia, and performed Debussy’s Sonata for flute, viola, and harp alongside members of the Philharmonia Orchestra at the 3 Choirs Festival in Hereford. Since 2015, Tomos has been performing as half of the flute & harp duo Siren with Claire Wickes (English National Opera, principal flute); appearances include recitals at the Gower Festival, London Flute Festival, Buxton Festival, Brighton Festival, 1901 Arts Club and St Johns Smith Square. Siren are committed to exploring beyond the existing flute and harp repertoire; their recital programmes feature new works commissioned for the duo, as well as their own arrangements and reimagined interpretations of more traditional works.

Tomos strives to bring new music to wider audiences and has performed numerous British, European and world premieres, and has been fortunate enough to work personally with composers such as Sofia Gubaidulina, Kaija Saariaho, and Mark-Anthony Turnage. He was featured on national Spanish television performing contemporary works in an immersive and multi art form concert, and has commissioned new works for harp and performs regularly with contemporary music groups such as The Riot Ensemble.

 

He considers outreach work highly important and has been performing in hospices, care homes, hospital wards and schools for many years with organisations such as Live Music Now! and the Concordia Foundation, and has participated in education projects with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, and Britten Sinfonia. He hopes to inspire a younger generation of harpists by giving masterclasses (recently at the Gower Festival) and with his busy private teaching practice, and as harp teacher at Charterhouse School, Lingfield College, and the Hindhead Music Centre. Born in Cardiff, Tomos attended the Junior course of the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and was a chorister at Llandaff Cathedral before being awarded a Major Music Scholarship to Eton College. He subsequently studied with Gabriella Dall'Olio at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music & Dance where he graduated with First Class Honours and completed his Master of Music course with Distinction, winning the John Marson Prize for an outstanding musician.