Hallé Choir Academy Profiles

Hallé Choir Academy Director
Simon Mercer ARCO, BMus (Hons)

Simon conducts the Royal Northern College of Music Symphony Chorus which recently performed Mahler’s 2nd Symphony to mark the opening of the refurbished RNCM Concert Hall. They will sing in the British Premier of Penderecki’s monumental 7th Symphony, a work for 3 choirs, 6 soloists and vast orchestra, conducted by the composer, at the Bridgewater Hall in June 2015.

For over 20 years he has been a staff member of the Junior Department at the Royal Northern College of Music and holds the posts of Organ Tutor, Academic Tutor and Director of the JRNCM Vocal Ensemble. Since 2002 he has been an Examiner for the Associated Board of the Royal School of Music examining in the UK and overseas.
His varied freelance career has recently expanded with his appointment to the Royal College of Organists. Prior to taking up a freelance career in music Simon concluded his 25 years in education as Director of Music at the King’s School in Macclesfield.

Hallé Choir Academy Vocal coach and accompanist
James Hendry LRSM, B Mus (Hons)

James is the Assistant Director of the Hallé Youth Choir and is a musical coordinator and conductor at the International Gilbert and Sullivan Festival.

He is currently studying for a Master’s degree at The Royal Northern College of Music as a Repetiteur in the Vocal and Opera Studies department. He has a first class honours degree from the college for his piano performance degree He has performed as a pianist and as a singer in The Royal Albert Hall, The Wigmore Hall, The Bridgewater Hall and The Sage Gateshead.