Thomas Cameron is a 19-year-old tenor whose voice has been described as ‘velvet-like’. He was nominated for a Classical Brit Award this year and has just finished recording his debut album at the world-famous Abbey Road Studios.
He’s going places – and luckily, one of them is Shaftesbury. Thomas performs at the Grosvenor Arms later this month, following his huge Shaftesbury Fringe success in the summer.
“I was overwhelmed by the support of the town,” Thomas said. “I had a great audience and such lovely feedback. When I looked back at it and thought about going on an autumn tour and returning to some venues, Shaftesbury was at the top of the list. I wanted to come back and do a full show.”
Thomas’ Shaftesbury Fringe performance was a reduced song set that fitted into a busy weekend programme. Now he’s coming back to sing for longer and as the main attraction. “I thought I would love to go back and sing to the town again with a lot more of my repertoire.”
In the summer, Thomas sang to a packed hotel courtyard. As winter is approaching, his next Shaftesbury gig will be indoors. “I thought it would be a bit risky to go outside at this time of year. We’re actually moving it upstairs into the Assembly Room. It is stunning.”
For his new show, Thomas will take some pop classics and made them feel classical. “I’ve taken contemporary songs and put them into a classical style. I quite like to do that and it normally goes down well. There will be some surprises in there too. I’ve made some songs into my own and I’m looking forward to sharing them with everybody,” said Thomas.
“One of the main ones is a Coldplay song. I’m not telling you which one,” he laughed. “As a song it has a much bigger orchestration but I’m just bringing it down to myself and my pianist, Kate Robey. We will make it into something quite different. We’re quite pleased with the result.”
Thomas felt that his Shaftesbury audience responded well to his big musical numbers in the summer. “They obviously knew those songs which is great because we have an instant connection then. The majority of the audience were singing the words with me and it was something that I don’t always see. It really stuck in my mind. Everybody was engrossed in the performance. It wasn’t just me. It was one big collaborative event. It was very special.”
After performing at Shaftesbury Fringe, which is now England’s third-largest open performance event, Thomas headed north of the border to the world’s best-known fringe. He took his show to Edinburgh.
“It was a bit of a gamble but something that we wanted to do. It’s not the kind of thing you normally see there. Most of the Fringe is comedy and theatre. I think it worked. We had a really appreciative audience again which I was grateful for.”
Thomas accepts that he usually appeals to a crowd much older than his 19-year age. The music that he is passionate about isn’t generally popular amongst his peers. “My age group don’t particularly listen to what I sing. People are shocked when they see me because they think I will perform pop. When I explained that I tour singing musical songs and classical pieces there are some raised eyebrows. But I’m quite lucky with that because there are few people of my age performing and it helps me to stick out slightly.”
Following a successful summer of singing, Thomas has signed a contract with a manager and he’s going to be touring more often. “We’ve got some massive venues next year and I’m starting to move into Ireland, with two shows before the end of this year in Cork and Limerick.”
Thomas is in demand but he says he won’t forget a town that has embraced his powerful vocal performances. Thomas is returning to Shaftesbury Fringe next year, between 5th and 7th July 2019. “My plan is to come back and I’m very much looking forward to it,” he said.
You can learn more about his tour dates and hear his music at ThomasCameronTenor.com.
Thomas performs at the Grosvenor Arms Hotel on 29th November. Ticket prices range between £17 and £27.50 and can be bought on EventBrite.com.