Born of Irish & Sri Lankan parentage and raised in south London, Gerry Cornelius trained to be a musician at Durham University, Royal Academy of Music London and finished in the class of Ilya Musin at the St Petersburg Conservatory.
Throughout his career he has been unashamedly active in all the main musical and theatrical genres. This has brought about longstanding associations with a very broad spectrum of ensembles, arts companies and education institutions in the U.K. and abroad. His titled posts have included Principal Guest Conductor at English National Ballet, Music Director of Thursford Christmas Spectacular and, most recently, Music Director of English Touring Opera (since 2021). He is also a regular performer and collaborator with London Sinfonietta and Chroma.
In the UK Gerry has appeared as a guest with ETO, ENO, ROH Linbury, WNO, the Hallé, and LPO whilst abroad with the Bolshoi in Moscow, Luxemburg Philharmonic, Opera Orchestra of the Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona, Festival d’Automne Paris, MusikFabrik Cologne, Hong Kong Ballet & Sinfonietta.
His close association with composers and creators of theatre art forms has recently involved him in world premiere productions of lyric theatre by Judith Weir, Tansy Davies, George Benjamin, Catherine Kontz, and Olga Neuwirth whilst also conducting Pina Bausch’s Sacre du printemps and Akram Khan’s Giselle & Creature for the dance stage.
Gerry was for eight years the head of music and associate conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. Elsewhere in education he has been a visiting musician at Goldsmiths and Cambridge universities and Trinity Laban, RAM and RCM conservatories in London.