Saturday 22 March 1975


Born: September 22nd, 1938, Dublin (Ireland)
Nationality: Irish

In due course, the short impression below will be replaced with a more extensive career overview


Colman Pearce was educated at University College Dublin; he studied conducting in Hilversum and Vienna. He was principal conductor of the RTÉ Symphony Orchestra from 1981 to 1983 and principal guest conductor of the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra from 1984 to 1987. Until 1999, he was principal conductor and music director of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra and, in his final year, was the recipient of the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in the State of Mississippi. He was also made a Freeman of the City of New Orleans. 

As a conductor, Colman Pearce’s repertoire embraces not only the main works in the symphonic field but also opera and oratorio. He has directed the first performances of many contemporary Irish works and, with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, has recorded CDs with works of classical composers. As a composer, his song cycle ‘Summerfest’ was commissioned by RTÉ and premiered in 1993 with the composer as pianist.


Colman Pearce made his debut in the Eurovision Song Contest as the musical director of the 1971 edition, held in Dublin’s Gaiety Theatre; that year’s Irish entry, however, was conducted by Noel Kelehan. In the early 1970s, Pearce took over from Kelehan as the regular Irish Eurovision conductor, accompanying Sandie Jones with ‘Ceol an ghrá’ in 1972, Maxi with ‘Do I Dream?’ in 1973, Tina Reynolds with ‘Cross Your Heart’ in 1974, and The Swarbriggs with ‘That’s What Friends Are For’ in 1975.


Musical director - no entries conducted

Country – Ireland
Song title – “Ceol an ghrá”
Rendition – Sandie Jones
Lyrics – Liam MacUistin
Composition – Joe Burkett
Studio arrangement – Bobby Murphy
Live orchestration – Bobby Murphy
Conductor – Colman Pearce
Score – 15th place (72 votes)

Country – Ireland
Song title – “Do I Dream?”
Rendition – Maxi (Irene McCoubrey)
Lyrics – Jack Brierley / George F. Crosbie
Composition – Jack Brierley / George F. Crosbie
Studio arrangement – Arthur Greenslade
Live orchestration – Arthur Greenslade
Conductor – Colman Pearce
Score – 10th place (80 votes)

Country – Ireland
Song title – “Cross Your Heart”
Rendition – Tina Reynolds
Lyrics – Paul Lyttle
Composition – Paul Lyttle
Studio arrangement – Bill Somerville
Live orchestration – Bill Somerville
Conductor – Colman Pearce
Score – 7th place (11 votes)

Country – Ireland
Song title – “That's What Friends Are For”
Rendition – The Swarbriggs
Lyrics – Jimmy Swarbrigg / Tommy Swarbrigg
Composition – Jimmy Swarbrigg / Tommy Swarbrigg
Studio arrangement – John Drummond
Live orchestration – John Drummond
Conductor – Colman Pearce
Score – 9th place (68 votes)

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