Starting out in the business, it was the bright lights that drew Jimmy’s attention. His busy career as a singer/actor saw him perform as a soloist with the RTE Concert Orchestra (R.T.E Proms, Make Mine Music, Music for Fun, The Adare International Music Festival and The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber), and star in such shows as West Side Story, Follies, I, Keano and many new Irish musicals. On TV, he featured on The Late Late Show, Bachelors Walk, Fair City, Glenroe and The Clinic.
During his long-term collaboration with acclaimed jazz pianist Billy Crosbie he has written, directed and performed in the revues ‘The Music of Jimmy Van Heusen’, ‘Soft Lights, Sweet Music… The Songs of Irving Berlin’ and ‘Moon River: A Tribute to Johnny Mercer’.
Jimmy is also an established voiceover artist, and has voiced national television and radio campaigns for the Road Safety Authority, Revenue.ie, Bank Of Ireland, and The Irish Examiner, among many others.
His diverse career put him in an ideal position to develop the ‘song’ part of Song and Dance. With the establishment of Canbelto Women’s Choir in the late 2000s, Jimmy saw the possibilities of using choral singing as a tool for vocal training and musical education. Since then, he has set up the Song and Dance choirs, and also established and conducted several choirs across Dublin. He spends most of his spare time doing further choral and conductor training. Jimmy completed a term as the chairperson of the Association of Irish Choirs (now Sing Ireland).
Jimmy is most proud of the community we’ve created at Song and Dance Stage School – the fun we all have together, the support the kids give each other, the home-from-home that the studio has become. ‘If Leaving Cert students tell us they’ve learned more about music from us than from school – and not just technically, but in terms of passion – then we must be doing okay.’