Five minutes with…Tom Elliott

tomName, role and department:
Tom Elliott, General Manager, Northern Chamber Orchestra. Based in the Brooks Building, Birley Campus.

How long have you been at Manchester Met:
Not very long, actually. I started in September.

Favourite thing about the University:
Apart from the excellent lunches in the canteen, I really enjoy working in the office with the academics from the Faculty of Education. I just hope we are not too noisy for them!

A typical working day:
After the brisk walk from Piccadilly, once I arrive in Hulme, I generally have quite a few meetings with partner organisations, promoters or musicians. The rest of the time I spend on the phone, writing funding bids, grant applications and planning programmes.

What is your ideal weekend:
Well, with four children I should probably say doing something with them, but seeing as that’s what I generally do get lumbered with, allow me to indulge my fantasies: I’d love to disappear with a fishing rod and a box of flies and stalk some big trout on the River Wye in Derbyshire. As I am now well and truly in dreamland, I’d like to finish off the day with a pint, meal and an overnight stay at the Peacock in Rowsley, joined at this stage, of course, by my wife, Katherine.

Interesting fact about you:
Although my background is in music- trained at the RAM as a violinist and then became a member of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields- I had a few years away from the profession and ran a solar panel company, so I spent quite a bit of time crawling around on roofs!

What are you reading, watching or listening to at the moment:
Reading: Roger Scruton, The Uses of Pessimism.
Watching: Paint dry- literally. We have decorators in my house at the moment.
Listening to: Handel, mainly. But also the Bartok string quartets played by the Emerson Quartet.

Favourite place in the region:
The top of Bleaklow, which I can see from my house in Glossop.

Person you would most like to meet- past or present:
Oscar Wilde. He would be endlessly fascinating but also brilliantly funny. If he were alive today, apart from being a writer, he would be the greatest chat show host of all time.

What items would you take on a desert island and why:
I would have to have my fiddle (I’d actually have time to practise) and a cricket net with a bowling machine with automatic loading of the balls. And of course a fishing rod, although I wouldn’t be catching many trout. Mind you, as a fisherman for whom enthusiasm is not matched by skilfulness, I not tend to catch many anyway.

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