FICA is proud to announce the international jury for 2017, comprised of experienced, active choral conductors  


Bernie Sherlock received her training in choral conducting during two years of study in Hungary with Peter Erdei and Ildikó Herboly Kocsár. She subsequently studied orchestral conducting with Gerhard Markson during his years as principal conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, leading to a Masters in Musicology and Performance from the National University of Ireland.

Bernie founded the international award-winning chamber choir New Dublin Voices in 2005. Known for its innovative concert programming and its work in television, radio and recording, NDV has been awarded prizes at major competitions in France, Germany, Hungary, Finland, Italy, Belgium, England, Spain and Slovenia.

Bernie has won prizes for best conductor or best interpretation at several European competitions. She has extensive experience directing a wide range of choirs. Since 2007 Bernie has been Musical Director of the Culwick Choral Society, founded in 1898, with whom she has prepared and conducted many of the great works from the repertoire for large choir.

Bernie is a Music Lecturer at the DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama and she also lectured for many years in the School of Music at Trinity College Dublin. She has an international profile as an adjudicator, choral animateur, and teacher of conducting and aural training, and has given workshops in a wide variety of subjects for different organisations. She has been the Artistic Director of the annual AOIC International Conducting Summer School since 2008. In 1993 she founded the Kodály Society of Ireland, whose International Music Course she directed from 1993 – 1998. Bernie is the Irish representative on the World Choir Council.

António Vassalo Lourenço held the position of conductor of the Coro Regina Coeli from 1983 until 2008, and has been the Artistic Director of the Orquestra Filarmonia das Beiras since 1999. He lectures at the University of Aveiro, and is responsible for the curricular units of Choir, Orchestra and Conducting Studies. He aims to promote Portuguese music, which has resulted in various premieres, and first modern performances and recordings of works by Portuguese composers.

In 1996, he concluded his Masters in Choral and Orchestral Conducting at the University of Cincinnati (USA). Holding the position of assistant conductor, he completed his Doctorate in Orchestral Conducting in 2005. Whilst studying at Cincinnati, he participated in orchestration studies with Samuel Adler, Choral Conducting with Elmar Thomas, Earl Rivers and John Leman, and Orchestral Conducting with Gerhard Samuel. He also studied under and was assistant conductor to Christopher Zimmerman.

António has participated in choral conducting courses in Portugal, Spain, France and Belgium, working with
Manuel Cabero, Josep Prats (Barcelona), Erwin List (Strasbourg), Hélène Guy (Lyon), Edgar Saramago, Fernando Eldoro (Lisbon), Paul Brandevick (Boston), Johan Duijck (Gent) and Laszlo Héltay (London). He also participated in orchestral conducting courses in Portugal, Spain and France, tutored by Octave Calleya (Romania), Jeno Rehah (Hungary), Ernst Schelle (Germany) e Jean-Sébastien Béreau (France).

He was the Artistic Director of the Aveiro International Music Festival from 2000 to 2004, and in 2006, he founded the Estúdio de Ópera de Centro, a project that has provided important training activities, in addition to producing operas throughout Portugal. From 2011 to 2015 he was the Director of the Department of Communication and Art at the University of Aveiro. He is currently the Artistic Director of the “Música em Leiria” Festival.

Emanuel Pacheco born in Matosinhos, Portugal, Emanuel Pacheco began his musical education at the local Music Academy.

He later studied with Agripina Nora, before entering the Porto Conservatory of Music, where he earned a Diploma in Piano Performance, studying under Helena Santos.

Upon winning a scholarship to the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Emanuel, he studied piano interpretation and technique with Sequeira Costa and Carlos Cebro, and chamber music with André Gousseau and Günther Arglebe.

Inspired by Fr. Ângelo Ferreira Pinto, Emanuel then dedicated himself to sacred choral music, and participated in various courses, working with O. Faulstich, F. Stoiber, H. Velten, António Mário, Eugénio Amorim, Johannes Göschl.

He was awarded a Masters degree in Musicology from Universidade Católica Portuguesa with a thesis entitled “Os 12 salmos do Vesperal P-Va Cód IV de Estêvão Lopes Morago”. Performing as a soloist, in chamber ensembles, or as conductor of choirs or orchestras, Emanuel has performed throughout Portugal and in Belgium, France and Germany.

He has played with the RDP Orchestra and participated in the Póvoa de Varzim International Music Festival.

He currently focuses mainly on choral conducting and teaching on the National Sacred Music Course, in Fátima, Portugal. He also teaches at the Calouste Gulbenkian Conservatory of Music, Aveiro, and conducts the Pe. Ângelo Ferreira Pinto de Perafita choir.