It was not surprising that Strephon's rustic accents sometimes had an Irish tinge to them, for Thomas Lawlor was born and brought up in the City of Dublin.

While he was an undergraduate at University College studying for his B.A. in Philosophy and English, he found time to attend Dublin College of Music as a part-time singing student, and in 1960 he won the Sam Heilbut Major Scholarship which brought him to London for a course of professional training at the Guildhall School of Music. It was at the end of this course that he auditioned for and was accepted by the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in 1965.

He had the unique distinction of being the only member of the Company to have sung at the Carnegie Hall, New York, for he appeared there as a guest artist in a gala concert of Irish music during the Opera Company's 1964/65 tour of the U.S.A.

His good looks and fine baritone voice have endeared him to the ladies especially, although he is deservedly popular with audiences of all ages and sexes.

He shared the principal baritone parts with Alan Styler, but when Mr. Styler left the Company on 1st June 1968, Thomas Lawlor played all these major roles until he left the company in 1971 to join the Glyndebourne Opera Company. It was during the same year that he married Pauline Wales.

On tour with Glyndebourne he sang Zaretsky in "Eugene Onegin" and understudied Selim in "Il Turco in Italia". During the summer season at Glyndebourne itself he played the Lackey in "Ariadne auf Naxos" and understudied Don Alfonso in "Cosi fan Tutte".

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