Neil Thomson was born in London in 1966, studied violin and viola at the Royal Academy of Music (1984-87) and conducting with Norman Del Mar at the Royal College of Music (1987-89).
He has performed with many distinguished soloists including Sir James Galway, Dame Moura Lympany, Sir Thomas Allen, Dame Felicity Lott, Philip Langridge, Sarah Chang, Antonio Meneses, Nelson Freire, Steven Isserlis, Julian Lloyd Webber, David Geringas, Natalie Clein, Ittai Shapira, Viviane Hagner, Gyorgy Pauk, Brett Dean, Jean-Philippe Collard, Stephen Hough, Alexander Gavrylyuk, Peter Jablonski, Jean-Louis Steuerman, Dame Evelyn Glennie and Sir Richard Rodney Bennett.
He has conducted all the major UK orchestras. Recent débuts include concerts with the Tokyo Philharmonic, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra,Sao Paulo Symphony Orchestra, Munich Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan and the Orchestra of Gothenburg Opera.
Recordings include a disc of American contemporary Violin Concerti with Ittai Shapira and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Gloria Coates Fifth Symphony, Stenhammar Symphony No.2 and two discs of orchestral music by Cesar Guerra-Peixe with the Goias Philarmonic Orchestra. He is currently engaged on a project to record all 14 symphonies of Claudio Santoro for Naxos with the Goias Philarmonic.
From 1992 until 2006 he served as Head of Conducting at the Royal College of Music. He was made an Honorary Member of the RCM in 1994 for his services to the institution and has established an enviable reputation as an orchestral trainer.
Since March 2014 he has served as Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Goiás, Brazil.