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Tamsin Waley-Cohen

Violin

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Tamsin Waley-Cohen debuts with a world premiere in Prague

Tamsin Waley-Cohen debuts with a world premiere in Prague

Rising-star violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen will be giving her debut with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, performing the world-premiere of Richard Blackford’s new violin concerto Niobe at Prague’s Rudolfinum concert hall on 11 November under the baton of young British conductor Ben Gernon For further information and tickets, please click here A day later, on 12 November ...

Tamsin Waley-Cohen debuts with Christchurch Symphony Orchestra

Tamsin Waley-Cohen debuts with Christchurch Symphony Orchestra

Rising-Star violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen will be giving her debut with Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in New Zealand on 16 September at 730pm Together, they will perform Barber’s wonderful and lyrical Violin Concerto, Op 14 under the baton of CSO’s chief conductor Benjamin Northey at the Charles Luney Auditorium  For further information and tickets, please click here...

Biography

Described by the Guardian as a performer of “fearless intensity”, young British violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen has been one of the ECHO Rising Stars of the 2016/17 season. The ECHO tour has seen her perform in many of Europe’s foremost concert halls, including Musikverein in Vienna, Cité de la Musique in Paris, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Barbican in London and Philharmonie in Cologne.

Orchestral debuts last season have included the Hallé Orchestra as well as the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra under Vasily Petrenko, performing Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto. She has also returned to the Royal Philharmonic and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestras. Internationally, recent performances include the Budapest Philharmonic, Graz Kammerphilharmonie and Chapelle Musicale de Tournai. She was Associate Artist with the Orchestra of the Swan throughout the 2015/16 season.

In 2017/18, she makes her debut with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, performing and recording the world premiere of a new violin concerto by British composer Richard Blackford. Other orchestral engagements this season include her debut with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in New Zealand, and she will also return to the Orchestra of the Swan, performing Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4.

Tamsin’s constant ambition to explore new artistic goals has led her to build up a wide ranging chamber music network and most recently, she has founded a new string quartet, the Albion Quartet, with whom she embarks on a residency at London’s Kings Place and the quartet also makes its debut at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw this season. Other regular chamber partners include James Baillieu, Hugo Ticciati and Annelien van Wauwe. Her interest in contemporary music has led to strong relationships with composers including Oliver Knussen – who has written a new work for violin and piano for her ECHO tour – and Huw Watkins, who is also her regular chamber partner, and will write a new work for her to be premiered at Wigmore Hall in 2020. Together with her sister, the composer Freya Waley-Cohen, and the architects Finbarr O’Dempsey and Andrew Skulina, she has devised a project for the Aldeburgh Festival called Permutations, exploring the relationship between sound and space. Tamsin is also Artistic Director for the Sunday Series at London’s Tricycle Theatre, as well as the Honeymead Festival on Exmoor.

In 2017/18 she returns to the Wigmore Hall, Saffron Hall, Stratford Music Festival, Music in the Round, and presents a programme of violin duos with Hugo Ticciati at Hull City of Culture 2018. Recent projects have included a four concert residency at Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge, as well as her appearance at the West Cork Chamber Music Festival.

Tamsin Waley-Cohen is a recording artist for Signum Records. Her most recent release is a recording of American violin concertos by John Adams and Roy Harris, for which she has collaborated with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Andrew Litton. She has released a number of discs with Huw Watkins and their next recording of works by Janacek, Dvorak and Suk is released in November 2017.

Born in London, she became a Foundation Scholar, studying with Itzhak Rashkovsky at the Royal College of Music where she won all available awards, including – twice – the concerto competition, and was their String Player of the Year in 2005. Numerous competition successes include winning the 2005 Royal Overseas League String Prize and the 2007 J&A Beare Bach competition.

Tamsin plays the 1721 ex-Fenyves Stradivarius violin.

Reviews

One of this year’s [Rising Stars] artists is the terrific British violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen … In a programme that included a febrile and rhapsodic account of Poulenc’s Violin Sonata, Waley-Cohen gave the London premiere of Oliver Knussen’s Reflection ... this beautifully crafted eight-minute work is made of tiny aural brushstrokes suggesting water: ripples mirroring each other and bursting out in expression and ecstatic high lines.
- The Observer
 (Fiona Maddocks)
, 2017
Oliver Knussen’s eight-minute Reflection (2016), for violin and piano, had its London premiere from Tamsin Waley-Cohen and James Baillieu, superb players both. With its stylistic assurance and fresh-sounding impressionism ... it seemed a piece long present in the canon.
- The Sunday Times
 (Paul Driver)
, 2017
During the orchestral introduction, the soloist visibly entered into the soundworld, and this was echoed in the later orchestra-only sections, when her body language showed she was living the music with them. In every sense of the word, there was harmony between all players, a great feeling of supporting each other. The whole concerto was a triumph, but special mention goes to her pin-drop cadenza in the first movement, with eloquent silences and an exciting sense of anticipation. Affectionate applause was followed by Waley-Cohen's exquisite encore in the shape of J.S. Bach's Sarabande.
- Bachtrack
 (David Mellor)
Tamsin Waley-Cohen held us rapt with daring and undaunted performances.
- The Times
 (Hilary Finch)
Waley-Cohen had shown what a fine player she was, projecting George Benjamin’s Three Miniatures, Richard Causton’s new Fantasia and Air and Fernyhough’s daunting Intermedio alla Ciaconna with fearless intensity.
- The Guardian
 (Andrew Clements)
Young Artist to Watch - Great playing from the very talented Tamsin Waley-Cohen. This really highlights the talent of the next generation of virtuosi.
- Classic FM
 (David Mellor)
... her sense of line and capacity to make things happen are both beautiful and strikingly individual ... The Lark Ascending's opening solo searches out an extreme degree of musical space in a way that's at once daring and mesmerising.
- BBC Music Magazine
Tamsin Waley-Cohen launches into Szymanowski’s Sonata with gusto, her bow rasping on the string in the composer’s passionate flights, her sound meltingly beautiful and fragile in his graceful melodies. She has a potent rhetorical style, moving neatly from dramatic flourishes and cadenzas into gentle lyricism.
- The Strad
Her playing reminded me of that of the great Arthur Grumiaux; a higher compliment is impossible.
- The Examiner, Ireland
 (Declan Townsend)
Miss Waley-Cohen charmed us throughout the evening with a Beethoven that was passionate and elegant, full of a liberty and grace we haven’t heard for a long, long time.
- Una Voce Poco Fa, Italy
 (Massimo Crispi)
Waley-Cohen's playing is radiant and soaring.
- The Sunday Times on Tamsin's Hahn/Szymanowski disc
... superlative performances of Vaughan Williams. The Lark Ascending ... Highly recommended.
- Northern Echo
Waley-Cohen brings such intimacy to her performances that at times one could believe her 1721 Stradivarius was a breathing organism.
- New Zealand Herald on Tamsin's Hahn/Szymanowski disc
The most exceptionally gifted young violinist I have ever encountered.
- Ruggiero Ricci, violinist

Discography

Bohemia
Released November 2017 on Signum Records

Featuring works by Antonin Dvořák, Josef Suk and Leoš Janáček.

Permutations
Released June 2017 on Signum Records

Permutations is a new work by Freya Waley-Cohen, commissioned as part of a Aldeburgh Festival’s 2017 season and exploring the relationship between architecture and music.

Roy Harris & John Adams Violin Concertos
Released September 2016 on Signum Records

Violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen continues her series of concerto recordings on Signum with two contrasting works by American composers.

BBC Symphony Orchestra
Andrew Litton (Conductor)

Hahn & Szymanowski: Works for Violin and Piano
Released September 2015 on Signum Records

“… a wonderfully subtle, introspective and touching performance.” The Guardian

Recommended Recording, The Strad

Soli: Solo Works for Violin
Released April 2015 on Signum Classics

“Bartok’s sonata is as fine as any on record, cogent and genuinely moving; Penderecki’s substantial Cadenza proves a gripping-ten minute masterpiece; and miniatures by George Benjamin, Elliot Karter and (especially) Gyorgy Kurtag are valuable rarities. ” – Classical Music Magazine

Vaughan Williams & Elgar
Released September 2014 on Signum Records

“The quiet intensity and tonal beauty of Waley-Cohen’s playing, especially in the hushed conclusion made you savour every note.” – Birmingham Post

1917: Works for Violin and Piano
Released April 2014 on Signum Classics

“Great playing from the very talented Tamsin Waley-Cohen. This really highlights the talent of the next generation of virtuosi.” – David Mellor, Classic FM

Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto in D minor
Released September 2013 on Signum Classics

“Tamsin Waley-Cohen and Huw Watkins resist the works’ temptations to indulge in speed for its own sake, and their new performances are all the better for their avoidance of excessive flashiness.” – Michael Dervan, The Irish Times

An American In Paris
Released June 2013 on Champs Hill Records

“stunning technique” – EDGE Atlanta