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Cellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week – 20 November

Here’s your weekly dose of cello news.

Cello News

His Royal Highness, Charles, Prince of Wales Playing the Cello

Prince Charles’ birthday was 14 November. Here is a video of him playing the cello.

Congratulations to Tim Duerinck, Winner of a Henry van de Velde Award!

Tim Duerinck at work wearing a mask and standing in front of a cello and a cello mold

Tim Duerinck Making a Cello

Innovative instrument maker Tim Duerinck is the winner of a Henry van de Velde Award for his flax fiber instruments. You can read more about him and his instruments in our exhibition: Innovations in Cello-Making Materials.

Please consider supporting Duerinck in the Henry van de Velde People’s Award. As he modestly told us, there are many wonderful artists and makers on the list, but of course, we are strong supporters of him – and his cellos. You can see all of the choices and vote here.

Here is a video where he compares his flax, glass, and carbon fiber composite cellos:

17-Year-Old Cellist Leo Kubota Serenades the Sea Lions at OdySea Aquarium in Scottsdale, Arizona

UNC-G Cello Major Adam Jones Wins National Songwriting AwardCellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week - 21 November

University of North Carolina at Greensboro freshman cello major Adam Jones is one of 13 winners of the National Endowment for the Arts’ Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge.

Jones and the others have spent the week since being coached by professional musical theater artists, helping them hone their original songs into Broadway-ready compositions. Each song will then be recorded by Broadway musicians and vocalists for a compilation album. Jones hopes to use his original composition as a launching pad for a full-length theatrical show.

Jones has been working, via Zoom, with Michael R. Jackson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and composer, and Patrick Sulken, an arranger, orchestrator, and Broadway music director.

For his entry in the NEA contest, his song, “A Father’s Fear/Mardi Gras,” came with a back story set in the mid-20th century New Orleans. In Jones’ words: “A tall, well-dressed Black man named Quincy steps off a train. Quincy is from a well-off family in upstate New York that has roots in New Orleans. He has returned to the city with a sense of duty to serve as an educator for poor children there. The song starts with Quincy’s father, Robert, worrying about his son’s safety in the Deep South. As the music changes to a New Orleans jazz sound, Quincy gets caught up in a Mardi Gras parade that despite the festiveness, confronts him with racial realities and reflections.”

Click here to read the full article by Bill Lohmann.

9-Year-Old Cello Prodigy Cameron Renshaw from Byron Center, Michigan, Makes Headlines

Cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason Won the Young Artists Award at the 2020 Royal Philharmonic Society Awards

RPS Awards 2020

Sheku Kanneh-Mason . . . picked up the Young Artists Award for 2020 at the awards ceremony streamed online from London’s Wigmore Hall.

Cellist Seth Parker Woods Outlines Three Key Considerations When Working with Living Composers

Cellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week - 21 November

Seth Parker Woods

In my experience as a performing artist, commissioner of new work, curator, and educator, here are three key considerations:

  1. Openness
  2. Friends
  3. Creative Language Study

Cellist Claire Oppert Plays for Terminally Ill PatientsCellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week - 21 November

In this unit where we try to soften the end of life of patients, who stay there for an average of two weeks, the fifty-year-old musician has been providing “cello sessions” half a day a week, since 2017. She narrated with a delicate pen in The Schubert Dressing (Denoël, 208 pages, 16 euros). Her imposing instrument held in one hand, a suitcase full of scores towed in the other, Claire Oppert pushes the bedroom doors one by one without the slightest idea of ​​what she will be playing there or of the welcome she will receive.

Cello Varnish and Hand Sanitizer – Not a Good Mix

Cellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week - 21 November

The repair job on the instrument’s coating took more than 80 hours

’There was a bottle of sanitiser on a table nearby and one of the other musicians knocked it over without realising it,’ said luthier John Simmers. ’It only took minutes for the damage to be done, as the cellist came back soon afterwards and noticed all the white marks. Hand sanitiser has to be over 60% alcohol to be effective, so it is very damaging to most varnishes on stringed instruments.’


Fabian Boreck, Cellist – Last Places: Cello Solo Improvisation

Artist to Artist with Jim Russell – A podcast on Anchor: Meet Brittni Leigh, Cellist and Advocate for the Arts


Sebastian Plano and Maarten Vos Release New Album: “&”

‘&’ is the stunning new album and collaborative debut project between Grammy-nominated Argentinian cellist, composer and producer Sebastian Plano and award-nominated Dutch cellist, producer and composer Maarten Vos.

Chinese Composer, Ye Guohui and London Symphony Orchestra Join on New Album: “Late Autumn”

Cellos in the News: Top Stories of the Week - 21 November

Ye Guohui’s new album “Late Autumn — Ye Guohui and London Symphony Orchestra”

Under the baton of conductor Zhang Jiemin, the concert was presented by Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, featuring soprano Li Xiuying and cellist Namisa Sun.


The Piano Guys: Banners – Someone to You Piano/Cello Cover

Be sure to read the description under the video, written by cellist Steven Sharp Nelson: “Resilience is inheritable.”

Camille Thomas – Rooftop Cellist

Cellist Camille Thomas plays Ravel’s “Kaddish” on a Stradivarius dating from 1730, from the roof of the Institut de France in Paris, to “nourish the soul” and “carry beauty” to the city’s confined residents during the second national lockdown.

Yo-Yo Ma and Kathryn Stott – Over the Rainbow

Official Video by Yo-Yo Ma and Kathryn Stott, performing “Over the Rainbow” from “Songs of Comfort and Hope”

Miles Milou – Freestyle Pizzicato (Electric Cello)

Apocalyptica “Psalm” – Cover by Jan Tim Schmidt

Columbia University Pop-Ups Concert: Mariel Roberts, Cello

Miller Theatre’s celebrated (and free) Pop-Up Concerts resume, with a change of venue. Filmed live in the Lantern—a stunning venue part of Columbia University’s Manhattanville campus—Miller invites you to take a virtual front-row seat to performances by world-class musicians. This series brings Columbia to you, showing the breadth of Miller’s programming while highlighting the iconic beauty of the campus of Columbia University.

For this solo recital, the gifted cellist Mariel Roberts performs a diverse and thrilling program, including one of her own compositions and excerpts from the beloved sixth Cello Suite by J.S. Bach.

Cellos Shots Livestream from Williams College

Watch Odette Transform AC/DC’s ‘Thunderstruck’ Into A Classical Masterpiece For Triple J Like A Version

Odette has delivered a stunning Like A Version this morning. Stepping outside of her typical musical style, she’s taken on AC/DC’s ‘Thunderstruck’.

Odette has traded in the fuzzy guitars for her piano and a cello, and those thrashing drums for a breezy kettle drum beat.

Like A Version is a segment on Australian radio station triple j. Every week a musician or band comes into the studio to play one of their own songs and cover a song they love.

Beethoven: Tradition and Innovation

Was Beethoven a classical or romantic composer? What was special, different, revolutionary about his music? How does it differ from that of say, Mozart or Bach?

These questions and many others were answered by Professor Erik Levi in the GTA’s autumn 2020 public lecture, celebrating the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth. His lecture on October 21 in the Guildford United Reform Church was enjoyed to a tiny masked and socially distanced audience.

The professor traced the composer’s trajectory from tradition to innovation through his five cello sonatas – which were, conveniently for this purpose, spread over his career.

The various points Prof Levi made were illustrated with live musical extracts he played on piano, accompanied by Jo, his wife, a professional cellist.

Your Turn

Have cello news you’d like included? Please get in touch.