Carol of the Bells Around the World
Join today! Submission Deadline 21 November 2022
We invite cellists of all levels to join us in playing the Carol of the Bells to show your commitment to peace and your support for Ukraine.
Ukrainian cellist Vlad Primakov has arranged Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych’s 1914 piece, “Carol of the Bells,” based on the Ukrainian folk chant “Shchedryk” for three cellos and six cellos. There is also an unaccompanied version. The parts are free to download but are not intended for resale.
Like our Ukrainian National Anthem Cello Project, it is free to participate in this project, but we encourage you to make a donation to the charity of your choice in support of Ukraine. (Vlad has recommended a charity.)
Register for the project here.
19 November 7:30 PM EST
Cellist Seth Parker Woods, hailed by The Guardian for his “mature artistry and willingness to go to the brink” and choreographer-dancer Roderick George, whose work L.A. Dance Chronicle wrote “[is] remarkably capable of generating change and provoking thought” take us on a transformative journey with the world premiere of Difficult Grace.
A deeply personal exploration that draws inspiration from the Great Migration, immigration, the historic newspaper The Chicago Defender, and the poetry of Kemi Alabi and Dudley Randall, this multimedia tour-de-force shifts our perspective on history, the times we live in, and what it means to be human.
Concert available for viewing online for 72 hours from time of broadcast
Click here for tickets and more information.
Online Programs and Events
17 November 7 PM PST
Adriana Barton ~ Wired for Music
In this captivating blend of science and memoir, a health journalist and former cellist explores music as a source of health, resilience, connection, and joy.
Music isn’t just background noise or a series of torturous exercises we remember from piano lessons. In the right doses, it can double as a mild antidepressant, painkiller, sleeping pill, memory aid—and enhance athletic performance while supporting healthy aging. Though music has been used as a healing strategy since ancient times, neuroscientists have only recently discovered how melody and rhythm stimulate core memory, motor, and emotion centers in the brain. But here’s the catch: We can tune into music every day and still miss out on some of its potent effects.
Adriana Barton learned the hard way. Starting at age five, she studied the cello for nearly two decades, a pursuit that left her with physical injuries and emotional scars. In Wired for Music, she sets out to discover what music is really for, combing through medical studies, discoveries by pioneering neuroscientists, and research from biology and anthropology. Traveling from state-of-the-art science labs to a remote village in Zimbabwe, her investigation gets to the heart of music’s profound effects on the human body and brain. Blending science and story, Wired for Music shows how our species’ age-old connection to melody and rhythm is wired inside us.
Click here to register and for more information.
3 December 2022 | 6:00 PM–8:15 PM GMT
All About My Bow – Cellist Catherine Black
Our bow is our voice. We want it to breathe, speak, dance, sing and emote. This is an infinite subject but we do need to start somewhere! I feel we learn best with clear explanation, demonstration, focus and experimentation.
We will explore in varied ways, how our bow use can become increasingly natural to us – to become truly, an extension of your arm and hand. In going slowly and in detail, you will more truly find your own voice and feel able to express yourself more fully and authentically as a cellist & musician.
This series will build your understanding in stages. Some classes may be repeated too.
The instrument we play is large and physical and we need to know how to use energy well and understand movement because sound follows the movement.
I will send you materials for the class ahead of the day and then afterwards I will send documents that help you consolidate and develop our work. The groups will be small enough that we will be able to work individually too to check things are understood.
Venue: Zoom (waiting room opens at 5.45 PM for tuning)
Fee: £30 per class
Online Timeline Series – Cellist Catherine Black
We all want to be as rounded a musician as possible and that’s a pretty big ask. We all have our preferences, and the groups & orchestras we play in, take us down certain paths which enrich and educate us, but sometimes we find a hole in our knowledge!
The Online Time Line Series has really found a place in your lives. Join us to learn more about a remarkable piece of music, its composer, an era, its style that may otherwise have passed you by. Musical architecture, polyphony, phrasing, the place of music in society are all a part of this quest for a better understanding and roundedness.
We will play, discuss & explore from your – the player’s point of view – a particular piece of music from the wide library of Unsung Heroes Cello Ensemble scores. These now range from Josquin and John Taverner (1490–1545), through to Tchaikovsky & Elgar and far into the twentieth century.
Though there are some restrictions online, we can all play using the mute button, though not as a group. This is an exciting opportunity for players to have the chance to play as many parts as they wish as we play together.
You may want to bring a notebook too and I do send out further notes to help you continue the development after the class. I see this as a massive opportunity for us to do detailed work that really moves you on, because we have these apparent restrictions.
Just a thought: you may think a particular composer, (say Josquin for instance) isn’t for you. Don’t rule things out too easily as all these people, whose music I want to share with you, have so much light to shine for us. As cellists, there is so much music we miss because we have so much already written for us. This is an opportunity that I personally have loved developing.
Your score is sent to you on booking your place and there are 15 places per class so we keep the lesson small, detailed and personal.
Do look at all the parts if you can, so you get under the skin of the music.
Fee: £25 per class
1 January 2023 (Deadline)
Gustav Mahler Prize 2023 – Cello Competition (Online)
The Gustav Mahler Institute Prague, in cooperation with the Gustav Mahler Philharmonic Jihlava, invite cellists of all nationalities up to the age of 30 to compete for the Gustav Mahler Award 2023. The competition will take place online via YouTube recordings. Many prizes have been prepared for a total of EUR 10,000. Each competitor will receive an expert jury evaluation. Please read the rules of the competition on our website. It’s easy.
The Cello Guild Courses
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Trad Cello – Tunes and Techniques with Natalie Haas
Let Natalie Haas teach you some tricks of the trade as well as some great melodies!
Natalie is one of the most sought after cellists playing traditional music today. She and Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser have toured as a duo for twenty years, wowing audiences at festivals and concerts worldwide with their unique sound.
In this series she will teach some bowing techniques when accompanying melody players before moving on to chords and arranging, finishing with some melodies that sit well on the cello.
Although this series is aimed at the cellist, many of the skills and techniques will sit as comfortably on any string instrument.
Click here to learn about membership options.
Win a Year of Free Lessons!
Enter a drawing for a year of free lessons via video exchange with cellist Mike Block. Click here to enter.