The Cellini Quartet was formed at the Royal Academy of Music in January 2013. In October 2013 the quartet was granted a place on the Royal Academy of Music's prestigious Davey-Poznanski String Quartet scheme, awarded to the Academy's most promising quartets. The scheme offers increased concert and masterclass opportunities, alongside intense mentoring from Professor David Smith of the Alberni Quartet. They have also received coaching and masterclasses from members of the Badke, Maggini, Vanbrugh, Escher, and Emperor quartets, and were chosen to participate in workshops with the principal players of the Britten Sinfonia, culminating with a performance at Barbican Concert Hall.
The quartet were also awarded a place with a full scholarship to attend the National Young String Quartet Weekend 2014, arranged by Wigmore Hall, where they received tuition from Pavel Fischer, Christoph Richter, Miguel da Silva, Mark Messenger, Nicholas Jones, and the Carducci String Quartet. More recently the Cellinis took part in a course held by the London Haydn Quartet focusing on the quartets of Haydn and Beethoven, they performed Mozart's first Prussian Quartet as part of the Mozart Chamber Series at the Royal Academy of Music, and participated in the York Festival Chamber Competition, where they reached the semi-final.The quartet members are: André Pereira, 1st violin; Ariel Jacob Lang, 2nd violin; Joseph Griffin, viola; Lydia Hillerudh, cello
André Pereira started playing the violin at the age of 7, making his solo debut two years later. He studied with Anibal Lima from the age of 13 until he moved to the Royal Academy of Music in 2012, thus joining Remus Azoitei's class. He was awarded the First Prize in the Fundão International Competition in 2009; one year later he won the Prémio Jovens Músicos' and made solo appearances with Orquestra Gulbenkian and Orquestra do Algarve. He has attended masterclasses with Igor Oistrakh, Gilles Apap, Zakhar Bron, Anna Chumachenko, Pavel Vernikov and Maxim Vengerov. As a chamber musician he has been coached by Paul Wakabayashi, Christoph Richter, Thomas Riebl, Pavel Fischer and members of the Alberni, Ysaÿe and London Haydn Quartets. In 2012 André attended the Leverhulme Summer School playing side by side with the EUYO. Throughout his orchestral experience he has played under the baton of conductors such as Semyon Bychkov, Edward Gardner, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Michael Zilm and Dirk Brossé.
Ariel Jacob Lang is a French-American violinist born in Paris, France. He started his education at the age of 5 at the Conservatoire de Levallois, where he studied with William Fitzpatrick and Melissa Schneps, and continued his studies at the Conservatory of Paris XIII with Florin Sziget for six years. In 2011, he was admitted to the B.Mus Undergraduate Program of the Royal Academy of Music, in the class of Jack Liebeck. Ariel is a committed chamber musician and has participated in masterclasses with Maxim Vengerov, Gyorgy Pauk, Norma Fischer, Albrecht Breuninger, Mateja Marinkovic, Pavel Fischer of the Skampa Quartet, Jan Talich of the Talich Quartet, as well as members of the Escher Quartet and he was selected to participate in orchestral workshops with the Britten Sinfonia and the London Sinfonietta. Ariel has played in many orchestras based in Paris and in London and has performed under the batons of conductors such as Semyon Bychkov, Edward Gardner and Marin Alsop amongst others. He was concertmaster of the Youth Orchestra Maurice Ravel from 2007 to 2011 with whom he played in the Madeleine and the Invalides concert halls, and was invited to perform as guest soloist with them in 2012 and 2013 to play repertoire including Sarasate's Zigeunerweisen and Lalo's Symphonie Espagnole . He has been a violist with the Quarz Quartet, and at present is violist in the Cellini Quartet and in the Omega Piano Trio, with which he has won the Harold Craxton Competition for piano ensembles. Recent engagements include recitals in the Senate House in London and in the Madeira Concert Hall, Portugal.
Joseph Griffin began playing the viola at the age of 8. He was awarded a place at the Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama at the age of 12, studying with Sven Arne Tepl and Fiona Winning and was granted a place at the Purcell School with an MDS scholarship at the age of 16, being placed under the musical guidance of Ian Jewel. Throughout his intensive activity Joseph gained valuable performance experience as a soloist, chamber musician and as an orchestral player, including appearances at: the Petworth and Little Missenden festivals, Warwick University, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the Sage Gateshead and the Wigmore Hall. He has also been a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, playing under the baton of some of the world's foremost conductors at the UK's most prestigious venues. He was recently awarded the Sidney Griller Memorial Prize. Joseph held a scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music, studying with Martin Outram. Through the Academy, he has been involved in collaborations with the London Sinfonetta and the Britten Sinfonia. Joseph receives mentoring from David Smith of the Alberni Quartet and members of the London Haydn Quartet.
Lydia Hillerudh started playing the cello at the age of 7, under the guidance of Elisabeth
Lysell-Bjermkvist. When she was 16 years old she was awarded a place to Lilla Akademien in Stockholm. She has been awarded a scholarship at Royal Academy of Music in London, where she studied under the guidance of Prof. Mats Lidström. Lydia has had the opportunity to participate in masterclasses with some of Sweden's most appreciated cellists, such as Thorleif Thedéen and Ola Karlsson, as well as international figures such as Sun Won Yang and Natalie Clein. As a soloist she has performed at some of Stockholm's major concert venues, such as Berwaldhallen and Musikaliska. She is an eager chamber musician and is the cellist of the Cellini Quartet and of the Tritium Trio, who recently were prize winners in the Harold Craxton Competition, and the Harry Isaacs Trio Prize. Lydia plays a German 19 th -century cello, with a Francoix Lotte bow purchased with generous support from the Salen Charitable Trust.
Born in Bucharest, Romania, Ruxandra Ibric Cioranu attended the opera singing classes at Dinu Lipatti College and then at the National University of Music in Bucharest from which she graduated in 2003. Between 2000 and 2004 she attended various baroque masterclasses at Handel Academy in Karlsruhe with Jeffrey Gall and Richard Wistreich, and at Austria Barock Akademie in Gmunden with Kai Wessel, Hermann Max and Ute von Garczinsky, where she was also recipient of the Tostmann Award. In 2004 she was granted a scholarship at the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles and graduated in 2007.
Ruxandra is also a laureate of the Nadia & Lili Boulanger Foundation. She has performed in many concerts across Europe with various baroque ensembles such as Romabarocca Ensemble (dir. Lorenzo Tozzi), Camerata Vocale de Brive (dir. Jean Michel Hasler), Collegium 1704 (dir. Vaclav Lux), Les Talens Lyriques (dir. Christophe Rousset), Cordis & Organum (dir. J.C. Leclére), II Gardellino (dir. Ketil Haugsand), and the London Schubert Players, as well as under the direction of Ton Koopman, Jerome Correas, Patrick Cohen Akenin and Olivier Schneebeli.
Yoana Karemova has given numerous recitals and performed as a concerto soloist for many years throughout Europe. Born in Bulgaria, she began playing the piano at the age of 5 and gave her debut solo recital at the age of 11. As a versatile and imaginative musician she studied piano performance at the State Academy of Music in Sofia with Anton Dikov, then at Trinity College of Music in London with Penelope Roskell. She has also worked with renowned pianists Idil Biret, Vera Gornostaeva, Peter Katin, Boris Bloch, Lazar Berman and Vladimir Krainev. She continues to captivate audiences with her outstanding technique and spontaneous approach. In 1995 she won the First Prize in the Virtuosi of the Piano International Competition in the Czech Republic, while in 1998 she was awarded the First Prize in the Carlo Soliva International Competition in Italy. In the following years, she also received first and third prizes in international competitions in her home country.
Yoana has been a regular performer for Bulgarian national TV and radios. She has also received the certificate for Outstanding Achievement outside Bulgaria from the Mayor of Sofia. Since 2004, Yoana has been a London-based artist, and has during these years performed in many solo recitals, as well as chamber concerts. Her current and future plans involve performances in Europe, as well as performances at international competitions. She is currently working on a new recording which will be released later this year. Her previous recordings include works by Chopin, Liszt, Scriabin and Beethoven.
Ursula Leveaux is a sought-after chamber musician and has been the bassoonist of London's
Nash Ensemble, the resident Ensemble at the Wigmore Hall, since 1997. She is also in demand as performer on period instruments, and in 2011 was appointed Principal Bassoon to the Academy of Ancient Music. She is a prominent orchestral player having held the position of Principal Bassoon with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra from 1987 to 2007. Ursula is frequently invited to appear as guest principal with major orchestras and ensembles in Britain and throughout Europe. A former pupil at Chetham's School of Music, she furthered her studies with Martin Gatt in London and Brian Pollard in Amsterdam and also studied Baroque bassoon with Danny Bond in The Hague. While still a student in London she was the winner of the LSO Scholarship, and also became a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra working with conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Herbert von Karajan, Leonard Bernstein and Georg Solti.
As well as regular appearances with the SCO, Ursula's solo work has included concertos with the LSO, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and at the Mostly Mozart Festival at the Barbican in London with the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields. In 2011 she performed a Vivaldi Bassoon with the Academy of Ancient Music and Richard Egarr on a tour to the Far East. A regular contributor to BBC's Radio 3, in 2013 she has played in live broadcasts with the Britten Sinfonia, Magdalena Consort, Academy of Ancient Music, the Nash Ensemble and the Halle Orchestra, and took part in the Chamber Prom at the Cadogan Hall with the Academy of Ancient Music.
Ursula's CD recordings include the complete chamber music of Poulenc and of Saint-Saëns, the Beethoven Septet and Schubert's Octet , all with the Nash Ensemble. She can also be heard on the complete recording of Chabrier Songs with Dame Felicity Lott and Graham Johnson. As well as a huge range of orchestral and opera repertoire with the SCO, Ursula has also recorded the Vivaldi Bassoon Concerto in D minor, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies' Strathclyde Concerto No 8 for bassoon, which was written especially for her, and the Mozart Bassoon Concerto , released in 2006. Ursula has played in CD recordings of all the Bach Orchestral Suites and the St. John Passion with the Academy of Ancient Music, a disc of Bach Cantatas with the Magdalena Consort and a recording of a Danzi Wind and Piano Quintet with Ensemble F2.
Ursula has given masterclasses at most of the UK music colleges, and as far afield as Toronto and Hong Kong. She has been a member of the senior faculty at Marlboro Music Festival in the US in 2003, 2005 and 2007, and sat in the jury for the 2013 ARD Competition in Munich. When not travelling and performing Ursula lives in the English Lake District with her husband and 8 year old daughter.
Eleonore Pameijer studied flute with Koos Verheul at the Amsterdam Sweelinck Conservatory where she received her soloist diploma 'cum laude'. She continued her studies in the U.S.A. with Sue Ann Kahn at Bennington College, also following master classes with Julius Baker, Samuel Baron and Harvey Sollberger. After returning to Europe, she studied with Severino Gazzeloni at the Academia Chigiana (Italy). In 1984 she gave her debut recital in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and was prize winner of the Frank Martin competition. From 1985 to 2000 she was principal flutist of the ASKO/Schönberg Ensemble. Eleonore has performed as soloist with many orchestras and ensembles, led by conductors such as David Porcelijn, Arthur Tamayo, Richard Duffalo, Ton Koopman, Reinbert de Leeuw, Oliver Knussen, Ingo Metzmacher, Philippe Entremont and Alexander Vedernikov. She has also contributed her soloistic capacities to many Holland Festival productions, as well as performing in almost every European country, in Israel, Canada, the U.S.A., and in South America.
The world premieres of numerous new compositions—many of which were especially written for her—have been given by Eleonore Pameijer at events such as the Venice Biennale in Italy; the Computer Music Conference at Centre Pompidou in Paris, France; the Huddersfield Festival in England, the Berliner Festspiele and Wittener Tage kir Neue Musik in Germany. With her extraordinary and broad repertoire, Eleonore is a featured artist of FutureClassics. She is Artistic Director of the Leo Smit Foundation, the Uilenburger Concert Series and the Festival of Dutch Chamber Music in Amsterdam.
Einar Steen-Nøkleberg is a leading Norwegian pianist, having made continuous international appearances and over 50 recordings, along with acting as a jury member in prestigious international competitions.
He studied with Nicolai Dirdal and Hans Leygraf. Some of his most important prizes and distinctions are the German Hochschulwettbewerb, the Norwegian Piano Competition in 1972, the Norwegian Critics' Prize for Best Performance in 1975 (for the interpretation in Grieg's Piano Concerto at the Bergen Festival), the Norwegian Recording of the Year in 1976 for a recital of Norwegian Baroque Composers, the Lindeman Prize ("Performer of the Year") 1984, the Grieg Prize in 1985 (Bergen) and 1992 (Oslo). He is a Knight of the St. Olav Order, appointed by the King of Norway for his activities for Norwegian music. From 1975 to 1981 Einar Steen-Nøkleberg was Professor of Piano at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Hanover, Germany, an appointment which made him Germany's youngest professor.
Einar Steen-Nøkleberg's international career has included multiple solo recitals in London, Paris, Berlin, Tokyo, Moscow, Mexico City, New York, Hamburg and Copenhagen. He toured the U.S.A. and the former Soviet Union several times. Concerto appearances include the London Symphony Orchestra, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the Copenhagen Royal Chapel, the China Philharmonic of Beijing, the Yumiori Philharmonic Orchestra and the NHK in Tokyo, and the Oslo and Bergen Philharmonic Orchestras in Norway.
His recording of the Grieg Concerto with the London Symphony Orchestra was chosen by the BBC
CD Review as the best all-time version of this much-recorded concerto. His monumental recording of all Grieg's piano music, a 14 CD set for Naxos Records, received international acclaim, along with his
H. Kjerulf piano works on Simax, and H. Saeverud piano works on Naxos.
Born in Paris, French pianist Blandine Waldmann began her musical studies with Christopher Maynard and Désiré N'Kaoua at the Conservatories of Rueil-Malmaison and Versailles. Her graduate studies led her to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels in the class of Dominique Cornil, where she won First Prizes in piano and chamber music with honors. Then she was admitted at the Koninklijk Conservatorium, Brussels, and awarded a Master with honors in piano, in the class of Aleksandar Madzar and a Master of chamber music with high honor in the classes of Daniel Blumenthal and Viviane Spanoghe.
She continued to perfect her skills by attending various masterclasses in France, Great Britain, Belgium and Italy where she received artistic coaching from such musical personalities as Anne Queffelec,
Jean-Michel Damase, Piet Kuijken, Paul Dombrecht, Luc Loubry, Etienne Siebens, Dirk Vermeulen, Sergei Leschenko, Christopher Elton, Volker Banfield, Vincenzo Balzani and Eugen Indjic.
She is laureate of several International Competitions such as the the Bradshaw & Buono International Piano Competition of New York, the Les Clés d'Or International Piano Competition in France and she has been First Prize winner of the Ranelagh Competition in Paris, the International Eurorchestra Competition in Bari, the Le Note Sinfonie International Competition of Musical Execution in Castel Ritaldi and the Paolo Barrasso International Musical Competition in Caramanico Terme.
She has been invited to play on the French and international stage in recital and as a chamber music performer. She has given concerts across Europe, and has performed in venues such as the Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall in Zagreb, the Lysenko Column Hall in Kiev, the Bechstein Center in Cologne, the Teatro Comunale of Florence, the Château de Lourmarin (France), Wolubilis in Brussels, Musée de Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium), Castle Heule-Kortrijk (Belgium), the Cultural and Scientific Center of Russia in Brussels, the Great Hall of Concerts in the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, the Museum of Musical Instruments in Brussels, Ravenstein Gallery in Brussels, Espace Toots in Brussels, Duke's Hall and Cadogan Hall in London, the Palazzo Ruspoli in Nemi-Rome, and the Salone delle Feste in Polistena (Italy). Blandine had her Carnegie Hall debut in July 2015, during the Prizewinners' Gala of the American Protégé International Competition.
Blandine enjoys collaborating with contemporary composers. In 2005 she recorded and worked with Alin Gherman on the creation of the work Grains, fleur et son envol for violin, clarinet, percussion and bass. She has also worked with a major composer of the Belgian contemporary creative scene, Frederik Van Rossum, in Catharsis for two pianos. She also played under the direction of Bart Bouckaert in a contemporary orchestra, with a special focus on the work of Lucien Goethals. During in-depth training in contemporary music, she received advanced coaching from the composer Michel Lysight.
Blandine's activity as a chamber musician is equally impressive. She has performed with artists such as Sébastien Fournier, Genc Tukiçi, Andrew Hardy and Justus Grimm and formed the Duo Respighi with violinist Michael Scoriels.
Blandine Waldmann's outstanding work as a performer has been recognized by the Service Général des Arts de la scène du Ministère de la Communaute Française de Belgique. She was invited to participate as a jury member at the Conservatory of Brie-Comte-Robert (France), the Academy of Berchem-Sainte-Agathe (Brussels), the Institut de Culture Musicale de Paris and has chaired the jury of the Conservatory FJ. Gossec of Gagny (France). Her solo recordings dedicated to Liszt and Scriabin were captured on video, as well as two recordings of works by Chopin, Beethoven, Felix Blumenfeld, Franck and Rachmaninoff. With a passion for chamber music, she has recorded with violinists Okasana Ryzhenko, Aram Badalian, Michaël Scoriels and oboist Adrien Eble, performing the music of Mozart, Debussy, Ravel, Poulenc, Bloch, Respighi, Dutilleux and Schumann. Blandine Waldmann initiated a project in collaboration with Jonathan Ostlund in 2014, which will see several works premiered and performed throughout a series of concerts in Europe, in the following years.
The Russian cellist Alexander Zagorinsky graduated from the Moscow Conservatory in 1986 and worked as probationer-assistant to Professor Natalia Shakhovskaya until 1988. He has been awarded several international music prizes, including the 'ALL Russian Music Competition' in 1985, the 5 th International Chamber Music Competition in Trapani (Italy) in 1988, and the 9 th International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow in 1990. From 1991 to 2000 Alexander Zagorinsky was the first concertmaster of the cello-group of the Academic Symphony Orchestra of the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra. Since 2000 he has been the cello principal and soloist for the Moscow Chamber Orchestra (conducted by C. Orbelian). He is the soloist of the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra and bears the distinction 'Honored Artist of Russia'.
Alexander maintains an active concert schedule, appearing in the music halls of Moscow and other Russian cities, as well as internationally. He has a rich repertoire and excels equally in performing works by classical, romantic and modern composers. He has performed with many renowned musicians including pianists Igor Zhukov, Yuri Rozum, Einar Steen-Nøkleberg, organist and pianist Alexey Shmitov, and many others. He has also appeared with famous symphony orchestras under conductors Vassily Sinaisky, Yuri Simonov, Konstantin Orbelian, Mark Ermler, Vladimir Ziva and others. He recorded extensively, including for the Recording House Musical Foundation in Moscow. Music reviewers and critics have acclaimed his great temperament, mastership of style, nobility and virtuosity.
Alexander Zagorinsky is known for his close collaboration with modem composers and for premiering works by Edison Denisov, V. Dashkevich, Yu. Kasparov, A. Rozanblat, A. Shchetynsky (Ukraine), Y. Galperin (France) and others. Together with the brilliant jazz pianist and composer Nikolai Kapustin, he premiered Kapustin's two jazzy sonatas and also premiered his Concerto for Cello with Chamber Orchestra (Great Hall of Moscow Conservatoire, 2002). In parallel with his performances, Alexander Zagorinsky teaches music at the Gnessin Academy of Music in Moscow.