David Watkin

“He not only brings that dedicated scholarly view of playing characteristic of period instrument specialists, but he plays with such huge commitment. He is a great inspiration to me, especially in Mozart.” Sir Charles Mackerras, BBC Music Magazine

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David Watkin read Music at Cambridge whilst studying the cello with William Pleeth and singing with Kenneth Bowen. He was a Shell/LSO Finalist, received the Bulgin Medal and was Principal Cello in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

He has made a wide range of recordings: of Vivaldi (Hyperion), Beethoven (Chandos) and Francis Pott (Guild), Haydn’s Sinfonia Concertante with OAE (Virgin), Schubert Quintet with the Tokyo Quartet (hmusa) and, for release in 2015, the Bach Suites. He has been a soloist at London’s Wigmore Hall, Barbican, Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall and New York’s Carnegie Hall and has performed the Schumann concerto with Sir John Eliot Gardiner and ORR at New York’s Lincoln Centre. As a guest artist he has collaborated with, among others, Robert Levin and Fredericka von Stade.

David has played solo Bach at Bach’s birthplace in Eisenach, at Frederick the Great’s Palace, in the Prague Spring Festival and featuring in Sir John Eliot Gardiner’s TV programme “A Passionate Life”. He is a juror for the Leipzig Bach Competition.

As a member of the Eroica Quartet he has performed all over Europe and the USA and their recordings of Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Schumann, Debussy and Ravel have received great acclaim.

As Principal Cello in some of the world’s leading ensembles – English Baroque Soloists, Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Philharmonia Orchestra and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra – he has played a key role at the heart of some ground-breaking performances. Conducting is now a major part of his music making.