Visiting Professors in 2022

Since we began in 1980 we have welcomed the following great cellists & double bassists...Liam Abramson, Catherine Ardagh-Walter, Alexander Baillie, Lowri Blake, Alexander Boyarsky, Christopher Bunting, Colin Carr, Natalie Clein, Robert Cohen, Sebastian Comberti, Pierre Doumenge, Hans Erik Deckert, Joan Dickson, Emma Ferrand, Leonid Gorokhov, Lionel Handy, Richard Harwood, Tim Hugh, Michael Hurwitz, Guy Johnston, Jakob Kullberg, Mats Lidström, Thomas Martin,  Graham Mitchell, Hassan Moataz El Molla, Corinne Morris, Simon Morris, Chi-chi Nwanoku, Hans Nygaard, Hannah Roberts, Nicholas Roberts, Andrew Shulman, Anna Shuttleworth, Philip Sheppard, Derek Simpson, David Strange, Neil Tarlton, Nick Trygstad, Eduardo Vassallo, Raphael Wallfisch and Sung-Won Yang

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Catherine Ardagh-Walter

Catherine Ardagh-Walter was born in Winchester, Hampshire and commenced 'cello studies at the age of seven. After studying with Eileen Croxford, Philip de Groote and Amaryllis Fleming, she graduated from the Royal College of Music in 1989 with the Performers' Diploma and major prizes and went on to perform throughout England as a duo-recitalist with the pianist, Emily Jeffrey. Performances included a series of recitals at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Trafalgar Square, live broadcasts on Classic FM and a debut recital at the Purcell Room. Catherine took up her post as 'cellist with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 1995 and in addition to her work with the orchestra she has a busy schedule of teaching and Chamber Music Performing. She is a cello tutor at Birmingham Conservatoire, and has appeared with the Birmingham Ensemble and Birmingham Contemporary Music Group. She regularly plays as part of the CBSO's 'Centrestage' Chamber series and has enjoyed working with artists such as Akiko Suwanai, Paul Lewis, Truls Mork, Peter Donohoe, Christian Tetzlaff and Baibe Skride. Catherine has two small boys who keep her laughing and plays on an Italian cello made in 1560 by Gaspar da Salo.

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Eduardo Vassallo

Eduardo Vassallo began his studies in his native Buenos Aires, Argentina, and by the age of 17 he was a founder member of the String Quartet of the National Radio, and the solo cellist of the National Symphony Orchestra. He then came to Europe to continue his studies at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Gstaad, Switzerland, where, as a member of the Camerata Lysy Gstaad, he took part in numerous recordings, and toured throughout the world, working closely with Sir Yehudi Menuhin and Alberto Lysy. Following a move to Germany, Eduardo became increasingly active in the field of contemporary music, as a member of the WNC Ensemble für Moderne Musik. In 1989 he became Principal Cellist of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, firstly under the musical direction of Sir Simon Rattle, then Sakari Oramo and now Andris Nelsons.

He was one of the founding directors of the Birmingham Ensemble (a chamber group drawn from the ranks of the CBSO). He has also guest-led the cello sections of the Philharmonia, the Royal Philharmonic and London Philharmonic Orchestras, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

As a soloist he has given recitals throughout Europe and South America, and has appeared frequently with various orchestras. In Birmingham, he has performed Bloch's Schelomo, Shostakovich 1st Cello Concerto , Haydn D Major Cello Concerto and Elgar Cello Concerto with the CBSO. In England he gave the world premieres of the Sonata for cello and piano and the Duo II for violin and cello by his compatriot Jorge Bosso, and the Sinfonia Concertante by Indian composer Vanraj Bhatia. In Buenos Aires he gave the first performance of the cello concerto "Auris Concertum" by Argentine Alejandro Civilloti with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Buenos Aires, and the Grand Tango by Astor Piazzolla. Eduardo has released two solo recital CDs, one devoted to works by Latin American Masters on the ASV label, and "Tangos by Piazzolla" on the Somm label. His love for the tango led him to form "El Ultimo Tango”, a quintet dedicated to music from Buenos Aires, with whom he has released two CDs. He was also a guest artist on the CD "Conception" by the jazz fusion John Turville Trio. In 2009, he formed a collaboration with Tim Garland (saxophone) and Marcelo Nisinman (bandoneon) to create a multimedia jazz/tango fusion show called Transtango, first performed in the Bloomsbury Theatre in London, then at various festivals around the country (Salisbury Festival, Vamos Festival Newcastle, Buxton Festival etc). As a result of this collaboration, the CBSO commissioned Tim Garland to write a double concerto for cello and saxophone to celebrate Eduardo's 20 years in the orchestra, which he performed with the composer under the direction of Christian Jarvi. Eduardo teaches at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester and has taught at summer courses in Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, England, and South America. He participates annually in the International Festival of Chamber Music in Formosa, Argentina, and founded and directs the Latin-American Cello Festival, which takes place every two years in Buenos Aires. Eduardo Vassallo plays a Paolo Testore cello made in Milan 1710 and a Ferdinando Gagliano cello made in Napoli 1792.