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Robin Michael (cello)

Richard Booth’s Bookshop, Hay-on-Wye

Tickets: £12 (Students £6)

Please note:  time given for end of concert is approximate.

Tickets in person from Richard Booth's Bookshop, 44 Lion Street, Hay-on-Wye

or by telephone: 01497 820322

or online through Booth's Bookshop

or at the door if seats still available

Please note:  time given for end of concert is approximate.

Robin Michael 2.jpg


The Six Cello Suites for Unaccompanied Cello by Johann Sebastian Bach are some of the most frequently performed and recognizable solo compositions ever written for the cello. Bach most likely composed them during the period 1717–23, when he served as Kapellmeister in Köthen. The title given on the cover of the Anna Magdalena Bach manuscript was Suites à Violoncello Solo senza Basso (Suites for cello solo without bass). These suites are remarkable in that they achieve the effect of implied three- to four-voice music in a single musical line.

As is usual in a Baroque musical suite, after the prelude which begins each suite, all the other movements are based around Baroque dance types; the cello suites are structured in six movements each: prelude, allemande, courante, sarabande, two minuets or two bourées or two gavottes, and a final gigue. The Bach cello suites are considered to be among the most profound of all classical music works. Wilfrid Mellers described them in 1980 as "Monophonic music wherein a man has created a dance of God."


The Hungarian composer Zoltán Kodály wrote his Sonata in B minor for Solo Cello, Op. 8, in 1915. It was first performed in 1918 and published in 1921. It is among the most significant works for solo cello written since J S Bach’s Cello Suites. It contains influences of Debussy and Bartók, as well as the inflections and nuances of Hungarian folk music.

 

Robin Michael studied at the Royal Academy of Music with David Strange and Colin Carr and later with Ferenc Rados. He is principal cellist in Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique, Solo cellist with Orchestre Les Siècles (Paris) as well as regular guest principal cellist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Irish Chamber Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, RTE Concert Orchestra, English Baroque Soloists, English National Opera and Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.

Robin was the cellist in the Fidelio Trio for over 10 years with which he toured Europe, North America, Asia and South Africa. He has also appeared in collaboration with the Dante and Eroica Quartets. Highlights in his discography include the premier recording of Joe Cutler's cello concerto with the BBC Concert Orchestra (NMC), first recording of the original version of Mendelssohn's Octet on period instruments (Resonus) and Fidelio Trio recordings on Naxos, NMC, Métier and Delphian records.

Recent concert highlights include complete Bach and Britten suite cycles in France and London, the South Korean premier of Jonathan Harvey's 'Advaya' for cello and electronics, both Haydn concertos at the Spier festival in South Africa as well as festival appearances in Buenos Aires, Library of Congress, Washington, and European festivals including Cheltenham, Aldeburgh and St Magnus. 

Recent projects include a recording of the Brahms sonatas with Daniel Tong, a Bach suite cycle at the St Magnus Festival, Britten suite cycle at Festival 'Phil Grobi' in the Auvergne and the first Kinnordy Chamber Music Festival in Scotland where he is co-artistic director with Daniel Tong.

Robin plays on a cello made for him by the German Luthier Stephan von Behr, 2010.

Liquid refreshments available

Earlier Event: January 20
Patrick Hemmerlé (piano)
Later Event: March 17
Milly Forrest (soprano)