Chandos People

Michael Lloyd

Michael Lloyd was appointed Music Director and Principal Conductor of Chandos Symphony Orchestra in 1988. He was born in Worcestershire and began his music studies at the Birmingham School of Music before taking a music degree at the University of East Anglia. From there he went to the Royal College of Music, concentrating mainly on piano accompaniment. He joined Scottish Ballet as company pianist and it was with this company that he began conducting.

In 1972 he joined the Staatstheater Kassel, Germany, initially as ballet conductor and pianist, but after only one season he was offered a post on the opera staff and made his opera debut there, conducting several performances of major operas. Whilst he was in Kassel, Michael formed a piano trio and became Chorus Master of the Kasseler Konzertchor.

In 1980 he moved to Stuttgart to continue his operatic conducting. At the same time he worked regularly as an Associate Chorus Master for the Stuttgart Philharmonic Vocal Ensemble, the South German Madrigal Choir and the South German Radio Chorus. He was also very active in chamber music and as a continuo player, appearing regularly as the latter with the Ludwigsburg Festival Orchestra, with whom he toured France and the Far East.

In 1985 he joined the music staff at English National Opera in London, making his conducting debut in 1986. In 1990 he was appointed Assistant Music Director. He conducted regularly at the Coliseum, home of the ENO, and on tour. In addition to teaching regularly at the Opera School of the Royal College of Music, he has conducted concerts at all the major venues in London, and at Symphony Hall, Birmingham. He has conducted in Japan, Korea and New Zealand, where his performances with Wellington City Opera have received high critical acclaim. In 1997 he also conducted two performances of Britten’s War Requiem with the Auckland Philharmonia and a concert in Dunedin with the Dunedin Sinfonia. He is returning soon to New Zealand, where he will conduct concerts with the Wellington And Dunedin Sinfonias, and for the third time the final of New Zealand’s prestigious young singers’ competition the Mobil SongQuest. Michael is also Music Director of the Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra.

Dan Watson

Dan completed a Masters in orchestral conducting at Birmingham Conservatoire, and has studied with Michael Seal, Sian Edwards, Edwin Roxborough, Daniele Rosina and others. He won an MBF Emerging Excellence Award and Birmingham Conservatoire’s Conducting Prize. Currently Dan holds principal and guest conductorships with a number of orchestras across the Midlands, and also regularly works with Royal Birmingham Conservatoire’s LEAP Ensemble, which is dedicated to enthusing young musicians to pursue a lifelong passion in creating and performing.

Upcoming performances include a concert in November with the Hull Philharmonic Orchestra, in which Dan will conduct the Rossini’s Bassoon Concerto with Adam MacKenzie of Opera North, together with Tchaikovsky’s 4th Symphony and Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. Dan was also recently appointed as the conductor of the NLMS Summer School Symphony Orchestra and took up this role for the first time last month, conducting amongst others, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition.

Dan featured in the BBC series All Together Now: The Great Orchestra Challenge, as then principal conductor of The People’s Orchestra. The program, designed to inspire and promote amateur music making, reflects many of Dan’s continued aims as a conductor, to bring together professionals and community musicians alike, culminating in high standard performances and rewarding life experiences.

He lives in Barwell, Leicestershire, with wife Sally, cat Morris, and an increasingly inquisitive daughter, Bethan, who was born in December 2017.

Kelly McCusker

Born in London, Kelly attended the Purcell School of music and Kingston University before gaining a distinction in her Masters Music Performance at the Birmingham Conservatoire where she was also a violin tutor 1996–2000. During her time at Birmingham, she studied both modern and baroque violin with Gabrielle Lester and Mica Comberti respectively along with winning the 1st violin place on the CBSO training scheme.

In 2002 she was made an honorary member of the Conservatoire.

She regularly performs with a variety of orchestras and ensembles including CBSO baroque, guest leader with Viva Sinfonia, Jocelyn Pook ensemble, Royal Shakespeare Company (including a tour to Washington DC), St James Baroque Players (BBC Prom 2000) and the National Theatre in London.

Kelly is a co-principle player of the Longborough Opera orchestra specialising
in Wagner, baroque group Fiori Muiscali, Armonico Consort and is principle 2nd violinist with the Hanover Band who regularly tour around Europe and have made numerous recordings, performed at the Beijing Festival and are Ensemble in residence at Chichester University working alongside students on a Beethoven project. During lockdown 2020, the Hanover Band recorded and streamed all nine Beethoven Symphonies to great acclaim.

In 2018, she was the violinist and singer in a theatre project titled Memorial performing in Adelaide and Brisbane along with a residency at the Barbican Centre in London.

Alongside her classical performances, Kelly also enjoys playing her five string electric violin
in a local band – she plays and sings pop songs ranging from Abba to Adele giving her the opportunity to let her hair down and improvise! Being a diverse musician is important to her along with sharing her musical experiences with her pupils at Repton and Repton Prep schools.

Daniel Rowland

Daniel has established himself on the international scene as a highly versatile, charismatic and adventurous performer, with a wide ranging repertoire. In recent seasons Daniel has performed with orchestras from Tromso in the north of Norway to Cape Town, in concertos from Beethoven and Brahms to Elgar, Berg, Korngold, Weinberg, Prokoffief and Schnittke and has worked with leading conductors such as Heinz Holliger, Jaap van Zweden, Francois Xavier Roth, Lawrence Foster, Anthony Hermus, Rossen Milanov and Andrey Boreiko.
He loves championing contemporary composers and is a passionate advocate of concertos such as those by Vasks, Lindberg, Glass, Saariaho and Van der Aa. In 2017 he premiered Isidora Zebeljan’s Violin Concerto Three Curious Loves and this autumn sees the premiere of Roxana Panufnik’s Songs of Love and Friendship with the Dutch Radio Choir at the Concertgebouw. September 2020 saw the release of Daniel’s

newest CD Distant Light for Challenge Records with violin concertos by Peteris Vasks, recorded live at the Stiftfestival 2019 with the composer present. (‘A beautiful ode to Vasks – rich in tension and magic’ – NRC Handelsblad.)

A passionate chamber musician, Daniel has performed with artists as diverse as Ivry Gitlis, Heinz Holliger, Gilles Apap, Anna Fedorova, Alexander Lonquich, Nino Gvetadze, Michael Collins, Nicolas Daniel, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Lars Vogt, Alberto Mesirca, Willard White and Elvis Costello. He is a frequent guest at foremost international chamber music festivals such as Kuhmo, Stellenbosch, Risor, Sonoro, Rio de Janeiro, Chiemgau and Osnabrück. Daniel is part of acclaimed duo partnerships with pianist Natacha Kudritskaya, ‘a perfect partnership’ according to BBC Music Magazine, and with cellist Maja Bogdanovic, whose recent duo CD Pas de Deux (Challenge Records) included five world premieres and was described as ‘a magical meeting between violin and cello’ by Dutch

daily NRC Handelsblad. He is also a founding member of the cutting-edge Tango Quintet with bandoneon virtuoso/composer Marcelo Nisinman. (‘An ensemble with the power of dynamite’ – Süddeutsche Zeitung.)

In 2005 Daniel founded the Stift International Music Festival in the bucolic region of Twente
in the eastern Netherlands, where he grew up, with the fifteenth century Stiftkerk as the main venue. The festival has garnered acclaim as one of great intimacy, adventure and atmosphere. Daniel was for twelve years the leader of the Brodsky Quartet, performing all over the world, and making numerous recordings, including the celebrated Shostakowitch Cycle. He teaches at the Royal College of Music in London.

Daniel was born in London, and started his violin lessons in Enschede after his parents moved to Twente in the eastern Netherlands. He studied with Jan Repko, Davina van Wely,

Herman Krebbers, Viktor Liberman and Igor Oistrakh. Meeting Ivry Gitlis in 1995 was of great significance, leading to lessons in Paris and, later, to musical collaborations. Daniel’s competition successes include first prize at the 1995 Oskar Back competition at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the Brahms Prize in Baden-Baden. His violin is by Lorenzo Storioni (Cremona 1796), and his bow is a Maline, kindly loaned by the Dutch Instrument Foundation.

David Cohen

David Cohen has established a reputation as one of the most charismatic and exciting young cellists of today, hailed by critics as ‘Magnificent’ (Gramophone), ‘demonstrates total commitment, combining vitality with expressive feeling in the most spontaneous manner,’ (Strad) and ‘an individual, and an exceptionally gifted one,’ (New York Stereo Review).

Born in the town of Tournai in Belgium, David made his solo debut with the Belgium National Orchestra at the age of nine and his international career as a soloist soon flourished with invitations from the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the London Soloists Chamber Orchestra, l’Orchestre Philharmonique de Liege, l’Orchestre Symphonique de la VRT, l’Orchestre de la Beethoven Akademie, l’Orchestre National de Lille, the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, l’Orchestre de Chambre de Lauzanne, l’Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, l’Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, l’Orchestre Symphonique de Grenoble, the Polish Philharmonic Orchestra, the Sinfonia Varsovia, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Seoul Philharmonic, the N.H.K. Symphony Orchestra, as well as the BBC Concert Orchestra. During this remarkable career, David has also worked as a soloist with some of the most distinguished conductors in the industry such as Lord Menuhin, Mstislav Rostropovich, Walter Weller, Sir Charles Mackerras, Vladimir Ashkenazy,Christophe von Dohnanyi, Pedro Halffter and Martin Brabbins among others. He also performs with Nigel Kennedy.

David has studied with the finest cellists: Wiliam Pleeth, Melissa Pheleps, Lynn Harrel, Daniil Schafran, Nathalia Gutman, Gary Hofman, Bernard Greenhouse, Steven Isserlis, Boris Pergamenschikow, Lord Menuhin, Mstislav Rostropovich and Oleg Kogan. As a graduate of the Yehudi Menuhin School, the Guildhall School of Music & Drama and thanks to a grant from the Menuhin Foundation, David has won more than twenty-five prizes in International Cello Competitions. Among his prizes and awards are the Gold Medal of the G.S.M.D. in London, (following in the footstep of Jaqueline Dupre), the Geneva International Cello Competition, J. S. Bach International Competition, the Audi International Competition, the Douai International Cello Competition, the Tenuto International Competition, the Guilhermina Suggia Gift, the Ian Fleming Trust, the S.P.E.S Award, the KPMG Martin Scholarship, the Hattori Foundation Award, the Borletti Buitoni Fellowship Award and the Fondation SUISA Award.

In March 2001, at the age of twenty, David was appointed principal cello of the Philharmonia Orchestra, becoming the youngest ever principal cello in history.

He was nominated ECHO ‘rising star’ for the season 2002–3 by the Royal Philharmonic Society of Belgium and the Concertgebouw, performing a world tour in the greatest halls including Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Vienna Musikverein, Paris Theatre des Champs Elysees, Cologne Philharmonie, Bruxelles Palais des Beaux Arts and in the cities of Helsinki, Athens and Birmingham.

Mr Cohen is a passionate pedagogue and has been teaching since 1998 in master classes around the world such as Cividale (Italy), Dinant (Belgium), Kuhmo (Finland), Stift (Holland), Tokyo (Japan), Bejing (China). He holds a professorship at the prestigious Conservatoire Royal de Musique de Mons in Belgium since the year 2000.

David is also a passionate chamber musician and regularly performs in major festivals with the finest young talents of Europe. He is regularly invited to International Chamber Music and Cello Festivals such as Kronberg (Germany), Manchester (UK), Cambridge (UK), Beauvais (France), Orpheus Baccheus in Bordeaux (France), the Gstaad Festival (Suisse), West Cork (Ireland), Kuhmo (Finland), Elverum (Norway), Oxford (UK), Sonoro (Romania) to name a few.

David is the artistic director of the Melchior Ensemble, which brings together the greatest young talents of Europe such as Sasha Sitkovetsky, Priya Mitchel, Corinne Chapelle, Natalie Clein, Silver Ainomae and Razvan Popovici. The ensemble is in residence at Peter House Cambridge. David is also the Artistic Director and founder of the exciting new chamber music festival, Les Sons Intensifs in Lessines, Belgium.

Award-winning recordings by David can be found with Forlane, Classic FM, Cypres-Records and the LPO Label. His recordings of the Lutoslawsky Cello Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra and the Sophia Gubbaidulina Concerto recording with the BBC Symphony are ready to be released.

David plays on the ex-Pergamenschikow cello, a magnificient Dominicus Montagnana circa 1735, thanks to the kindness and generosity of Mrs Pat Morton and the help of the Razumovsky Trust.

David Cohen, one of the most talented young cellists I know. He was a student at my school for some years, and is altogether a remarkable young man, a remarkable performer and already an outstanding cellist.

(Lord Menuhin, December 1998)