ClefLogo  Concert 3 - Biographical Notes

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Callum Smart and Richard Uttley Richard Uttley's photo by Cathy Pyle    

Concert No.3

Saturday 20th November 2021 at 3pm
at Clonter Opera Theatre

Callum Smart (Violin)
Richard Uttley (Piano)

Making Music Selected Artists   

  “…the sincerity of Smart’s singing line is cause for celebration”
- Andrew Parker, International Record Review

Callum Smart

Callum Smart is quickly developing an international reputation as one of Britain’s finest young violinists. Playing with ‘an inherent nobility that speaks to the heart’ (International Record Review), he is celebrated for combining ‘brilliant technique with the confidence to take risks’ (Bachtrack) and his ‘utterly convincing’ interpretations (BBC Music Magazine).

Recognised as a rising star since winning the BBC Young Musician strings category and being the top European prize-winner at the Menuhin Competition in 2010, Smart now enjoys concert appearances with the UK’s leading orchestras, including re-invitations to the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and the Philharmonia Orchestra. In 2020-21, Callum makes his debut with the Hallé Orchestra performing Korngold’s Violin Concerto, and also a Boston debut with the Lexington Symphony Orchestra performing Elgar’s Violin Concerto.

Last season, he made his debut with the BBC Philharmonic performing Berg’s Violin Concerto, and this season sees his return to the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and debut with the Manchester Camerata. Previous season highlights include his North American debut with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as performances with the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, European Union Chamber Orchestra, Orpheus Sinfonia and Polish Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra, covering a range of concerto repertoire from Mozart and Beethoven to Glazunov, Britten, Prokofiev, Elgar, Weill, and Korngold.

As a recitalist, Smart performs at some of the world’s most prestigious venues including London’s Wigmore Hall, the Konzerthaus Berlin and the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, and at a number of European festivals including the Cheltenham Festival, Dvorak Festival in Prague, Menuhin Festival, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and the Malmo International String Festival. Smart’s partnership with Richard Uttley continues this season with recitals across the UK; they are also joined by horn player Ben Goldscheider for a series of concerts as The Ashwell Trio.

Continuing his advocacy for new music, Smart worked with composer George Benjamin to perform his Three Pieces for solo violin at both the Wigmore Hall and the Royal Northern College of Music. He also performed Kaija Saariaho’s Nocturne for solo violin at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.

Now with two recital discs to his name, 2016 saw the release of Smart’s second disc on the Orchid Classics Label with pianist Richard Uttley. ‘La Voix’ – including works by Fauré, Poulenc and Ravel – featured as one of the Strad Magazine’s recommended recordings of the month, and was accorded 4 star reviews both in the BBC Music Magazine and the Observer.

Having returned to the UK following his Premier Young Artist scholarship at the Jacobs School of Music in the United States studying with Mauricio Fuks, Smart took up a place on the International Artist Diploma postgraduate course at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) studying with Ana Chumachenco and Noah Bendix-Bagley. Having made an immediate impact on his return, he was subsequently appointed as a violin tutor at the RNCM.

Smart plays on a c.1730-35 violin by Carlo Bergonzi and is a Hattori Foundation Award Winner 2019.

Richard Uttley

Noted for the integrity and breadth of his musicianship as soloist, chamber musician and recording artist, Richard has been recognised for his ‘musical intelligence and pristine facility’ (International Record Review), ‘amazing decisiveness’, and ‘tumultuous performance’ (Daily Telegraph). His playing is frequently broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and has featured on BBC Two, BBC Four, Classic FM and Sky Arts. He won the British Contemporary Piano Competition in 2006 and was selected for representation by Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) in 2011.

Richard studied with Ian Buckle at the Junior School of the Royal Northern College of Music, before going on to read Music at Clare College, Cambridge (graduating with a double first in 2008), and studying with Martin Roscoe at Guildhall School. His London debut at the Southbank Centre’s Purcell Room in 2010 was described by The Times as a ‘brilliant recital’. Richard has since released several solo recordings to critical acclaim and performed as recitalist and concerto soloist at venues including Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, and, further afield, at Banff Centre (Alberta), Klangspuren Festival (Austria), and on tour in China.

Highlights this season include solo recitals in Music on Main’s Modulus Festival (Vancouver), Gershwin’s Concerto in F at Queen Elizabeth Hall, a complete cycle of Beethoven’s sonatas for piano and violin with Savitri Grier, a series of chamber music concerts curated by clarinettist/composer Mark Simpson at Saffron Hall, and the premiere of a new work written for Richard by Kate Whitley.

Richard regularly collaborates with other leading instrumentalists and has attended Open Chamber Music at the International Musicians Seminar in Prussia Cove. His recording of French repertoire with violinist Callum Smart, La Voix (Orchid Classics, 2016), was a Selected Recording in The Strad, and the pair subsequently performed in the Auditorium du Louvre and Konzerthaus Berlin. Richard’s other long-standing collaborators include: clarinettist Mark Simpson, with whom he has appeared at Manchester International Festival and recorded for TV and radio; violinist Savitri Grier, with whom he has appeared at Harrogate International Festival and toured in China; and pianist Kate Whitley, with whom he has performed at the Multi-Story Chamber Series and En Blanc Et Noir festival (France). He has also partnered Peter Moore (principal trombone, LSO) on tour in Columbia and Olivier Stankiewicz (principal oboe, LSO) at Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Germany) and the Barbican Centre. In more unusual projects, Richard collaborated with artist Nat Urazmetova for a concert with video at the Occupy the Pianos festival at St John’s Smith Square, and with author Madeleine Thien for an event centred around her Do Not Say We Have Nothing and Bach’s Goldberg Variations at Bath Festival.

A passionate exponent of new music, Richard has given major solo recitals at Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival and regularly commissions new work. He has given world premieres of pieces by composers including Julian Anderson, Fransisco Coll, Michael Cutting, Rolf Hind, Matthew Kaner, Daniel Kidane, Naomi Pinnock, Mark Simpson, Dobrinka Tabakova, and Sinta Wullur. He was a Trustee of New Dots – a charity promoting new music and supporting emerging composers – from 2013 to 2016. In 2018, Richard and composer Kate Whitley became the first UK prize winners of the Yvar Mikhashoff Trust Pianist/Composer Commission prize.

Richard is a contributor to Edition Peters’ Piano Masterworks series on the Tido Music iPad app, which includes films of him performing and giving tutorials on core piano repertoire. He also records for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music’s Piano Syllabus CDs. Richard teaches at Guildhall School, City University and the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama.



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