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Paul Watkins enjoys a distinguished career both as a cellist and as a conductor, and in the 2009–2010 season he became the first-ever Music Director of the English Chamber Orchestra. As solo cellist he performs regularly with all the major British orchestras including the London Philharmonic, the Royal Philharmonic, London’s Philharmonia, and the City of Birmingham Symphony. Outside the UK, he has performed with the Netherlands Philharmonic, Melbourne Symphony, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, and RAI National Symphony Orchestra of Turin. Recent highlights include his debut at Carnegie Hall performing Brahms’s Double Concerto with Daniel Hope and appearances with the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony, London’s Philharmonia, and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. He also was the dedicatee of Mark-Anthony Turnage’s new concerto, premiering it with the Royal Flemish, Tampere, and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestras and the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig. A dedicated chamber musician, he was a member of the Nash Ensemble from 1997 to 2013 and joined the Emerson String Quartet in 2013. He has given solo recitals at Wigmore Hall, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, South Bank Centre, Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, and Queens Hall in Edinburgh. In 2009 he signed an exclusive contract with Chandos Records. Recent releases include the Delius, Elgar, and LutosÅ‚awski concerti and discs of British music for cello and piano. In 2014 he was appointed Artistic Director of the Great Lakes Music Festival of Detroit. Paul Watkins plays a cello made by Domenico Montagnana and Matteo Goffriller in Venice, ca. 1730.
Paul Watkins will perform in Concert Program IV (July 27) and Concert Program V (July 29 and 30).