Colin Carr

soloist Colin Carr standing with his cello in a concert hall.

Cellist Colin Carr sat down with Inside the Notes to discuss his incredible musical journey. From performing with Menuhin as a teenager, to his illustrious solo and chamber career, Colin’s unique career has taken him to the world’s great concert halls. In this interview we discuss all aspects of his career from the early years at The Menuhin School, becoming a competition winner, a soloist, a lifelong chamber musicians and now a trusted teacher.

Colin Carr, cello

Inside the Notes sat down to chat with cellist, Colin Carr. We discuss his early life studying at the Menuhin school, his career as a soloist and chamber musician, and his seemingly endless energy as he teaches in both the UK and New York.

Colin Carr appears throughout the world as a soloist, chamber musician, recording artist, and teacher. He has played with major orchestras worldwide, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, The Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, the orchestras of Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington, Philadelphia, Montréal and all the major orchestras of Australia and New Zealand. Conductors with whom he has worked include Rattle, Gergiev, Dutoit, Elder, Skrowasczewski and Marriner. He has been a regular guest at the BBC Proms and has twice toured Australia.

Colin Carr sitting in a chair with a tuxedo playing outside.

With his duo partner Thomas Sauer he has played recitals throughout the United States and Europe including New York, Boston, Philadelphia, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and the Wigmore Hall in London. 2016 sees them playing a program of Britten and Adès for both the Chamber Music Societies of New York and Philadelphia. Colin has played complete cycles of the Bach Solo Suites at the Wigmore Hall in London, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Gardner Museum in Boston and in Montreal, Toronto, Ottowa and Vancouver. 

As a member of the Golub-Kaplan-Carr Trio, he recorded and toured extensively for 20 years. Chamber music plays an important role in his musical life. He is a frequent visitor to international chamber music festivals worldwide and has appeared often as a guest with the Guarneri and Emerson string quartets and with New York’s Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. 

young cellist playing in a masterclass with Colin Carr.

Recent CD releases include the complete Bach suites on the Wigmore Live label and the complete Beethoven Sonatas and Variations on the MSR Classics label with Thomas Sauer. Colin is the winner of many prestigious international awards, including First Prize in the Naumburg Competition, the Gregor Piatigorsky Memorial Award, Second Prize in the Rostropovich International Cello Competition and also winner of the Young Concert Artists competition. 

Colin Carr performing with piano in a chamber music setting.

The Early Years

He first played the cello at the age of five. Three years later he went to the Yehudi Menuhin School, where he studied with Maurice Gendron and later William Pleeth. He was made a professor at the Royal Academy of Music in 1998, having been on the faculty of the New England Conservatory in Boston for 16 years. In 1998, St. John’s College, Oxford created the post of “Musician in Residence” for him, and in September 2002 he became a professor at Stony Brook University in New York.

Colin’s cello was made by Matteo Gofriller in Venice in 1730. He makes his home with his wife Caroline and 3 children, Clifford, Frankie and Anya, in an old house outside Oxford.

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