Acclaimed worldwide for his technique and musicianship, cellist Steven Isserlis enjoys a uniquely varied career as a soloist, chamber musician, recording artist, educator, author and broadcaster. He appears with the world’s leading orchestras and conductors, and gives recitals in major musical centres. As a chamber musician has curated concert series for many prestigious venues, including London’s Wigmore Hall, New York’s 92nd Street Y and the Salzburg Festival. Unusually, he also directs chamber orchestras from the cello in classical programmes. Since 1997, he has been artistic director of the International Musicians Seminar at Prussia Cove, Cornwall.

He has a strong interest in historical performance, working with many period-instrument orchestras and giving recitals with harpsichord and fortepiano. He is also a keen exponent of contemporary music and has premièred many new works, including Sir John Tavener’s The Protecting Veil, Thomas Adès’s Lieux retrouvés, three works for solo cello by György Kurtág, and pieces by Heinz Holleger and Jörg Widmann.

Steven’s wide-ranging discography includes J S Bach’s complete solo cello suites (Gramophone’s Instrumental Album of the Year), Beethoven’s complete works for cello and piano, concertos by C P E Bach and Haydn, the Elgar and Walton concertos, the Brahms double concerto with Joshua Bell and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, and late works by John Tavener (BBC Music magazine’s Premiere Award.) His latest recording, A Golden Cello Decade 1878 – 1888, was released worldwide in November 2022.

He also enjoys playing for children, and has created three musical stories, with the composer Anne Dudley. As an author, his two books for children have been translated into many languages, and has also authored a commentary on Schumann’s famous Advice for Young Musicians. His latest book, a critically-acclaimed companion to the Bach cello suites, is published in paperback in March 2023.

He has also devised and written two evenings of words and music, one describing the last years of Robert Schumann, the other devoted to Marcel Proust and his salons, and has presented many programmes for radio, including documentaries about two of his heroes – Robert Schumann and Harpo Marx.

The recipient of many awards, his honours include a CBE in recognition of his services to music, the Schumann Prize of the City of Zwickau, the Piatigorsky Prize and Maestro Foundation Genius Grant (USA), the Gold Medal awarded by the Armenian Ministry of Culture, the Glashütte Original Music Festival Award (Germany), and the Wigmore Medal (UK).

Steven plays the ‘Marquis de Corberon’ Stradivarius of 1726, on loan from the Royal Academy of Music.

Apollo 13 in Concert poster