Stephen Upshaw, co-director & violist
Since making his concerto debut at 17, he has won several competitions and played in festivals around the world including IMS Prussia Cove, City of London Festival, Oxford Chamber Music Festival, Viana Chamber Music Festival (Portugal) and Salzburg Chamber Music Festival (Austria) alongside artists such as Gary Hoffman, Philippe Graffin and Jennifer Stumm. In recent seasons, recital and chamber music engagements have brought him to Boston’s Jordan Hall, London’s Barbican and Wigmore Halls, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and Vienna’s Schoenberg Center.
He also makes his UK concerto debut this year appearing as soloist with the English Chamber Orchestra.
A noted interpreter of contemporary music, Stephen has given numerous national and international premieres and performed with groups such as the Harvard Group for New Music, the Callithumpian Consort (Boston) and the Bodø Sinfonietta (Norway), working closely with composers such as Julian Anderson, George Benjamin and Christian Wolff.
Additionally, Stephen has a strong interest in synthesizing music with other fields and has helped realize collaborative projects with the Boston Architectural College, Transport Theatre Company, Rambert Dance Company and Parasol Unit Art Space. He is also the artistic director of “Sounding Motion” – a new company exploring the relationship between live contemporary chamber music and dance.
A native of Atlanta, he studied with Dr. Marilyn Seelman before earning a BMus(Hon) from the New England Conservatory in Boston where he studied with Carol Rodland and Martha Strongin-Katz. Additionally, he has appeared in masterclasses with Thomas Riebl, Kim Kashkashian, Pinchas Zukerman and Nobuko Imai.
Stephen completed his Postgraduate studies in the class of David Takeno at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he was elected a Junior Fellow, and is grateful for support from the Guildhall School Trust, the Albert Cooper Memorial Trust and the Nicholas Boas Charitable Trust.
Stephen plays on a rare 1715 Daniel Parker viola kindly loaned to him by the Thomas Fredrick Willetts Foundation, where he is presently Artist in Residence.