Richard Tunnicliffe - cello
Cellist and viol player Richard Tunnicliffe has enjoyed a long and varied career at the forefront of Britain's thriving period-instrument movement, combining this with a lively involvement in ‘modern' performance.
He is principal cello with The Avison Ensemble, whose performances and recordings of English string music of the 18th century are meeting with considerable success, and whose recording of the complete works of Arcangelo Corelli, released on Linn Records in 2013, commemorates the 300th anniversary of the composer's death. He is also regularly invited to be principal/continuo cello or viola da gamba soloist with major orchestras. These have included the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, with whom he has been associated since its foundation, the Boston Symphony, Frankfurt Radio S.O., City of Birmingham S.O., English National Opera, Scottish Chamber Orchestra and the London Mozart Players, and under conductors such as Haitink, Rattle, Iván Fischer, Mackerras and Elder.
He is a member of the renowned viol consort Fretwork, known worldwide for their innovative programmes which frequently include new works. Their recording of Purcell's Fantasias (Harmonia Mundi USA) received an award at the 2009 Gramophone awards, and in June 2010 they hosted a week-long series at London's Kings Place, when they premiered works by Alexander Goehr and Orlando Gough. They regularly tour in the USA and Europe, and their most recent recording, a new arrangement of Bach's Goldberg Variations (also for H.M.U.) was released to critical acclaim.
Richard is regularly heard as soloist and chamber musician, and his performances of Bach's Six Cello Suites have been admired in many countries, in venues such as London's Wigmore Hall and Purcell Room, Berlin Schauspielhaus, and the Warsaw Philharmonie, as well as countless smaller venues in Britain, Europe and Australia. He has also performed a choreographed version of the 5th Suite with dancer Elizabeth Lea.
Other recordings include the complete Cello Concerti by 18th century Durham-based composer John Garth with The Avison Ensemble, which was hailed by critics (chosen as ‘Critic's Choice' by Gramophone, ‘Concerto Recording of the Month' by The Strad, and twice selected as ‘Drivetime CD of the Week' by Classic FM), a disc of early Italian music including the complete Solo Cello Music of Domenico Gabrielli, and the Kontakion for cello and piano (with John McCabe) by John Joubert. He has also recorded a wide range of chamber music on both cello and viola da gamba including an extensive series of Baroque sonatas with violinist Elizabeth Wallfisch, Biber's Rosary Sonatas with violinist Pavlo Beznosiuk, Bach and Handel's Flute Sonatas, Mozart's Flute Quartets with Lisa Beznosiuk, and Rossini's String Sonatas with soloists of the OAE. In 1992 he co-founded the Beethoven String Trio of London, recording string trios by Beethoven and also works by the late Buxton Orr: String Trio (written for BST) and two String Quartets.
He teaches Baroque and Classical cello at the Royal College of Music, London, and at CEMPR, Birmingham University, where he has given seminars and directed a performance of Bach's St. John Passion. He has also given master-classes/lecture-recitals at the Universities of Sheffield and Bristol, University of Delaware, The Manhattan School of Music, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Sydney Conservatorium and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.
'Thoroughly engaging, demonstrating mastery of the instrument and of the chosen repertoire.'more >>Gramophone: Awards Issue
'...beautifully understated, and allowing the music to speak for itself. The tempi are relaxed without compromising a sense of line, imparting instead a breadth that suggests to us an expression of Corelli's life and times.'more >>All Music Guide
'...the virtues of the Avison group are once again on full display here; the players achieve a sparkling liveliness...it's beautifully done...'more >>Early Music Review
'This is very much the thinking man or women's Bach.'more >>Fidelity
' it is so beautiful, so beautiful and an almost meditative performance'more >>The Independent
Online Mention: 'The best music of 2012: Classical'MusicWeb International
'Now here's a splendid performance from Richard Tunnicliffe that is certainly worthy of very close scrutiny indeed'.more >>ResMusica
'...ravira les « intellectuels » souhaitant pouvoir observer clairement les arcanes d’une architecture dont la beauté repose dans une perfection sans fioriture inutile.'more >>Audiophile Audition
'To this listener, the whole experience is also an adventurous one, exacerbated by the rhythmical jest and uplifting moments by Tunnicliffe's skilled crafts and virtuosity.'more >>The Strad
'These are weighty interpretations with a broad harmonic sweep.'more >>International Record Review
‘[Tunnicliffe] illuminates these masterpieces with [a] kind of lightly worn elegance and refreshing sobriety…highly recommended.’more >>The Independent on Sunday
'Tunnicliffe's sound is generous and finely grained, the faster dances sharply pointed, the sarabandes dark pools of metreless beauty.'more >>Gramophone
'For those who like their Bach honest and unrefined, this is probably the most appealing recording of these pieces...'more >>Allmusic
'...Tunnicliffe should be appreciated for his artistry and given a thorough hearing'.more >>BBC Music Magazine
‘These recordings have authority, character and a truly distinctive sound fabulously recorded by Linn.’more >>Pizzicato
Astonishing review from Pizzicatomore >>Birmingham Post
'A lovely double-CD set...'more >>The Sunday Times
'His degree of interpretative intervention gauged beautifully...'more >>SA-CD.net
‘Tunnicliffe’s performances are simply magnificent.’more >>MusicWeb International
'...this new recording is a fine addition to the list of distinguished recordings of these Cello Suites.'more >>Music and Words
‘…an evocation of the natural, unadorned, almost sombre beauty he elicits in his Bach.’more >>