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Biography

The American cellist Kevin Downs is an active chamber musician and solo recitalist currently based in The Hague.  He has appeared as a soloist with orchestra, and in frequent recitals across North America and Europe, most recently at the Fondation des États-Unis in Paris, and the Schoenbergzaal in The Hague.  A special love for chamber music has led Kevin to perform at many prestigious music festivals, including the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, the Perlman Music Program, and the Banff Centre Chamber Music Residency, among others.  Here he worked with such renowned ensembles and musicians as the Tokyo and Juilliard String Quartets, members of the Cleveland String Quartet, and Itzhak Perlman.  During the 2010-2011 season, he performed in recitals with piano trio in New York City, Boston, The Hague, and in Normandy, France, as a result of receiving the Prix du Forum at the Forum Musical de Normandie.  In addition to the standard solo and chamber music repertoire, Kevin possesses an interest in contemporary music as well as in the historical performance of early music.  Not only was he a member of the Harvard Baroque Chamber Orchestra and the New England Conservatory Collegium Consort, but Kevin also has given many world premieres by living composers, both in the United States and Europe.  Most recently he took part in a collaboration on a newly written piece for 2 cellists and dancer which was premiered at the Korzo Theater in The Hague.  During October of 2011, Kevin was highly involved in the festival celebrating the work of the Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho, giving a performance of her solo cello piece, Sept Papillons, and leading an ensemble of eight celli in Neiges

 

Kevin attended the Cleveland Institute of Music as an undergraduate, where he received his Bachelor of Music as a student of Richard Aaron, and subsequently received his Master of Music at the New England Conservatory in Boston under the guidance of Paul Katz.  From there he moved to Paris as a recipient of the Harriet Hale Woolley grant for artists and musicians from the Fondation des États-Unis, and currently he studies with Michel Strauss and Jan-Ype Nota at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague.  Kevin plays on a modern cello made by the Canadian luthier Martin Héroux in 2007.


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