Can you imaging perfecting your bowing technique on the violoncello alongside some of the best cellists in the world? Or perhaps discovering with their help, basic vibrato techniques? Our students learning the violoncello had just such an opportunity with John Paul Friedhoff, one of the best well known international cellists. He gave a Masterclass at the School which, above all, wanted to build on students´ enthusiasm and help promote their learning and passion for the violoncello. Our KS2 cello students were also able to take part and listen to the theory part of the Masterclass.
John Paul Friedhoff, born in Oregon, is currently a soloist with the Madrid Symphony Orchestra and a member of the Madrid Ensemble, the Degani Quartet and a founding member of the Madrid Cellos Quartet and the Bellas Artes trio. As well as his extensive carreer as a musician, Friedhoff has played a huge role in education, teaching as a Professor in a variety of universities around the world, including Spain, where he is a visiting Professor with several different orchestras.
The objective of this Masterclass was for students to learn more about the range of musical possibilities of the violoncello, away from the classroom. They were also able to get to know the different musical roles of a violoncellist (soloist, orchestra musician, teacher, etc.). And also to give them the experience of playing alongside a professional cellist, understand the importance of this instrument around the world, as well as, the music culture and history of this instrument.
It has undoubtedly been an incredible and positive experience which widened the technical and playing skills of the children and gave them a different perspective on the violoncello.