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    Watkinson, Andrew (1953 – Present)

    Conductor, teacher, and violinist from Glasgow, Scotland, who began playing the violin when he was only seven years old and was among the first to attend the Yehudi Menuhin School of Music.  He furthered his studies in Switzerland and the former Soviet Union under the tutelage of Frederick Grinke, Franco Gulli, Yfrah Neaman, and Joseph Szigeti.  One of his first public concerts took place on 7th May 1977, with the York Symphony Orchestra, which featured him as the soloist on Jean Sibelius’s “Violin Concerto in D minor”. 

     

    In 1979, he formed The Endellion Quartet, along with Garfield Jackson, Ralph de Souza, and David Waterman.  One of their earliest offerings was a comprehensive recording of Benjamin Britten’s chamber music for strings, which garnered them Chamber Music Recording of the Year from The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian.  They went on to record several of Franz Joseph Haydn’s string quartets for Naxos in the late ‘80s.  In 1992, they were named the Quartet in Residence at Cambridge University. 

     

    Andrew was also the director and leader of the City of London Sinfonia and toured Australia in 1993.  Their contributions to the classical recording repertoire are legion, but during Andrew’s tenure included:  Grainger Edition, Vol. 3:  Works for Chorus & Orchestra; Holst:  Double Concerto; Holst:  St. Paul’s Suite, Etc.; Mozart – Divertimenti & Serenades; Mozart:  Eine Kleine Nachtmusik; Mozart:  The Horn Concertos; Vanhal:  Symphonies, Vol. 2; Vivaldi:  Cello Concerto, Vol. 1; Vivaldi:  La Stavaganza, Vol. 1; and, Vivaldi:  La Stravaganza, Vol. 2.

     

    His leadership does not stop with The Endellion Quartet and The City of London Sinfonia:  Other orchestras which he has conducted, directed, or led include The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, The Cambridge University Chamber Orchestra, The English Chamber Orchestra, The London Mozart Players, The London Sinfonietta, Orquestra de Cambra Illa de Menorca, and The Yorkshire Late Starters Strings. 

     

    In the late ‘90s, the Endellion Quartet was named Best Chamber Ensemble by the Royal Philharmonic Society.  In 2001, the Royal Northern College of Music made them an Associate Quartet; In 2004, they enjoyed similar honours from The Venue in Leeds, England.  Their recording continued in 2005 with Dvorak/Smetana/Martinu – String Works.  In 2008, they had the honour of accompanying the third round of semifinalists at The Hong Kong International Piano Competition.  They celebrated their 30th anniversary by releasing a comprehensive recording of Beethoven’s string quartets on the Warner Classics label.  Fittingly, they also saw some on-screen time in the documentary, In Search of Beethoven, and embarked on an international tour. 

     

    Andrew is the President of the Welwyn Garden City Orchestra & Chorus and a silver sponsor of the Prince George & District Music Festival. 

     

    Sources:

    1. http://www.hazardchase.co.uk/artists/andrew_watkinson
    2. http://www.lancs-sinf.com/andrewwatkinson.php
    3. http://www.answers.com/topic/endellion-string-quartet
    4. http://www.naxos.com/artistinfo/Andrew_Watkinson_799/799.htm
    5. http://www.insearchofbeethoven.com/performers_and_interviewees.html
    6. http://www.musicforlondon.co.uk/violin_soloist_joanne.htm
    7. http://www.hansgal.com/yso/concerts3.html
    8. http://www.library.unlv.edu/music/collections/stringcds.php
    9. www.visitcambridge.org/VisitCambridge/Download.aspx?p=22&rcid=10&ix=95
    10. http://www.cityoflondonsinfonia.co.uk/index.php?page=334&lang=1
    11. http://puckette.com/details/151972.html
    12. http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/1997/endellion-0409.html
    13. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mozart-Divertimenti-Serenades-Wolfgang-Amadeus/dp/B0000268RX
    14. http://www.classicalarchives.com/artist/26588.html
    15. http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/Name/Andrew-Watkinson/Performer/22390-2
    16. http://www.naxos.com/reviews/reviewslist.asp?catalogueid=8.553324&languageid=EN
    17. http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?site_id=CTRV&album_id=11957
    18. http://www.musicweb-international.com/SandH/2002/Feb02/Endellion.htm
    19. http://www.kazaa.com/album/502448/Dvorak_Smetana_Martinu__String_Works.aspx
    20. http://www.jjmmciutadella.com/2006/concerts.html
    21. http://www.gustavholst.info/recordings/listing.php?recording=49
    22. http://chshk.brinkster.net/pastevents/piano_competition_2008/chamber.htm
    23. http://www.warnerclassicsandjazz.com/artistbiography.php?artist=7925
    24. http://westroad.org/listings/index.php?listing=601
    25. http://musikk.telenormobil.no/site/web3/view.ftl?page=artist&artistId=8538
    26. http://www.hertsdirect.org/libsleisure/art/artseven/artdiary/diaryevent/music/Notice_20100128_205239734
    27. http://pgmusicfestival.com/Music/Pages/Sponsors/Index.aspx
    28. http://www.richardhickoxfoundation.com/discography.html
    29. http://www.classical-artists.com/stephen-stirling/StvStirlg_Samples.htm
    30. http://www.ylss.org/biographies.html

            

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     



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