“I’d trust the violinist who wedded works by Roy Harris and John Adams on one of the most absorbing concerto discs for many years, to bring us interesting repertoire, and that is exactly what Tamsin Waley-Cohen does here. [Richard Blackford’s writing in Niobe] is thematically concentrated, notably evocative and clearly heartfelt. It is close to Szymanowski in sound and in its solutions in pitting a solo violin against a lustrous orchestra. A particularly lustrous orchestra in this case, the Czech Philharmonic, against which Waley-Cohen’s violin tone is characteristically strong and steely, notably in the double-stop cadenza over a drone in ‘The Mourner’.”
Gramophone Magazine (Andrew Mellor), September 2018
The heart gives a little leap at the prospect of Dvorak chamber music, especially when it comes from a duo as engaging and intelligent as Tamsin Waley-Cohen and Huw Watkins. […] It feels as though these performers have got the scale of this music just right: Nothing forced, no obvious straining for effect, just fresh, thoughtful and committed interpretations shot through with poetry and alertness. This is real chamber music.
Gramophone (Richard Bratby), January 2018
“Waley-Cohen captures the score’s spirit of infectious bonhomie to perfection, and brings a similar air of uncluttered simplicity and ingenuousness to the Four Romantic Pieces [by Dvorak], creating the bracing impression of inspired improvisation.”
–The Strad (Julian Haylock) (Review of Bohemia (CD), 2017
“One of this year’s [Rising Stars] artists is the terrific British violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen … In a programme that included a febrile and rhapsodic account of Poulenc’s Violin Sonata, Waley-Cohen gave the London premiere of Oliver Knussen’s Reflection ... this beautifully crafted eight-minute work is made of tiny aural brushstrokes suggesting water: ripples mirroring each other and bursting out in expression and ecstatic high lines.”
–The Observer (Fiona Maddocks), 2017
“Oliver Knussen’s eight-minute Reflection (2016), for violin and piano, had its London premiere from Tamsin Waley-Cohen and James Baillieu, superb players both. With its stylistic assurance and fresh-sounding impressionism ... it seemed a piece long present in the canon.”
–The Sunday Times (Paul Driver), 2017
“During the orchestral introduction, the soloist visibly entered into the soundworld, and this was echoed in the later orchestra-only sections, when her body language showed she was living the music with them. In every sense of the word, there was harmony between all players, a great feeling of supporting each other. The whole concerto was a triumph, but special mention goes to her pin-drop cadenza in the first movement, with eloquent silences and an exciting sense of anticipation. Affectionate applause was followed by Waley-Cohen's exquisite encore in the shape of J.S. Bach's Sarabande.”
–Bachtrack (David Mellor)
“Tamsin Waley-Cohen launches into Szymanowski’s Sonata with gusto, her bow rasping on the string in the composer’s passionate flights, her sound meltingly beautiful and fragile in his graceful melodies. She has a potent rhetorical style, moving neatly from dramatic flourishes and cadenzas into gentle lyricism.”
Described by the Guardian as a performer of "fearless intensity", former ECHO Rising Star Tamsin Waley-Cohen has established herself as one of the most insightful and versatile young British violinists.
Last season, Tamsin made her debut with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Ben Gernon, performing and recording the world premiere of a new violin concerto by British composer Richard Blackford, which has recently been released by Signum Records, whilst in 2018/19 she visits Japan for her debut with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, with whom she performs Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto under Ken-Ichiro Kobayashi. She also makes her debut with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales under Ryan Bancroft and collaborates again with Ben Gernon, performing Mozart’s 5thviolin concerto with the Brighton Philharmonic Orchestra.
She has recently performed with numerous orchestras, including the Hallé Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra under Vasily Petrenko,
Royal Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestras, the Royal Northern Sinfonia and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra.
Tamsin’s constant ambition to explore new artistic goals has led her to build up a wide ranging chamber music network and in 2016, she founded a new string quartet, the Albion Quartet, which has already made its debuts at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, and Aldeburgh Festival. Her interest in contemporary music has led to strong relationships with composers including the late Oliver Knussen – who wrote a new work for violin and piano for her 2016 ECHO tour, – and Huw Watkins, who is her duo partner, and will write a new work for her to be premiered at Wigmore Hall in 2020. Other regular chamber partners include James Baillieu, Camille Thomas and Annelien van Wauwe. Tamsin is also Artistic Director of the Honeymead Festival on Exmoor, now in it’s 12th year.
In the past season she returned to Wigmore Hall, Saffron Hall,…