Biographical Details

My CV can be downloaded via the attached at the bottom of this page.


Sean Gilde Portrait
I studied with Christopher Bunting and at the BCU Birmingham Conservatoire with Ulrich Heinen, where I graduated with a B.A. (Hons.) Degree and the ABSM Performance and ABSM Recital Diplomas. As well as continuing my studies with William Conway, I was a founding member of the Astaria and Almira String Quartets and in that capacity have given recitals at many of the UK's major Concert Halls, including the Purcell Room, St Johns' Smith Square and Symphony Hall Birmingham. .
Residencies and Special Projects with the Almira Quartet have included the Ryedale Festival, Birmingham and Midland Institute and the UK premiere of C. H. Parry's Third String Quartet, which was broadcast ‘as live’ from the Three Choirs Festival by Classic FM.

As well as having played with Mid-Wales Opera as section leaders, the Almira Quartet also took part in competitions in Italy and Germany as well as master-classes with Sigmund Nissel, Malcolm Layfield and the Chillingirian and Coull Quartets. As a founder member of the ASTARIASTRING QUARTET, I have taken part in masterclasses with Michael Bochmann and Gabor Takacs at the IMS in Prussia Cove.

I have performed at Festivals, for Music Societies and has also broadcast live for Classic FM (Almira Quartet) and BBC Radio 4 (Astaria Quartet). As a quartet player, as well as working for the Council for Music in Hospitals and Live Music Now! I have toured regularly including Scotland for Enterprise Music Scotland, the Argyll and Bute Concert Tours, Rural Tours and by invitation, for the National Federation of Music Societies Music Club circuit.

Through an interest in contemporary music, I have taken part in the UK premieres of quartet-commissions by Andrew Downes, Colin Touchin and Richard Lee-Harris and has worked with composers at the Birmingham Conservatoire through an Association with the Composition Faculty. I have also gave the UK premiere of ‘Imago’ for solo ‘cello by F. M. Beyer as part of a touring exhibition of the Blackboard Drawings by R. Steiner.

As a freelance musician, I have played for amongst others the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and Longborough Festival Opera.

Most recently I have performed in projects with Darkin Dance, most notably ‘Parabolic’ for the Brunel 200 Celebrations in Bristol and ‘Up Close’, a UK Tour for Dance South West. I am one of the founders and joint Artistic Directors of CHAMBER MUSIC @ WORCESTER an annual chamber music festival in Worcester. 

I play on a French 'cello by Collin-Mezin from 1902.


As a freelance 'cello teacher I have many years of teaching experience from teaching in both the state and private sector. I have also work for Music Services, involving individual and group tuition, at junior and senior levels. 

I try and use many of the pedagogical ideas of the ‘Kodaly System’, especially when teaching beginners, with its emphasis on singing,  musical games, rhythm and
 with the introduction of music-reading, fluency in the musical alphabet.

Other areas of my work in education have always included close involvement in the production of lecture-recitals and demonstration workshops, mostly with the Astaria String Quartet, the Foundation for Music in Hospitals or in the past, Live Music Now!

I have presented workshops and lecture-recitals for Arts Alive, Birmingham University, the City of Edinburgh Music School and the Education Department at Symphony Hall Birmingham, often to National Curriculum and National Lottery specifications. During the summer months, I have been a regular tutor on the 'Fantasia Music School' music course for many years.

I have also researched authentic performance-practice and contemporary (classical) music, through both commissions and subsequent performances. This has led to intensive collaboration with eminent composers as well as time spent coaching student composers, giving me valuable insight into the creative process of compositions and the interpretive and technical difficulties for the performer.

My own personal interest and inspiration has always been teaching, performing and coaching chambermusic, specifically the genre of string quartets.

As an experienced chamber musician, I have performed and coached the main works for string quartet, the chamber music for 'cello with flute, clarinet and piano as well as the solo repertoire for violoncello. I am also familiar with the orchestral repertoire, opera and theatre music, through extensive work as a freelance player.

Please view the CV attached for my professional referees.

Sean K. Gilde,
12 Jan 2012, 15:45