Biography

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Cellist, composer, performer, educator, media commentator, the increasingly un-categorisable Zoë Martlew performs and records around the world as soloist and with some of the world’s most renowned contemporary music ensembles, improvisation, film, electronica, multi-media, pop and rock artists, dance and theatre companies.

Her one woman show Revue Z has played at festivals in Aldeburgh, Bath, Plush, Denmark, Iceland, Spain and Wigmore Hall in London where she is a regular solo performer.  Recent commissions include ensemble pieces for BCMG, CoMA , Occupy the Pianos festival St John’s Smith Square, string trio “Völuspå” (playing at at Tanglewood Festival this summer), song cycle Musae for Lucy Schaefer and Huw Watkins for Cheltenham Festival 2019, and clarinet/electronics piece for Mark Simpson. Her amplified cello/soundtrack funk piece Shift Trip makes its US debut this spring as part of a new Franceschi ballet in New York and has just been released on NonClassical label performed by Cecilia Bignell. She is published by Schott.

Zoë was a judge on BBC TV’s Maestro and Young Musician of the Year; commentator for BBC Proms, appeared on Newsnight Review, is regular guest BBC Radio 3, has contributed articles for publications including the Guardian, Evening Standard, Classical Music Magazine, The Strad and was on the UK panel for the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest.

She is much in demand for educational activities including Artistic Director of the Saigon Chamber Music Festival in Vietnam, tutor for the National Youth Orchestra GB, Harstad Strings in Arctic Norway, Aldeburgh Music, is a regular jury member for international competitions including Royal Philharmonic Society awards and Young Musician of the Gulf in Bahrain.

She studied at the Royal College of Music, Clare College, Cambridge, the Royal Academy of Music and the Chopin Academy in Warsaw, is naturally blonde and draws the line at Country and Western.

“…sparks of electricity. Martlew drew from a deep well of expressive intensity…A shimmering performance…uncommon sensitivity.” THE STRAD

“the astonishing  Zoë Martlew (billed as ‘cellist/performer, a virtuoso show of understatement) in her spectacular Z Unleashed” ….the whole was so well prepared, given with such confidence, that this was an unforgettable experience.” Seen & Heard International

“Martlew set a pace that nearly set the floor on fire.”         INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY