British cellist Maxim Calver made his concerto debut in Symphony Hall, Birmingham as part of the Grand Final of BBC Young Musician 2018.


His performance of Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and BBC Four, was praised for its ‘natural ease’ and ‘emotional lyricism’. Earlier in the competition he won the Strings Category, performing works by Lutoslawski, Brahms and Stravinsky.

Highlights this season include performances of Shostakovich Cello Concerto No. 1 with Maidstone Symphony Orchestra and Young Musicians Symphony Orchestra, the latter at St. John Smith Square, London. He gives recitals across the UK at East Neuk Festival and Norwich Chapel, amongst others and participates in IMS Prussia Cove Masterclasses this summer.

Over the last year Maxim has given a performance of Brahms’ Double Concerto in Cadogan Hall, London and appeared as soloist with the Oprheus Sinfonia, Bath and Stockport Symphony Orchestras. Festival appearances include Southwold Arts Festival and the Wimbledon International Festival, where his performance of Delius’ cello sonata was singled out for its ‘depth of tone and passionate intensity’ (Planet Hugill, 2014).

Originally from Gorleston-on-Sea in Norfolk, Maxim studied with Maja Passchier before moving to the Yehudi Menuhin School to study with Thomas Carroll. He currently studies at the Royal College of Music with Professor Melissa Phelps, where he is the Hargreaves and Ball Trust Scholar supported by a Herbert Howells & Thomas Fielden Scholarship. Maxim is also a Hattori Foundation Junior Award recipient and has participated in masterclasses with leading cellists including Steven Isserlis, Heinrich Schiff, Julian Lloyd Webber, Paul Katz and Guy Johnston.

A committed chamber musician, Maxim has performed in many leading venues including Wigmore Hall and St. John’s Smith Square. He has also appeared at the Lewes Chamber Music Festival, Klosters Music Festival and the East Neuk Festival, where he will be returning in 2020. In 2018, Maxim toured the Netherlands as part of Trio Pantoum, which included a performance of Ravel’s Piano Trio broadcast live on Dutch radio from the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam.

Maxim is grateful to the Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) for their generous support in their aftercare scheme for BBC Young Musician finalists.

Maxim plays an Alberto Aloyisius Blanchi cello, dated 1906.

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Press reviews

The lasting impression from this performance was of a finely graded balance between the score’s Classical reserve and Romantic expression.

BBC Young Musician final, The Arts Desk, May 2018

[Maxim Calver] played with a depth of tone and passionate intensity which speaks for a remarkable career.

Yehudi Menuhin School at Wimbledon Festival, Planet Hugill, November 2014

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