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Susanne Beer and “The Cello Corner Foundation”


In December, the cellist Susanne Beer (1967-2019) passed away in London, due to cancer. Susanne, former cellist of the London Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO), at the end of her career, created the Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation, with the intention to bring young people of all ages closer to the cello, teaching by the Suzuki method, also supporting them in their didactic growth and in their first professional experiences.
Over sixty young cellists have been trained through her teaching at this school, many of them being of high artistic level. Now, while the Foundation is waiting to be legally established, the London Philharmonic Orchestra has made available a Virgin Giving page (virginmoneygiving.com/fund/LPO/SusanneBeer) in order to collect funds for the Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation. The Foundation is now managed by a group of friends, relatives and colleagues in LPO. Everyone’s effort is to preserve Susanne’s memory and spirit and to continue her support for young musicians in achieving excellence in performance.
Susanne Beer was born in Passau, Bavaria (Germany) in 1967, from a family of musicians. She began her cello studying at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, with Winfried Tachezi, consequently with Heidi Litschauer. Furthermore Susanne attended the courses by the Hochschule fuer Musik in Munich under Walter Nothas to end with a Master by the Hochschule fur Musik in Wurzburg, with Xenia Jankovic. Since 1993 Susanne has continued her studies in London with William Pleeth.
Consequently she has been offered the position at first cellist by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, a role she held for almost 20 years. This after her first performance, under Sir George Solti conducting, where she played the solo cello part in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, which was also subsequently released as a live CD. Before and during her years with the London Philharmonic Orchestra Susanne was invited a guest artist by the cello sections of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, of the Halle Orchestra of Manchester, of the Northern Symphony, of the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, of the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra.
In December, the cellist Susanne Beer (1967-2019) passed away in London, due to cancer. Susanne, former cellist of the London Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO), at the end of her career, created the Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation, with the intention to bring young people of all ages closer to the cello, teaching by the Suzuki method, also supporting them in their didactic growth and in their first professional experiences.
Over sixty young cellists have been trained through her teaching at this school, many of them being of high artistic level. Now, while the Foundation is waiting to be legally established, the London Philharmonic Orchestra has made available a Virgin Giving page (virginmoneygiving.com/fund/LPO/SusanneBeer) in order to collect funds for the Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation. The Foundation is now managed by a group of friends, relatives and colleagues in LPO. Everyone’s effort is to preserve Susanne’s memory and spirit and to continue her support for young musicians in achieving excellence in performance.
Susanne Beer was born in Passau, Bavaria (Germany) in 1967, from a family of musicians. She began her cello studying at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, with Winfried Tachezi, consequently with Heidi Litschauer. Furthermore Susanne attended the courses by the Hochschule fuer Musik in Munich under Walter Nothas to end with a Master by the Hochschule fur Musik in Wurzburg, with Xenia Jankovic. Since 1993 Susanne has continued her studies in London with William Pleeth.
Consequently she has been offered the position at first cellist by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, a role she held for almost 20 years. This after her first performance, under Sir George Solti conducting, where she played the solo cello part in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, which was also subsequently released as a live CD. Before and during her years with the London Philharmonic Orchestra Susanne was invited a guest artist by the cello sections of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, of the Halle Orchestra of Manchester, of the Northern Symphony, of the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, of the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra. Susanne was invited by Sir George Solti as a guest artist of the cello section of the “World Orchestra for Peace” orchestra which was later led by Valery Gergiev. She was also performing with other conductors, such as Sir Charles Mackerras, Vladimir Jurowski, Sir Andrew Davis, Louis Langree and Robin Ticciati. She played by the Wigmore Hall, as a member of the “London Philharmonic Orchestra Soloists” and of the “World Orchestra for Peace”. We also remember her participation in a trio ensemble composed with the flutist Gisela Mashayekhi and the pianist Mika Mori. Several solo recitals as, for example, by the Kaisersaal of the Munich Residence or in Glyndebourne.
For two years Susanne was the principal cellist of the ensemble “Ensemble Wien 2001”, that offered her the opportunity to work as a soloist with composers such as Hans Zender and Nader Mashayekhi. Before this experience she was the cellist of the ensemble Goldschmidt, exactly between 1993 and 1996, working closely with the composer Berthold Goldschmidt. He performed the world premiere of “Duo with Cordelia” for clarinet and cello in the Purcell Room, located in Queen Elizabeth Hall. Susanne has recorded chamber music for the BBC, EMI, Opera Rara, Chandos, London Philharmonic Label and Radio Milano.
Divine Art released her first solo album “Cello Diverse”, while Garat Records released her second solo album “Cinemacello”.
Susanne has also taught by the Guildhall School for Music and Drama, by the Royal Academy of Music and she held Master Classes in Spain, the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan.
In 2012 Susanne founded “The Cello Corner”, a cello’s teaching school, based on the Suzuki method, at Highbury & Islington, London. Since its establishment, the school has trained over 60 young cellists, many of whom are of a high standard. At the end of her life, she decided to create “The Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation”, with the intention to support young musicians in view of their professional careers.
Susanne played music for movies and worked with movies music composers such as A.R. Rahman (Slumdog Millionaire), Howard Shore (The Lord of the Rings) and Deborah Mollison (East is East), among others. His recording of ‘Gabriel’s Oboe’ inspired the Denmark Film Studios to shoot a music video.
The Cello Corner Foundation
The Cello Corner Foundation was founded in London in 2012 by Susanne Beer with the intention to promote the teaching of cello to young people. In addition to the school, Susanne created the “The Cello Corner website”, full of useful practical advices on learning the cello.
Susanne has worked, for many years, for the “Future First” student programme as the cello section’s tutor by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and has taught periodically by the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She held as well several training courses in Spain, United States, United Kingdom and Japan. By that time she realized that she needed to spend more time with her students to offer completely her support.
Since the beginning, therefore, Susanne has brought students closer to her courses, being able o create very talented musicians ready perform on stage with a great musical maturity, supported by an excellent technique and capable to win competitions and auditions. So, the convintion that the early training facilitates the process of learning, she felt this great desire: to feed young people with music, leaving them grow correctly from the beginning.
“There is nothing more rewarding than watching a young person develop in the right way from the very start and turn into a musician with the technique, the sound and the musical understanding which, once internalised by learning from the teacher, then develops into the student’s very own.” Susanne Beer
“My students inspire me and as much as they take from me they also give it back to me. That’s why I love my work as a teacher. I have learned so much over the last 30 years, performing all over the world and playing with world-class musicians, and it is very fulfilling to be able to pass all my experience on to my own students.” Susanne Beer
The Bank of Instruments also belongs to the Foundation, commissioned by Susanne and mainly belonging to her personal collection of cellos and strings, that very generously, are available to her students in order to facilitate their educational and professional development.
The Foundation is also available to receive funds and other instruments or bowes in order to increase the bank of the Instruments, even if only simply through loans. These donations are possible by contacting the Foundation directly (thecellocornerfoundation@gmail.com). Concerts are planned to collect donations for this purpose. The loaning of an instrument is authorized upon a student’s audition and can be extended for three years. Auditions are held in London yearly.
Susanne Beer’s discography
Susanne’s first solo album “Cello Diverse”, recorded with pianist Gareth Hancock, contains music by I. Stravinsky, J. Brahms and C. Debussy and a beautiful arrangement of Gabriel’s Oboe by Ennio Morricone. For each purchased copy by the Divine Art Records web shop (CD or digital) during 2020, Divine Art Records will make a donation to The Susanne Beer Cello Corner Foundation.
The second solo album Cinemacello is a selection from popular opera arias and melodies for cello and piano. Gareth Hancock, who arranged the music, also plays the piano in this recording.
London Philharmonic Orchestra concerts in memory of Susanne Beer
The London Philharmonic Orchestra dedicated a concert to Susanne Beer on 11th March 2020: Anne-Sophie Mutter (violin), Khatia Buniatishvili (piano) and Pablo Ferrández (cello), with Robin Ticciati conducting, performed by the Royal Festival Hall, in Southbank Center, the Beethoven’s Triple Concert and the Mahler’s Symphony n. 1.
The Foundation’s second fundraising concert took place on Saturday 13th June, at 6:30 p.m. by Christ Church Highbury.
The Greenwich Trio and Sena Larard (soprano) performed a program dedicated to L. V. Beethoven (Piano Trio op 70 n. 2) and to J. Brahms (Piano Trio n. 3). In the second part of the concert H. Villa Lobos and The Bachianas Brasileiras n. 5 with the Young Cello Ensemble conducted by Aganieszka Mika.