Louise Williams - Viola
Louise Williams - Viola
Louise Williams has been a member of several prestigious chamber groups,and has played as a guest with many more. The string quartet dominated the first part of her career, but since having children she has free-lanced and played with groups that spend less of the year touring abroad.

She began her musical life as a violinist, gaining a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music to study with Manoug Parikian. After winning many prizes both for violin and quartet, including the final Recital Diploma prize, she moved on to the Juilliard School in New York where she studied with Ivan Galamian.

On her return, Louise was sponsored by the Countess of Munster Trust on their recital scheme, and played Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante with Roger Chase and the English Chamber Orchestra at their 25th Anniversary concert. She also became a founder member of the Endellion Quartet, as second violinist, which had an immediate success at the Portsmouth International String Quartet Competition (now the London International String Quartet Competition) and later at the Young Concert Artists' Competition in New York.

However, after five years she left both the quartet and the music world in search of a different lifestyle, spending a year studying organic gardening and time in India practising meditation.

Shortly after returning to the fray, she was invited to join the Chilingirian Quartet as their violist. This was a very happy and busy time, with many concerts and recordings and the fulfillment of having played 3 different parts in many pieces, after having given many concerts as first violin of her student quartet.

Having three children in quick succession put paid to a touring career, however, and since that time Louise has not gone back to full-time musical work as she was fortunately able to make the choice to be at home some of the time.

The following years included playing quintets as a guest with other quartets, (Sorrel, Coull, Vanbrugh, Endellion), deputizing in quartets in cases of illness (Takacs, Lindsays) and playing as a guest with the Nash Ensemble for many years. Louise was also a member of the Raphael Ensemble, and had a trio with clarinet and piano in which she played both violin and viola. After deputizing in the Lindsays, including jumping into a Beethoven Cycle, she was invited to become their regular quintet and sextet partner and enjoyed many concerts and recordings with them until their retirement.

Since 2001 she has been a member of the Frith Piano Quartet with Benjamin Frith, Robert Heard and Richard Jenkinson, and Arp├Ęge, a group with flute, harp, horn and viola.

She has also played as guest principal with Britten Sinfonia, guest principal viola with the Philharmonia and as a member of Andras Schiff's orchestra, Capella Andrea Barca.

Festivals include regular attendance at IMS Prussia Cove, Kuhmo Festival in Finland, and the Gould Trio's Festival in Corbridge.

In 2010 - 11, Louise played a cycle of the 10 Beethoven sonatas for violin and piano with Kathron Sturrock, and in 2011-12, recorded 2 CDs of British viola music form the 1st half of the 20th century, which were released in October 2012 as a double CD on the EM (English Music) label.
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