Valerie Welbanks

Canadian-born Val Welbanks leads a busy chamber music career in London as the cellist of both the Marsyas Trio and Ligeti Quartet, with whom she has been playing for nearly fourteen years. With both groups, Val has accrued experience globally and built a reputation for thoughtful performances of contemporary music.

The Ligeti Quartet has held residencies at the universities of Cambridge, Sheffield and Goldsmiths University of London, as well as Nottingham High School. This year they are showcasing all of György Ligeti's string music for the centenary of his birth, and they are touring music by Anna Meredith to promote their latest CD. The Quartet has recorded for the Nonclassical and Mercury KX labels.

The Marsyas Trio is one of the rare flute-cello-piano ensembles - their repertoire ranges from the early Classical to the contemporary. With eighteen funding awards to their name, the Trio has been heading collaborative projects the most recent of which involves many new works by Michael Finnissy and a children’s radio play by Robin Haigh, narrated by Janey Godley and Ed Balls.

Val also regularly plays with the London Contemporary Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra of London to record scores for film and television, and has recorded several discs with the Longbow Ensemble and GPlus Ensemble.

In 2016, Val completed her PhD thesis Foundations of Modern Cello Technique, codifying extended techniques for cello (Goldsmiths, University of London) under the supervision of composer Roger Redgate, and previously the late cellist Alexander Ivashkin. Her thesis has presently over 14,000 downloads, and is being used by composition teachers and students, as well as cellists interested in contemporary music, around the world.