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Image courtesy: David Cohen

London Symphony Announces New Principal Cellist

Belgian cellist David Cohen will officially assume the role as of the orchestra’s 2022 season 


“We are so happy to welcome our new Principal Cello to the LSO family!” wrote the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) in a statement.

Hailing from a family of musicians, David Cohen made his solo debut with the Belgium National Orchestra at the age of nine. 

His solo engagements have included the Saint-Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, London Soloists Chamber Orchestra, l’Orchestre Philharmonique de Liege, l’Orchestre de la Beethoven Akademie, Seoul Philharmonic, and BBC Concert Orchestra among others.

He recently performed as principal cello with the LSO before officially taking on the role next year.



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Cohen previously held positions as principal cello of the Philharmonia Orchestra, artistic director of the Melchoir Ensemble, plus as founder and artistic director of the Les Sons Intensifs chamber music festival.

A graduate of the Yehudi Menuhin School and Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Cohen won over 25 prizes in many international contests including the Geneva International Cello Competition and J.S.Bach International Competition. 

In 2002, he was nominated a "Rising Star" by the European Concert Hall Organization (ECHO) with Belgium’s Royal Philharmonic Society and the Concertgebouw. He performed a world tour in venues including Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Vienna Musikverein, Paris Theatre des Champs Elysees, Cologne Philharmonie, and Bruxelles Palais des Beaux Arts.

Cohen’s mentors included Wiliam Pleeth, Melissa Pheleps, Lynn Harrel, Daniil Schafran, Nathalia Gutman, Gary Hofman, Bernard Greenhouse, Steven Isserlis, Boris Pergamenschikow, Yehudi Menuhin, Mstislav Rostropovich, and Oleg Kogan.

Under the Forlane, Classic FM, Cypres-Records, and LPO record labels, Cohen has made award-winning recordings playing the cello concertos of Lutosławski and Gubaidulina with the Philharmonia Orchestra and BBC Symphony.

Since 1998, Cohen taught masterclasses internationally and currently holds a faculty position at Belgium’s Conservatoire Royal de Musique de Mons and London’s Trinity Laban.

Cohen plays on the “Ex-Pergamenschikow” cello made by Dominicus Montagnana c.1735 — generously provided by Pat Morton and the Razumovsky Trust.

LSO’s welcome Q&A with Cohen can be found here.



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