Paul Silverthorne has been Principal Viola of the London Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and Principal Viola of the London Sinfonietta since 1988, while continuing to pursue a busy solo career. He has performed with such conductors as Sir Colin Davis, André Previn, Sir Simon Rattle, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Christopher Hogwood, Oliver Knussen, John Adams and Kent Nagano, with the LSO and other major orchestras in the UK, USA and Europe. After a performance at the Proms, The Times (London) described him as “a virtuoso in sensitivity and technique.”
His solo performances regularly take him to the Far East, Australia and Russia as well as closer to home in the UK and Europe. He is also much in demand as a teacher in master classes around the world.He has been a regular visitor to the US since his New York debut at Lincoln Center in 1996, performing at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and with orchestras around the country.
Silverthorne is particularly renowned for his interpretation of new music and his commitment to this field has led to close relationships with leading composers of our time, many of whom have been inspired to write for him. He has worked closely with Elliot Carter, Steve Reich and John Adams and many major European composers including Pierre Boulez, Luciano Berio, Hans Werner Henze, Helmut Lachenmann and George Benjamin. Silverthorne has been a champion of American music from Morton Feldman through Henri Lazarof, Richard Wilson and Tod Machover. He premiered Kenneth Fuchs’ concerto Divinum Mysterium and recorded it on Naxos American Classics.
Silverthorne’s recordings cover a wide range of repertoire and appear on EMI, Naxos, Chandos, Koch International Classics, ASV, Meridian, Albany and other labels to widespread acclaim. His recent CD, Beethoven by Arrangement with pianist David Owen Norris, a collection of works arranged for viola and piano was issued on the Toccata Classics label and widely praised.
Silverthorne is a professor at the Royal Academy of Music, to whom he is indebted for the loan, from their collection, of the Amati viola of 1620 on which he plays.