Laura van der Heijden

Laura van der Heijden

“The beauty of Laura van der Heijden’s playing lies in the fact that she has a wonderful expressivity, but never, ever overdoes it.”

Jane Shuttleworth, Bachtrack

Representation: General Management

Photo: Sam Trench


Laura van der Heijden rose to fame when she won the title of BBC Young Musician in 2012. She has since embarked on an impressive career which this season includes debuts in Germany, New Zealand and Australia. Her artistic integrity and captivating stage presence are rapidly ensuring her a place among the most distinctive emerging artists.  Currently Young Artist in Residence of the London Mozart Players, she has performed with the Philharmonia, the Royal Philharmonic, English Chamber and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras. Laura is a keen chamber musician, collaborating regularly with pianists Tom Poster and Huw Watkins, and violinist Tobias Feldmann.


Full Biography

Laura van der Heijden has already made a name for herself as a very special emerging talent. At the age of 15, Laura was awarded the title of BBC Young Musician 2012, performing Walton’s Cello Concerto with Kirill Karabits and the Northern Sinfonia at The Sage, Gateshead. In September 2014 Laura was awarded the Landgraf von Hessen Prize at the Kronberg Academy’s prestigious international masterclasses. In 2015, Laura was named Young Artist in Residence of the London Mozart Players.

Born in England in 1997 as the youngest daughter of a Dutch father and a Swiss mother, Laura’s musical studies started on recorder at the age of four. After learning with Marina Logie on cello, Laura had gained ABRSM grade 8 distinctions on both cello and piano by the age of ten. Laura’s first public performance as a cellist was at the age of nine with the Jupiter Chamber Orchestra. From 2005 to 2014 Laura was a student at the Royal College of Music Junior Department, where she learned piano with Emily Jeffrey and participated in many ensembles. Since 2008 Laura has been a student of the renowned British-Russian cellist Leonid Gorokhov.

During her young life Laura has already had many other prizes and awards bestowed on her. In 2010 she won “First Prize with Distinction” and a special prize in the final of the Swiss National Youth Music Competition, which led to her performing the Boccherini Cello Concerto in G with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra at Zurich Tonhalle. She was also the 2011 winner of the Marjorie Humby competition at the Royal College of Music, the 2011 Beckenham Musician of the Year and 2012 Woking Young Musician of the Year. She was awarded the Director’s Prize (2012) and the Esther Coleman Prize (2014) for outstanding contributions to the RCM Junior Department.

In recent years Laura has performed with the Philharmonia Orchestra in Beethoven’s Triple Concerto and with Sinfonia Cymru in Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto. She also gave performances with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the European Union Chamber Orchestra and the London Mozart Players as part of her residency.

Last season Laura made her debuts in Germany at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival, in New Zealand with the National Youth Orchestra under Christopher Adey, and in Australia with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in the opening concert of the inaugural BBC Proms Australia, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis.

She also performed again with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and undertook extensive recital tours in the UK.  She has worked with a number of pianists including Tom Poster, Alison Rhind and Petr Limonov. Her chamber music performances included collaborations with Krzysztof Chorzelski, Tobias Feldmann, Martyn Jackson, Savitri Grier.

Laura was chosen by the Orpheum Stiftung in Switzerland, a foundation encouraging and assisting exceptionally talented young instrumental soloists. Under this umbrella she appeared in recital with Fazil Say at Zürich Tonhalle in September 2016.

Laura is currently studying for her Bachelor’s Degree in Music at St John’s College, Cambridge, though she continues to perform during her term breaks. This season sees her debuts with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, as well as performances with the Orchestra of the Swan as their Associate Artist.

Laura plays a 1780 cello by Joseph Hill, loaned to her by the Boileau family, and is an Ambassador for both the Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts and Brighton Youth Orchestra.


Artist Website:

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Anna Edwards



Laura van der Heijden to perform at Cambridge University

April 11th, 2017

Young cellist collaborates with Endellion String Quartet

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Laura van der Heijden at Saffron Hall

March 14th, 2017

Laura van der Heijden & Tom Poster in Recital

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Laura van der Heijden at BBC Proms Australia

March 14th, 2016

Laura will perform Saint-Saëns at the inaugural music festival in Melbourne.

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Laura van der Heijden performs with the RPO

November 5th, 2015

Cellist to perform Tchaikovsky programme in London and Cambridge

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Laura van der Heijden named Young Artist in Residence of the London Mozart Players

April 28th, 2015

Cellist Laura van der Heijden, the BBC Young Musician of 2012, becomes the London Mozart Players’ first ever Young Artist in Residence.

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Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No. 1 (Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Sir Andrew Davis – BBC Proms Australia

“At just 19, this tremendously charismatic performer displayed a confidence and artistry far greater than her years, delivering a rich, treacly tone warmed with a robust vibrato. This relatively short, single-movement work is not often considered among the greatest cello concerti, but in the hands of musicians of this calibre, it is most definitely worthy of a performance.”

Limelight Magazine (April 2016)

“The Saint-Saens often suffers maltreatment, cellists slashing through tempests, then saturating delicate asides with ostentatious phrasing. Van der Heijden was having none of that, the beauty and clarity of her tone, even and sensitively weighted bow contact, and an unlaboured expressive palette making for an elegant performance. She gave fiendish double stops, harmonics and upper-register climbs the rare honour of being treated as musical ideas rather than tricks, making sense of what is generally rendered as acoustic porridge.”

The Australian (April 2016)

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Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto No. 1 (New Zealand Symphony Orchestra NYO and Richard Gill) 

“Her warm tone in the upper register and the rich dark velvety hues of the lower provided a performance full of colour and nuances of a more mature performer… van der Heijden displayed her virtuosity in the second movement cadenza and in the dramatic sections of the finale. Her performance captured the beauty inherent in the work.”

Stuff NZ (February 2016)

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Recital with Tom Poster, Nairn

“This was a musical evening to remember.  The rapport and musical communication between these two now internationally renowned performers was remarkable, particularly considering the youthfulness of the cellist who exhibited a musical maturity well beyond her years.”

John Bell (October 2015)

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Artist Manager

Sibylle Jackson (Cambridge)

Assistant Artist Manager

Anna Edwards (Cambridge)
01223 706032