Toronto Cello School
Toronto Cello School - Oleg Volkov Toronto Cello School was founded by well-known Russian cellist Oleg Volkov to provide the highest standards of string instruments playing for students of all ages.

In Toronto Cello School you can learn to play cello at the highest level. We also teach violin and viola; give piano lessons for beginners and music theory lessons and provide our students with excellent performance opportunities.

Contact us today for further details about Toronto Cello School and to book your FIRST FREE LESSON:
CALL NOW: 416-951-5417

Friday, November 5, 2010

Famous Cellists: Joseph Johnson

One of the most exciting solo artists of his generation, JOSEPH JOHNSON is currently the principal cellist of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and principal cellist-designate of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, a post he takes up at the start of the 2010-2011 season. He continues as principal cellist of the Santa Fe Opera, and, during the 2008-2009 season, served as guest principal cellist of the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra.
... Highlights of Joseph Johnson’s current season include six performances of Brahms’s Double Concerto with violinist Frank Almond and Edo de Waart conducting the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra...

... Prior to his Milwaukee appointment, Joseph Johnson was a member of The Minnesota Orchestra cello section for eleven years...

... Mr. Johnson has a special relationship with the culture and people of Russia, dating to his 1997 tour as soloist with the American Russian Youth Orchestra, during which he played Barber’s Cello Concerto in New York City’s Carnegie Hall, St. Petersburg’s Marinsky Theatre and Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Hall. He returned to Russia frequently, leading master classes at the Tchaikovsky School of Music and performing in recital...


Upcoming performance

Toronto Symphony Orchestra, McGegan / Johnson / Saint-Saëns, Beethoven

Roy Thomson Hall
Toronto, Ontario
Wednesday, 24 November 2010 - 6:30 PM

Presenter: Toronto Symphony Orchestra
Ensemble: Toronto Symphony Orchestra
Conductor: Nicholas McGegan
Artist: Joseph Johnson (Cello)

Saint-Saëns: Concerto for Cello no 1 in A minor, Op. 33
Beethoven: Symphony no 8 in F major, Op. 93

Monday, November 1, 2010

Fun with Cello - Gartxot Ortiz in Ara Malikian's PAGAGNINI

Pagagnini in "Le plus grand cabaret du Monde" (TVFrance 2)

Gartxot Ortiz - Cello

Gartxot was born in Pamplona and began playing the cello as a youngster at the age of 9. Besides his musical career, he reigns in the kitchen of his own restaurant, in his hometown.

He toured around Spain for a while in a chamber-music group, until he left behind band and restaurant to start a new phase in Madrid.

He's dedicated himself to teaching music to children in various schools and working as a musician in the Compañía Nacional de Teatro Clásico (The National Classical Theater Company).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Norman Reintamm and Friends Recital

Alex Volkov (violin) and Oleg Volkov (cello) will perform works by Beethoven and Mozart with the Cathedral Bluffs Symphony Orchestra.
4 PM Sunday, October 17, 2010
St. Timothy's Anglican Church, Agincourt

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Famous Cellists: Alexandre Knyazev

Alexander Kniazev was born in Moscow in 1961. He began his cello studies at the age of six with Alexander Fedorchenko and graduated from the Moscow Conservatory in 1986. He then went on to study with the renowned organist Galina Kozlova and graduated from Nizhny-Novgorod Conservatory as an organist in 1991.

Alexander Kniazev is a laureate of the National Cello Competition in Vilnius (1977), the International Cello Competition in Cassado (1979), the Chamber Music Competition in Trapani (1987) with the pianist Ekaterina Voskressenskaya, the International Tchaïkovsky Competition in Moscow (1990) and the UNISA Competition in Pretoria (1992).

He has appeared with such distinguished conductors as Evgeny Svetlanov, Yuri Temirkanov, Mstislav Rostropovitch, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Yuri Bashmet, Maxim Shostakovitch and Neemi Jarvi.

His chamber music partners include Vadim Repin, Nikolai Lugansky, Viktor Tretyakov, Boris Berezovsky, Dmitry Makhtin, Brigitte Engerer, Laurent Korcia, Augustin Dumay and Maria-Joao Pires.

As well as performing, he teaches at the Moscow Conservatory and regularly gives master classes in Europe and Asia.


Tchaikovsky. op.19 , N4. Nocturne
Alexandre Knyazev and Boris Berezovsky

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Sinfonia Toronto closes season with last-minute cello sensation

By L.H. Tiffany Hsieh
Monday, June 7, 2010

Canadian cellist Shauna Rolston isn't easily replaceable. But when Soo Bae, another Canadian cellist, took her place at Toronto's Glenn Gould Studio on May 14, the only cellist that mattered was the one featured on centre stage.

Rolston was to give the world premiere of Canadian composer Heather Schmidt's Cello Concerto and perform Tchaikovsky's Nocturne for Cello and Strings. However, she couldn't make it last minute due to personal reasons.

In a revised program of Sinfonia Toronto's final concert of the season, Bae, 33, charmed the audience with loads of wits and personality...

Read the complete story here

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Where To Buy Cello In Toronto?

Remenyi House of Music

Cases, rosin, strings, other accessories, service, repairs and rentals: call 416-961-3111 or visit the downtown Toronto location:
210 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M5S 1T8
or Richmond Hill store:
1455 16th Avenue Unit 6, Richmond Hill, ON L4B 4W5

Monday, May 10, 2010

Cellos by Hratch and Artak Armenious : Toronto Luthiers

Toronto Cello School recommends
Hratch and Artak Armenious
Master Violin, Viola and Cello Makers for over 35 years, working in the best Cremonese traditions. The Armenious workshop and store is located in Toronto where Hratch and Artak make, repair and restore instruments and repair and rehair bows.
Armenious Violins
903 Willowdale Ave.
Toronto, Ontario
M2M 3C2 Canada
Tel. 416-221-8826
Closest major intersection is Yonge and Finch Streets

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Canadian Cellists: Julian Armour

Julian Armour is principal cellist of the Thirteen Strings Chamber Orchestra and is Artistic and Executive Director of the highly successful Ottawa Chamber Music Society.

Excerpts from bio:
...born Missoula, MT, of Canadian parents, 29 Sep 1960... Shortly after birth, moved to Canada... a graduate of McGill University where he was a student of the distinguished Canadian cellist Walter Joachim...

...established the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival in 1993...
...under his directorship, the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival has grown to become the world's largest chamber music festival...

...was principal cellist of the Montreal Chamber Orchestra (1982-86) and conducted the Purcell Chamber Orchestra (1984-85)...

...heard regularly on CBC radio, both as a soloist and as a chamber musician...

The recipient of numerous awards:
  • The Community Foundation's Investing in People Award
  • The Victor Tolgesy Arts Award by the Council for the Arts in Ottawa
  • Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Government of France)
  • The Meritorious Service Medal by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada
  • Named one of Ottawa's Top 50 Movers and Shakers (Ottawa Life Magazine)
  • Canada's Meritorious Service Medal
  • The Ottawa Sun's Arts Newsmaker of the Year

The Thirteen Strings:
The Canadian Encyclopaedia:
Chamber Players Canada:

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Cello Rock :: Apocalyptica

Recommended Reading

Cello rock

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cello rock and cello metal are subgenres of rock music and heavy metal characterized by the use of cellos (as well as other bowed string instruments such as the violin and viola) as primary instruments, alongside or in place of more traditional rock instruments such as electric guitars, electric bass guitar, and drum set.

Cellos, often in groups of three or more, are used to create a sound, rhythm, and texture similar to that of familiar rock music, but distinctly reshaped by the unique timbres and more traditional genres of the cello (in particular) and other string instruments used. The cellos and other stringed instruments are often amplified and/or modified electronically, and often played in a manner imitative of the sound of electric guitars. They are often combined with other elements typical of rock music such as rock-style vocals and drumming.

Current prominent bands include: Rasputina, Apocalyptica, Primitivity, Judgement Day, A Collective of Dirt, Aaron Minsky, Hyperion and Break of Reality.
Cello RockApocalyptica is a Finnish symphonic metal band from Helsinki, Finland, formed in 1993. The band is composed of classically trained cellists and, since 2003, a drummer. Three of the cellists are graduates of the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. Their music features elements from classical music and neo-classical metal, to symphonic metal and thrash metal. They have sold over three million albums to date.

Apocalyptica was formed in 1993[1] when four cellists, Eicca Toppinen, Paavo Lötjönen, Max Lilja, and Antero Manninen gathered to play Metallica covers at Sibelius Academy. In 1996, Apocalyptica released their debut studio album, Plays Metallica by Four Cellos, which consisted solely of Metallica covers played on cellos. In 1998, Apocalyptica released their second studio album, Inquisition Symphony, which was produced by Hiili Hiilesmaa. Inquisition Symphony once again contained covers of Metallica, but also contained covers of Faith No More, Sepultura, and Pantera. For this album the band also decided to include three original songs written by Eicca Toppinen.

Read the full article here:

Listen and watch on YouTube:
Hall of The Mountain King
From 'Apocalyptica: The Life Burns Tour DVD'

Do not forget to listen to the original sound, clean from metallic noise:
Edvard Grieg's "In the Hall of the Mountain King" performed at the Musikfestspiele Potsdam Sanssouci by the Deutsches Filmorchester Babelsberg under the direction of Scott Lawton.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

History of Cello in Canada

Recommended Reading:

The Canadian Encyclopedia
Encyclopedia of Music in Canada
Cello. The bass of the violin family ('basso di violino') was made in the early 1600s, but it was not until the 18th century that it was recognized as a potential solo instrument, ideal string quartet bass, and orchestral instrument. By the late 18th century, the growing popularity of string quartets and quintets by composers such as Boccherini, Haydn, Mozart, and Pleyel created a demand for cellists. George Gibsone, Narcisse Hamel, J. Harvicker, and Adam Schott were worthy cellists active in Canada from the late 18th to the mid-19th centuries. Two professionally trained French cellists arrived in Canada mid-century - Antoine Dessane in 1848 in Quebec City and Paul Letondal in 1852 in Montreal. At a recital in 1854 Letondal performed works by the cello virtuoso Auguste Franchomme, as well as a fantasy of his own composition.

Read the complete article here:

Friday, April 2, 2010

Free sheet music for Cello @ IMSLP

List of Compositions Featuring the Cello

This is a list of public domain compositions that feature the cello and that have been uploaded to IMSLP. These include cello solo works, cello sonatas, cello concertos, transcriptions and even chamber music pieces that feature the cello.

Michelle Kyle - Cello, Toronto

Recommended reading:

The autobiography of cellist Michelle Kyle

...a visiting music teacher asked us all to demonstrate separating our second and third fingers while keeping our first and second, and our third and fourth, together...

...I began playing cello in the orchestra of the local high school before I was old enough to attend that school...

...In my first year at Brandon, I excelled. I won full tuition scholarships, additional string performance scholarships and academic scholarships, and I won the local music competitions...

...I had the rare musicality needed to be a soloist, but didn't know how to focus my practicing to develop my technique...

...After one year of Gisela's teaching approach..... I changed my major to piano...

...Ironically, when I was working on my own with no cello teacher, I won the Edward Johnson Music Competition as a cello soloist...

...I moved to Toronto to study law at Osgoode Hall...

...I auditioned to play cello in the Toronto subway, and won a licence to play that helped me pay my law school tuition. I played in the subway for a few years while I was in law school, and I still meet people who remember hearing me play there!..

...My string trio plays music by Ennio Morricone, Journey, U2, Aerosmith, Coldplay...

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Fool's Cello

Here is a short collection of cello jokes for the April 1st, 2010.
Jokes borrowed and slightly adapted from
Pictures - from

Did you hear about the cellist who bragged that he could play 32nd notes? The rest of the orchestra didn't believe him, so he proved it by playing one.

A violinist noticed at the end of each rehearsal break, one of the cellists would look at the inside flap of his jacket before he sat down to resume rehearsal. This continued for several decades, and the violinist became quite curious about it.

One day, during hot weather, the cellist took off his jacket and went off on break. The violinist waited until everyone was off the platform, looked around, and sneaked over to the jacket. He pulled back the flap and saw a little note pinned on the inside......
It read: "Cello left hand, bow right."

Q: Why can't you hear a cello on a digital recording?
A: Recording technology has reached such an advanced level of development that all extraneous noise is eliminated.

A group of terrorists hijacked a plane full of cellists.
They called down to ground control with their list of demands and added that if their demands weren't met, they would release one cellist every hour.

Q: What's the difference between the first and last desk of a cello section?
A: A semi-tone.

A noted comic was recently flying to Toronto. He decided to strike up a conversation with his seat mate.
"I've got a great cellist joke. Would you like to hear it?"
"I should let you know first that I am a cellist".
"That's OK. I'll tell it real slow!"

Q: Why do so many people take an instant dislike to the cello?
A: It saves time.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

NYCO Music Festival

Toronto Cello School recommends:
NYCO Music Festival

"We are honoured to present Larysa Kuzmenko as our Senior Festival Composer. Ms. Kuzmenko, a renowned composer, whose compositions are performed all over the world by the most distinguished performers, has agreed not only to become our featured composer, but also write some pieces especially for the festival."

The following selections may be obtained by contacting the composer at
Late Intermediate Cello:
Tarantella or Entre Amis

Advanced Cello:
Any one movement from “Fantasy” (unaccompanied) or
Any one movement from “A Dream Within a Dream

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Song of the Cello - Mischa Maisky

Recommended Recording:
Song of the Cello

J.S. Bach · Brahms · Boccherini · Choi Dvorák · Elgar · Fauré · Kiesewetter · Mendelssohn · Poulenc · Prokofiev Rachmaninov · Ravel · Saint-Saëns · Schubert · Schumann · Shostakovich · R. Strauss · Tchaikovsky
Tiempo · Hovora · Argerich · Kremer · Mehta · Bernstein · Sinopoli · Tilson Thomas a.o.
CD |D|D|D| 000289 477 7442 6 |G|M 2| 2 Compact Discs Portrait of the Artist
You can purchase the entire CD set of selected tracks from the Deutsche Grammophon website:

Additional information:

Saturday, March 27, 2010

M.Rostropovich - Schumann Concerto in A minor

Recommended Listening:

Robert Schumann - Cello Concerto, Op.129
Mstislav Rostropovich, cello
Orchestre National de France, Leonard Bernstein
October 1976

The concerto is considered one of his more daring and adventurous works, due to the length of the exposition and the transcendental quality of the opening. On the autographed score, Schumann gave the title Konzertstück (concert piece) rather than Konzert (concerto), which suggested he intended to depart from the traditional conventions of a concerto from the very beginning.

Like Schumann's other concertos, the first movement of the cello concerto begins with a very short orchestral introduction followed by the solo introduction, which in turn is followed by a short tutti that leads into a lyrical melody.

The second movement is a very short lyrical movement in which the soloist occasionally uses double stops. It also features a descending fifth, a gesture used throughout the piece as a signal and homage to his wife, Clara Schumann.

The third movement is a lively rondo which contrasts with the first two movements. At the end of the movement, there is an accompanied in-tempo cadenza, something unprecedented in Schumann's day, that leads into the final coda. In recent years, some cellists have chosen instead to include their own unaccompanied cadenza at this point, although there is no indication that Schumann wished for one.

Schumann famously abhorred receiving applause between movements. As a result, there are no breaks between any of the movements in the concerto.
Read the complete article on Wikipedia

Additional information:

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

10 Days Of Summer Music Fun!


8 July — 18 July, 2010

Summer Music Camp for Strings, Piano and Voice
Preparatory, Intermediate and Advanced Studies

For details, please visit:

Thursday, February 18, 2010

95% at RCM Grade 10 Violin !

Alex Volkov received 95% at RCM Grade 10 Violin Examination. Congratulations!

Alex learns violin with Jacob Lakirovich

Sunday, January 31, 2010

All Gold at Arts Richmond Hill Festival!

Alexander Volkov: 3 first places - in Age Achievement, Grade 10 List D and Grade 10 Sonata.

Alik Volkov won in the Open Class and in Grade 4 List A.

Both Alex and Alik took part in the Gala Concerto on January 31, 2010 in the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts.