Ivo-Jan van der Werff has attained accolades as a chamber player, recitalist, guest artist and teacher throughout Europe and North America. As a member of the Medici String Quartet for 27 years, Mr. van der Werff has performed in nearly 2,000 concerts in major festivals and venues world wide, broadcasting regularly on radio and television. The Medici quartet made more than 40 recordings for EMI, Nimbus, Hyperion and Koch, and won many awards for works ranging from Haydn, Britten, Janacek, Schubert and the Beethoven cycle to more eclectic works of Saint-Saens, Wajahat Khan and Nigel Osborne. The quartet had collaborations with many artists across the musical, literary and theatrical spectrum including the Royal Shakespeare Company, George Martin, Alan Bennett, John Williams, John Thaw and Jack Brymer.
Mr. van der Werff has performed as recitalist in New York, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Sri Lanka, as well as numerous venues throughout the United Kingdom. His recordings for ASV and Koch include the sonata by Max Reger and the complete works for viola and piano/harp by Arnold Bax. Mr. van der Werff is frequently invited to perform with other quartets and chamber ensembles throughout the United Kingdom and Europe.
Before joining the Medici Quartet, Mr. van der Werff worked with many conductors, including Sir George Solti, Bernard Haitink and Klaus Tennstedt, and has since been invited to appear as guest principal viola and soloist with many of the United Kingdom’s leading orchestras.
Mr. van der Werff has been a professor of viola and chamber music at the Royal College of Music in London; he has also developed a private viola program near London and has taught at many international summer schools. He is a frequent adjudicator for competition juries.
His most recent project, inspired by his viola mentors--Margaret Major, Peter Shidlof and Bruno Giuranna--is a book entitled ‘Notebook for Viola Players’ which consists of a series of exercises and explanations on and about viola technique.
Mr. van der Werff plays on a viola by Giovanni Grancino, of Milan, c1690.