violoncello and viola da gamba
Originally from the United Kingdom, Robert Smith studied the viola da gamba with Mienke van der Velden (Amsterdam) and Paolo Pandolfo (Basel) and the baroque cello with Wouter Möller, Jaap ter Linden and Viola da Hoog.
In 2012 he won the first prize, the prize, the audience prize and the special prize of the Bach Abel viola da gamba competition in Köthen, Germany.
He was the first cellist of the European Union Baroque Orchestra in 2005/2006. He plays in many orchestras such as the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra. He is a founding member of the Fantasticus ensemble, whose recordings have received excellent reviews from the specialized press. In 2010 he won the 2nd prize at the Brunnenthal Soloist Competition in Austria. He has also received other prizes, including those from the Musiqua Antiqua competition in Bruges and the International Van Wassenaer Competition in Utrecht.
As a solo player Robert has had live concerts broadcast by BBC Radio 3, Deutschlandfunk Kultur and worked as a soloist for the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In 2017 Robert released one of the first ever recordings of Telemann’s newly discovered Fantasias for solo viola da gamba, which The Observer reviewed as “playing of exceptional quality”.
His playing is described as extremely intense and highly dramatic. Robert Smith is one of the most sought-after baroque and violist cellists of his generation.