Mats is committed to training the next generation of cellists
He has been a Professor of Cello at the Royal Academy of Music since 1993, where he was appointed the Leo Stern Fellow in 2019.
He has given masterclasses at conservatories around the world and is the founder of the annual summer course for cellists, ‘EXPANSION’ in his native Sweden. He coaches the London Schools Symphony Orchestra and at the National Centre for Music Talent in Sweden. His company cellolid.com publishes, besides his original compositions and transcriptions, the pedagogical works for cello The Essential Warm-up Routine for Cellists, The Beauty of Scales (which consists of all the standard scales, but also pizzicato and artificial harmonic scales, blues and whole tone scales, scales of 2nds, 4ths, 5ths, 7ths, 9th and 10ths), the etude compilation Heritage, and a book with orchestral excerpts. Other transcriptions appear on the Schott, International Music Company and Gehrman editions.
Mats studied with Maja Vogl at the Gothenburg Conservatoire for six years before continuing with Leonard Rose and Channing Robbins for four years at the Juilliard School of Performing Arts. He has had private tuition with Pierre Fournier, Janos Starker, William Pleeth and Lynn Harrell. The method of Mats’ teaching is best described through the motto of his summer course: ‘imagination promises musical expression, but a solid technique delivers it’. During lessons, emphasis is put on both. Imagination, individuality and expression are embraced, while the freedom by the instrument is based on work. ‘Our hands are the outward expression of what we feel inside’ (W Pleeth).
He has appeared with some of the leading orchestras and performed in many major halls as a recitalist and chamber musician. His recent compositions include Sappho in Manchester for string quartet and orchestra as well as Rigoletto Fantasy for cello and orchestra, the latter recorded with the Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy for the BIS label. Mats is currently Principal cellist with the Oxford Philharmonic & Soloists. As principal cellist he has worked with many of the world’s leading orchestras, including The Philharmonia, Royal Concertgebouw, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, and the Los Angeles- and Oslo Philharmonic orchestras.
Mats plays the 1857 Joseph Antonius Rocca ‘Grützmacher’ cello, the instrument used for the premiere of Richard Strauss’ Don Quixote in 1898.