“It is easy to hear what the fuss is about, he plays like a God” (New York Stereo Review).
During forty years of a distinguished international career, Robert Cohen has been hailed as one of the foremost cellists of our time.
He has been invited to perform concertos world-wide by conductors Claudio Abbado, Antal Dorati, Sir Mark Elder, Mariss Jansons, Sir Charles Mackerras, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Kurt Masur, Riccardo Muti, Sir Roger Norrington, Tadaaki Otaka, Sir Simon Rattle, Stanisław Skrowaczewski, Michael Tilson-Thomas and Osmo Vanska. Cohen's chamber music collaborations include concerts with Sir Yehudi Menuhin, the Amadeus String Quartet, Menahem Pressler, Leonidas Kavakos, Krystian Zimerman, the Belcea Quartet, Patrick Messina and pianist Heini Karkkainen.
His musical education included studies with William Pleeth, followed by Jacqueline du Pré, André Navarra and Mistislav Rostropovich. Robert won the Suggia Prize, Young Concert Artists (New York), Piatigorsky and Unesco International competitions and the English Speaking Union Scholarship to Tanglewood.
Cohen made his recording debut at age nineteen with the Elgar Cello Concerto and London Philharmonic (EMI) which earned a silver disc. He has recorded extensively for BIS, EMI, Deutsche Grammophon, Sony and under long term contract to Decca. Several compositions have been written and dedicated to him.
Robert is an inspirational teacher and has given masterclasses at conservatoires throughout the world. He has mentored a new generation of talented cellists who hold positions as soloists, chamber musicians and principal orchestral cellists.
Robert has been invited to lecture at the Royal Academy of Music London, University of Cambridge, American String Teachers Association Washington DC and at music festivals in Canada, China, Finland, Poland, Sweden, Slovakia and the USA. His Performance and Preparation Lectures provide a fundamental basis of how to approach all aspects of the musician’s life, from entering the practice room to performing on the concert stage. It is a consistent and systematic approach to the whole identity of being a musician.
From 2000–2012 he was Professor of Advanced Solo Studies at the Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana in Lugano. He was awarded Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Music (HonRAM) in 2009. Since 2010, Robert has been professor at the Royal Academy of Music where he dedicates his time to a small class of exceptional students.
Between 2011 and 2018 Robert was cellist of the legendary Fine Arts Quartet.