twitter bird small.jpg
Heather Broadbent (principal cello) was born in Huddersfield and began learning the cello at the age of five. She emigrated to New Zealand at the age of 12 where she gained a distinction in her grade 8 and won a single study scholarship to study the cello at Auckland University. During this time Heather was recognised as a ‘high scorer’ and won the prestigious ‘Westpac’ Chamber music competition. She also appeared on TV in a progamme about New Zealand’s Young Performers.

Heather returned to the UK and continued her studies at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. She was given a beautiful ‘Vuillaume’ cello and studied with Mark Bailey and Rudi De Groote. She participated in masterclasses with Robert Cohen, Raphael Wallfisch and Tsyoshi Tsutsumi and was nominated to participate in the Manchester Cello Festival held at the RNCM. During this visit, Heather met Rostropovich, Janos Starker, Mischa Maisky and many more inspirational figures in the cello world. Heather performed Bloch’s Schelomo with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Saint Saens’ Cello Concerto with the Yorkshire Youth Orchestra during a tour of Italy.

In 2005 Heather continued her studies at the Royal Northern College of Music under Bernard Gregor Smith. She was given an English Cello by the renowned luthier Simon Forster. She continued to play chamber music and wrote a thesis on Student’s views of having multiple teachers at Music College. She became interested in Alexander Technique and attended a course in Andalusia in Spain where she performed as soloist and chamber musician alongside her teacher. The years that followed combined a teaching career and Orchestral playing. Heather was a regular player with the Orchestra of Opera North and she continued her solo playing at a variety of music festivals and societies across the North West.
After completing a PGCE in 2011, Heather embarked on a teaching career and worked as a music teacher in both primary and secondary education. She built up an ensemble of young female cellists The Cellisters at one of her schools and has always been an advocate for the subject of Music, its importance within the curriculum and its range of developmental benefits. Despite a change of career focus, Heather has always remained a keen performer and enjoys nothing more than experiencing the magic that happens when live music is experienced. As a musician, Heather enjoys sharing this experience with others and providing opportunities that go beyond the scope of the concert hall and offering it to as many diverse groups as possible.  
The cello first appeared in the sixteenth century but its importance dates from the seventeenth century when composers started to use it in a continuo role to support the bass line. As its importance grew, composers from the eighteenth century onwards have contributed to the instrument's repertoire, and the concertos by Haydn, Dvorak and Elgar have achieved enormous popularity. Outstanding soloists in recent years have included Jacqueline du Pre, Pablo Casals, Paul Tortlelier and Mstislav Rostropovitch.
Cellos are roughly twice the size of violins, so to play a cello under the chin in the style of a violinist requires a player at least 11ft (3.5m) in height. As such players are very rare in Cheshire, England (though the problem may be less acute in America, where most things seem to be on a larger scale), the Alderley Edge cellists invariably adopt the more familiar posture whereby the cello is played the other way up, supported by a short adjustable spike at the tailpiece end of the instrument.
These spikes are viewed with some alarm by those who rent out concert halls; and with good reason, as they can all too readily leave behind evidence of 'a good hard play' in the form of a neatly bored hole in the hitherto immaculate concert platform. The thoughtful cellist will therefore bring along his or her tiny piece of portable floor, which can be anchored to the chair for the duration of the concert.