Matthew Bethel is a violinist and composer who began learning the violin with Julia Watson at the age of five. During the early years of his musical education, he won numerous prizes in both solo and chamber music.

From the age of 17, Matthew studied with Andrew Watkinson prior to being awarded a Music Scholarship to study at Royal Holloway, University of London. The Scholarship provided him with tuition at the Royal College of Music where he studied with Adrian Levine.

Matthew has performed extensively in London and in Toronto, Canada. At the age of 18 he was awarded a distinction in the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music Diploma. In 2008 he took part in the opening concert of the Clarendon Muse playing the Brahms Horn Trio with David Pyatt and Wing Yun Wu.

He has performed Vaughan William’s The Lark Ascending, Mozart’s A major Concerto with the Watford Symphony Orchestra, Holst’s Concerto for two Violins and Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Matthew has given performances of the Sibelius Concerto in Watford and with the Royal Holloway Symphony Orchestra. He has also led the Fuller String Quartet in performances at the Watford Colosseum, Chorleywood Memorial Hall and The Grove, Watford. He recently performed in front of Her Royal Highness Princess Anne as part of a fundraising event for the Save the Children charity. As an orchestral player he has extensive experience, playing under renowned conductors as Simon Rattle, Christian Tilermann, Sir Mark Elder, Yan Pascal and Trevor Pinnock. He was co-principal for Bruckner’s 9th Symphony under Simon Rattle at the Royal Academy of Music.

Matthew recently completed his Master of Art Degree at the Royal Academy of Music in London and is currently pursuing a variety of performing and composition opportunities. Whilst studying at Royal Holloway, he won the Driver Prize for outstanding performance and the Pulitzer Prize at the Royal Academy of Music for his final recital.


Royal Academy of Music
London, UK

Royal Holloway, University of London
London, UK

Quickfire Questions

What or who inspired you to become a professional musician?
There are too many influences to mention! But Maxim Vengerov inspired me at an early age with his exciting virtuosity when I went to a concert featuring his string ensemble. All the players were extremely impressive and were real performers who could keep the audience absolutely captivated for the whole concert. Many musicians outside of classical music also inspired me, from jazz to rock music.

What is your earliest musical memory?
Energetically dancing around to Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring as a toddler! However I also remember listening to my mother playing piano as a baby.