About

A leading performer for over twenty years, Matthew Schellhorn regularly appears at major venues and festivals throughout the UK and has recorded numerous critically acclaimed albums.
Following study in Manchester and Cambridge, with teachers including David Hartigan, Maria Curcio, Peter Hill and Yvonne Loriod-Messiaen, Matthew’s debut album of Messiaen chamber music, including the Quatuor pour la fin du TempsMessiaen: Chamber Works (Signum Classics SIGCD126) – received positive reviews on both sides of the Atlantic and was awarded an AllMusic Classical Editors’ Favourite.

Matthew's latest commercial release on Naxos – Herbert Howells: Piano Music, Vol. 1 – was praised by Gramophone praised as “superbly performed” with “immaculately stylish, raptly concentrated and memorably tender advocacy”. Spending five weeks in the Official Classical Charts (entering at No. 4), it received a Presto Classical Editors' Choice.

A prominent performer of new music, Matthew has given over a hundred premieres and has commissioned many solo and chamber works. In 2014, Diatribe Records released Matthew Schellhorn’s first solo album, Ian Wilson: Stations (Diatribe Records DIACD016), a world premiere recording featured on RTÉ lyric fm as one of the ‘great cycles of 21st-century piano music’. His commission from Colin Riley, As the Tender Twilight Covers, was released on NMC in 2017 (NMC Recordings NMC D241). He is also the dedicatee of several works, including Ian Wilson’s piano concerto Flags and Emblems, of which he gave the world premiere with the Ulster Orchestra broadcast live on BBC Radio 3.

Matthew’s performances of the music of Olivier Messiaen have been met with superlative critical approval and he has been a regular guest soloist in performances of Trois petites Liturgies de la Présence Divine, Turangalîla-Symphonie, Réveil des Oiseaux and Oiseaux Exotiques with orchestras including the London Mozart Players.

Matthew is a successful collaborative artist with past seasons seing performances with the Carducci, Fitzwilliam and RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartets. He features on Outside (Nonclassical NONCLSS013), debut album of violinist Aisha Orazbayeva. Gramophone hailed his recent disc of songs by Joseph Horovitz and Geoffrey Bush with soprano Susanna Fairbairn (Naxos 8.571378) as ‘a splendidly stylish and communicative alliance’.

In addition to his work on the concert platform, Matthew Schellhorn is a passionate educator and communicator, giving regular masterclasses and workshops in the UK and abroad. He has visited many university music departments and conservatoires to talk about his work in a wide range of performance contexts, including performance practice, commissioning and interpreting new works, working with today’s composers and bringing out fresh ideas in the interpretation of well known repertoire. He maintains a private teaching practice from his home in London.

His work in academia has included giving lecture recitals and teaching subjects including 20th- and 21st-century music. In 2016, he was elected to membership of the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge. He was recently appointed to the International Advisory Board of Naxos Musicology International (NMI), a new online platform for music scholarship publishing lively and engaging content from a wide range of scholars and students, as well as music industry practitioners and general enthusiasts.

He is Patron of The Sand House Charity, which supports educational, artistic and heritage projects linked with South Yorkshire, and is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Musicians.

Selected live reviews

His playing is a model of clarity ... a perfect balance of academic rigour allied to musical sensitivity. There is weight and power when the music requires it, but the abiding sense is of precision and poise
MusicWeb International
immaculately stylish, raptly concentrated and memorably tender advocacy
Gramophone
Not a nuance was left unexpressed, not a silence given less than its due importance, not an emotional pivot-point neglected.
MusicWeb International
His keyboard performances fascinate and enliven the ear and mind.
Fanfare
superbly performed ... copiously rewarding
Gramophone
Schellhorn possesses a seemingly perfect and complete piano technique ... his readings, always vivid and dramatic, were deeply satisfying.
Musical Opinion
Schellhorn was in his element, letting the pedalled chords float and calibrating the interplay between darkness and light with fastidious care.
The Independent
Schellhorn’s combination of clarity, sense of line and brilliant technique ... a sequence of deeply felt performances.
Classical Music Daily