UNITED STRINGS OF EUROPE
The United Strings of Europe has earned a reputation as a dynamic and passionate ensemble delighting audiences across Europe and the Middle East with its celebration of cultural diversity. Under the direction of Artistic Director Julian Azkoul and Associate Conductor Franck Fontcouberte, the ensemble is increasingly recognised for its exciting performances, high-profile collaborations, and educational initiatives.
The 2018-19 season saw the launch of USE’s New Horizons International Artist Concert Series in London featuring celebrated violinists Amalia Hall and Itamar Zorman, as well as a tour to Lebanon and several projects in France and Switzerland: residencies at the Théâtre de Valence and Théâtre Molière de Sète, and performances at the Voix de Maguelone and Musicasète festivals. The second season of New Horizons will feature flute superstar Sébastian Jacot (7 Nov 2019), the beguiling soprano Héloïse Werner (3 Feb 2020), and pianists Simon Callaghan and Denis Badault.
With a track record of bringing music to new audiences, USE has worked closely with a number of composers. Recent highlights include bespoke arrangements of Gareth Farr’s Mondo Rondo and Arturo Corrales’ Mono Espacial, the world premiere of David Winkler's Double Concerto No. 3 written for pianist Walter Delahunt, violinist Julian Azkoul and the United Strings of Europe, works by Stevan Hristic, Cyril Squire, Bechara El-Khoury and Charbel Rouhana as well as the world premiere of Mateja Marinkovic's Violin Concerto ‘Balkan Tales’.
Formed in 2012 at the Royal Academy of Music in London, all the members of the United Strings of Europe are distinguished chamber musicians and principal orchestral players who share a passion for ensemble playing. The group has developed an important outreach programme which includes an innovative programme of workshops tailored to young people, side-by-side projects with music students, composers and conductors, and work with refugees and disadvantaged youth in partnership with NGOs and foundations in the UK and Lebanon.