Born in 1995, British-German Violist Oscar Holch enjoys a rich and varied musical life performing as a chamber musician and orchestral player across the UK and Europe on both modern and historical instruments. Oscar has performed extensively throughout the UK and Europe in venues such as the Berlin Philharmonie, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Tonhalle Zurich, Palais Garnier in Paris, Barbican Hall, Cadogan Hall, Royal Festival Hall and Snape Maltings. As a chamber musician he has appeared at the BBC Proms, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Cowbridge, Beaminster, Ryedale, Monteleón Fundación and Vilalte festivals and as a recitalist he has performed as part of the Leeds International Concert Series. He has enjoyed collaborating with an eclectic range of artists such as Alexander Melnikov, Levon Chilingirian, Milos Karadaglic, Jess Gillam and with members of the Elias and Chiaroscuro Quartets.
Oscar’s enthusiasm and passion for historical performance benefited greatly from participating in the Monteverdi Apprenticeship scheme with Sir John Eliot Gardiner’s Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, as well as being a member of the Collegium Vocale Gent Academy led by Philippe Herreweghe. He now performs regularly with Balthasar Neumann Orchestra under Thomas Hengelbrock. Recently he has performed with Collegium Vocale Gent (Philippe Herreweghe), Opera Fuoco (David Stern) and the Benedetti Baroque Orchestra (Nicola Benedetti ). He also performs with leading modern orchestras such as the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra and as guest principal viola with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.
He has appeared several times on BBC Radio 3, records regularly for Decca with the saxophonist Jess Gillam and recently recorded two albums as a guest artist with the contemporary music group, Explore Ensemble, recent recipients of the Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung Ensemble Prize, for the music label Another Timbre.
From 2019-2020, Oscar held a Junior Fellowship at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where he completed her Masters degree with Distinction in 2019. Prior to this, he gained a 1st Class Bachelor of Music (Honours) from the Royal Academy of Music, where he was also awarded the Max Gilbert Prize upon graduating. Since April 2022 he has been studying at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Frankfurt am Main (HfMDK) for a masters degree in Historical Performance. His studies have been generously supported by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust and the Leo Birnbaum Scholarship Trust. Oscar has studied with David Takeno, Mateja Marinkovic, Juan- Miguel Hernandez, and Werner Saller (Baroque Viola) and has performed in masterclasses to Tatjana Masurenko, Garth Knox, Thomas Riebl, Hartmut Rhode and Hariolf Schlichtig.
Oscar is also a conductor and formed the Neruda Ensemble whilst still a student in London. With the Neruda Ensemble he directed numerous projects ranging from Haydn Symphonies and Mozart Piano Concerti to Schoenberg Kammersymphonie o.1 op.9 and Luciano Berio’s Folksongs, the latter being programmed as part of the Royal Academy of Music‘s official diary of events. He also worked as Musical Director for a production of Händel’s Acis&Galatea for King‘s College London Opera Society. Upon the invitation of Philippe Herreweghe, he regularly attends and observes a wide range of projects with Collegium Vocale Gent and Orchestre des Champs-Élysées. In July 2022 he participated in the International Kalamata Music Days Conducting Masterclass with Joshua Weilerstein, where he was chosen to conduct Debussy’s Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune with the Kalamata Festival Orchestra in concert.