A versatile chamber musician and soloist, cellist Caleb van der Swaagh is a recent alumnus of Ensemble ACJW (now known as Ensemble Connect) – a program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. Caleb is the recipient of the Tanglewood Karl Zeise Memorial Cello Prize and the Manhattan School of Music Pablo Casals Award, and was also a grant recipient from the Virtu Foundation. As a chamber musician, Caleb has performed with the Borromeo String Quartet, The Knights, A Far Cry, and the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players and has recently appeared at such festivals as the Chelsea Music Festival, Ottawa ChamberFest, Garth Newel Music Center, Music from Montauk, 23Arts Summer Music Festival Edelio Festival, and Birdfoot Festival. As a recording artist, Caleb’s most recent release is the Carter Clarinet Quintet with Phoenix Ensemble on Navona/Naxos and he has appeared on many chamber music recordings including albums on Albany Records,Bright Shiney Things, Supertrain Records, Linn Records, and Avie Records.
An advocate of contemporary music, Caleb is a member of counter)induction and Ensemble Échappé and also performs with Argento Chamber Ensemble, Either/Or, S.E.M Ensemble, and Hotel Elefant. He has worked with such composers as Steve Reich, Alvin Lucier, Sebastian Currier, Philippe Manoury, and David Lang, and has premiered many works by composers of his own generation. He also performs his own arrangements and transcriptions of compositions that range from Renaissance viola da gamba music to jazz.
A native New Yorker, Caleb graduated magna cum laude from Columbia University as part of the Columbia – Juilliard Exchange program with a degree in Classics and Medieval & Renaissance Studies. Caleb received his master’s degree with academic honors from New England Conservatory and later studied at the Manhattan School of Music. His primary teachers are Bonnie Hampton, Bernard Greenhouse, Laurence Lesser, and David Geber. Caleb plays on a cello made by David Wiebe in 2012. For more information, visit www.calebvanderswaagh.com.