Just in: Principal viola leaves the London Symphony Orchestra

Just in: Principal viola leaves the London Symphony Orchestra


norman lebrecht

August 18, 2015

Message from Paul Silverthorne, lynchpin of the LSO:

Dear Friends,

Twenty five years ago this summer I first played with the LSO and in October I leave my position there at the end of a tour of Japan where it all started.

It has been a wonderful period in my life and certainly the most important part of what has been a wonderfully varied career.

However it’s not all over yet! In January I face a new challenge; I shall be taking up the position of Professor of viola at Soochow University in the beautiful ancient city of Suzhou in China. It is a new music school within one of the oldest and most highly regarded universities in China, I shall be joining a fine international faculty and we hope to attract students from all around the world. If anyone wants information about studying in Soochow the website is here and I’m happy to be contacted direct.

I shall be returning frequently to the UK and continuing to perform and teach internationally. I hope to see many of you when your touring brings you to China. Now back to my Mandarin homework!

paul silverthorne



  • Jonathan M. Dunsby says:

    Sure a more important loss is to Mr Silverthorne’s work with London Sinfonietta.

    So – a big week for the 2 LSO principal violas : one off to China and the other leaves his instrument on the train !

  • MacroV says:

    Given that every time I see the LSO on tv the personnel seem to be completely different, it doesn’t really seem like news that one of its members – including one of the few whose names I know – is leaving. But 25 years is a good orchestral tenure and an academic gig is probably a good change of pace.

  • Jonathan M. Dunsby says:

    And Mr S is about 63 or 64 which seems a good age to stop string playing at that high level.