Robert Cohen

Concert Cellist

For 35 years one of the worlds leading cello soloist, Robert Cohen is an award-winning recording artist, conductor, artistic director and pedagogue who has been broadcast on TV and radio throughout the world. His passionate views on the art of learning, performing and communicating music have been widely published.

CPS

The New Year is a time when many people resolve to do something different, or better, or not at all in the coming months. It could be an effort to lose weight or stop smoking or learn a new language, or even just to be kinder.

Our On That Note contributor Robert Cohen is no different – although many of his resolutions are related to his work as a professional cellist. 

Courtesy of Robert Cohen

Professional musicians practice a lot, and any one of them will tell you that you never stop learning or striving to be better.  However it can be difficult to find the time or opportunity for professional development once you are a working musician.  This month, cellist Robert Cohen discusses one key offering – the concept of master classes.

Courtesy of Robert Cohen

Musicians have an array of influences in their lives that impact who they are as a person and as a musician. For cellist Robert Cohen, his influences range from his father to the music he performs.

"I have more that I can look at that music with," says Cohen. "I have a broader sense of what can happen inside me because of these influences."

However for Cohen, the messages in the music should be the largest influence on a musician. For him, it is essential to bring out the feelings and very essence of the composer in the pieces performed.

Cremona, Italy is the home of Antonio Stradivari, possibly the greatest maker of musical instruments in history. With more than two hundred violin makers living in the small picturesque town, it would make sense that cellist Robert Cohen would find himself there.

"Every restaurant, every hotel, every shop window has violins in it, has instruments of all sorts. It's one of the few places in the world you can walk around with a cello and nobody asks you, 'what is that?'" Cohen says.

Christine Lalla

Cellist Robert Cohen has been on tour over the summer with the Milwaukee-based Fine Arts Quartet. While many people may think the life of a touring musician must be incredibly entertaining and adventurous...being constantly on the move can also have its downsides.

"I suppose not too many people would realize that here you are coming off the platform and it's all very exciting, and the next thing you're washing a shirt in the sink hoping it's going to be okay the next morning," says Cohen.

CPS

As summer winds down, practice may be far removed from the minds of music students. But practice does make perfect, and it is the art of repetition and fine-tuning a sound that adds up to a great musician.

Cellist Robert Cohen says, "Feeling of having done more than you've expected to do...you somehow are able to be more expressive than the effort you're putting in to it. It just seems to pour out of you."

Christine Lalla

The summer festival season is a special time for musicians of all kinds, especially classical musicians. Summer festivals allow them to reach an audience that often does not come to formal concert halls to listen to classical music.

Cellist and Lake Effect contributor Robert Cohen often meets individuals from all walks of life that are genuinely interested in his music during festival trips.

Christine Lalla

Professional musician Robert Cohen spends much of his time performing in various concert venues.

For this month's On That Note segment, Lake Effect wondered what it’s like for a professional musician to go to a concert - not to perform - but to listen to others make music.

"He speaks music. Music is a language, and he speaks it so eloquently and so poetically and beautifully. It's constantly telling me something," says Cohen of one of his idols, Pablo Casals.

Wolfgang Gauch

We talk every month with cellist Robert Cohen of the Fine Arts Quartet, in a series of conversations called On That Note.

Cohen is recently back from London, and this month, he discusses the physical toll of being a professional touring musician, and whether there is regimen to follow to withstand that toll and still perform at your best:

Lake Effect contributor Robert Cohen is an award-winning recording artist, conductor, artistic director and cellist for the Fine Arts Quartet. 

Wolfgang Gauch

On Lake Effect's monthly On That Note segment, award-winning recording artist, conductor, artistic director and cellist Robert Cohen has discussed what goes into creating and maintaining a high level career in classical music. He's discussed choosing a cello and a bow, the challenges in transporting such a valuable instrument internationally, and what kind of preparation goes into each performance.

CPS

Every month, Lake Effect talks with cellist Robert Cohen of the internationally acclaimed Fine Arts Quartet about music and musicianship.

Christine Lalla

Every month, Lake Effect​'s Bonnie North chats about music with internationally renowned cellist Robert Cohen.

Wolfgang Gauch

Lake Effect's monthly On That Note series with contributor and cellist Robert Cohen examines the life of a working, professional, classical musician.

Christine Lalla

Lake Effect's monthly On That Note series with contributor and cellist Robert Cohen examines the life of a working, professional, classical musician.

CPS

The travel involved in being a touring musician might sound glamorous and exotic, but the reality is far more mundane. 

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