Skip to main content

Denis Severin

Denis Severin is Professor for Cello at the University of Music in Geneva, where he teaches cello as a main subject, Baroque cello as a subsidiary subject, and chamber music. He has been teaching the cello at the University of the Arts in Bern since 2009.

In addition, Denis Severin is the director of various educational and artistic projects at the Central Conservatory of Music Beijing (China), Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory St Petersburg (Russia), Latvian Academy of Music (Riga), Franz Liszt Music Academy (Budapest), Music Academy Gdansk (Poland). He gives instruction at master classes in Germany, France, Georgia, Brazil and Ukraine. The Madrid conservatory “Centro superior de ensenanza musical Katarina Gurska” (Spain), the National Academy of Music Kyiv and the University of the Arts Kharkiv (Ukraine) regularly invite him to give classes as guest professor.

A multiple prizewinner of international competitions in Italy, Spain and Greece, Denis Severin won prizes at ECHO KLASSIK 2015, the International Classical Music Awards (ICMA) 2018 and the GRAMMY AWARDS 2007.

Denis Severin has been a member of the jury at the international chamber music competition in Ilzach (France), the 7th International Tchaikovsky Competition for young musicians in Montreux (Switzerland) and the Swiss Young Musicians’ Competition. He is a member of the board of ESTA Switzerland (European String Teachers Association) and President of the Basel association Art Without Borders.

As soloist, Denis Severin has performed with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (Geneva), Basel Symphony Orchestra, European Youth Symphony Orchestra, Ukrainian State Orchestra, Kyiv Chamber Orchestra (Ukraine), Armenian State Chamber Orchestra, St. Petersburg Capella State Orchestra, Archangel State Orchestra (Russia) and the Chamber Orchestra of the Poznan Philharmonie (Poland).

As chamber musician, Denis Severin has played in numerous chamber and Baroque ensembles: Spyros Piano Trio, Ensemble Baroque de Limoges (France), Capella Gabetta, Harmonie Universelle (Germany), Wiener-Akademie, Ars Antiqua (Austria), Swiss Baroque Soloists, Les Solistes de Genève, Kammerorchester Basel (Switzerland), Russian Virtuosi of Europe (London, England). 

He has participated in concerts and recordings with Quatuor Mosaïques, Sergio Azzolini, Natalia Gutman, Cecilia Bartoli, Christopher Hogwood, Jordi Savall, Martin Haselböck, Christophe Coin, Patrick Cohen, Heinz Holliger, Erich Hörbath, Andres Gabetta, Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Bartek Niziol and Tatiana Korsunskaya.

He is regularly invited to festivals worldwide: Lucerne Festival, Baroque Festival Schwetzingen, Kronberg Cello Festival, Los Siglos de Oro Madrid, Musikfest Bremen, Festival & Masterclass Pila (Poland) and many more.

The many venues where Denis Severin has appeared include the Théâtre du Châtelet, Cité de la Musique Paris, Musikverein Wien, Konzerthaus Berlin, Queen Elizabeth Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Lutoslawski Concert Hall Warsaw, Victoria Hall Geneva, the State Philharmonic Hall Kyiv, the Czech Philharmonic Hall Prague, Tonhalle Zürich and KKL Lucerne.

Denis Severin studied at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow, where he attained his concert diploma, and continued his studies as Assistant to Prof. Dmitry Miller.  He then studied at the University of Music in Geneva (Prof. Daniel Grosgurin) and at the Music Academy in Basel (Prof. Thomas Demenga).  He gained valuable insights from the classes of Jürg Wyttenbach, Gérard Wyss (New Music & Chamber Music) and in the class of Käthi Gohl-Moser (Methodology & Education). He completed his studies by gaining the Teaching and Soloist Diploma with distinction.

He took advanced instruction in Baroque cello, chamber music and string quartet from Prof. Christophe Coin at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis.

He has taken part in master classes led by Janos Starker, Natalia Gutman, Antonio Meneses, Truls Mork, Gary Hoffman, Wolfgang Böttcher and Anner Bylsma. 


NAXOS  Brandenburg Concertos of Johann Sebastian Bach, GRAMMY nomination 2007

SONY  Works by Sergey Rachmaninov for cello and piano, 2009

Pan Classics  Quintets by Giuseppe Maria Cambini, 2010

MDG Musikhaus Dabringhaus & Grimm  Works by Luise Adolpha Le Beau, ECHO KLASSIK Prize 2015

Radio recordings: Schweizer Radio DRS 2, Deutschlandfunk, Radio de la Suisse Romande (Espace-2), Radio France, Radio Belgrade, National Radio Poland.