Madeleine Pickering is a British violinist and violist, driven by a desire to bless listeners and performers with music. She enjoys a varied musical life as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player and director, and these have taken her to festivals such as the BBC Proms, Young Euro Classic (Berlin), and Morellino Classica Festival (Italy), and venues including the Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Princess Alexandra Hall and Wigmore Hall. She is currently studying on the Konzertexamen programme in the class of Michael Foyle at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln.
Recent highlights include winning a Philip and Dorothy Green Young Artist award for Making Music UK (2021-23), and being a joint recipient of the Len Lickorish Memorial Prize for the String Player of Promise in the strings category of the Royal Overseas League Annual Music Competition (2022). Madeleine has given performances of major violin and viola concertos with numerous British orchestras, and, having gained a reputation as one of the UK’s leading chamber musicians, she is regularly invited to perform at concert series and festivals across the UK.
Passionate about the collective musical experience of orchestral playing, Madeleine enjoys regular work with the London Symphony Orchestra, Collegium, Britten Sinfonia, Fantasia Orchestra, Echo Ensemble and Piccadilly Sinfonietta. She co-led the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain as a teenager, and was leader of all the Royal Academy of Music orchestras, including the Royal Academy Opera Orchestra as a first-year undergraduate. She is now co-founder and leader of Seida Ensemble, a brand new, unconducted string orchestra made up of exciting young musicians from London and Europe.
Madeleine was a scholarship student at the Royal Academy of Music in London from 2015-21, where she studied under professors Maureen Smith, Tasmin Little and Michael Foyle (violin), Garfield Jackson and Martin Outram (viola). During her time as a student she won all the major prizes for her instruments: the Theodore Holland Viola Prize (2016), the Winifred Small Prize for Solo Violin (2020) and the Martin/Hooton Violin Concerto Prize (2021). The latter led to her directing and performing as soloist with the Academy String Orchestra in a recording of Mendelssohn’s Concerto in D minor for Violin and String Orchestra. She led two prize-winning string quartets, and was invited to perform with Joanna MacGregor and Adrian Brendel in the Academy Piano Festival in 2018.
Madeleine is grateful to have received generous support from Help Musicians UK, Rachel and Peter Martin, The Rosemary Bugden Charitable Trust and Talent Unlimited, and she has been a member of the Musicians’ Company Young Artists’ Programme since 2019, when she received the Biddy Baxter and John Hosier Music Trust Special Award.
Madeleine plays a violin by Giovanni Pistucci of Naples, dating from c.1920, generously loaned to her by the Harrison-Frank Foundation in association with J&A Beare. Her viola was made by Alexandra Apenberg in 2016.