Laura van der Heijden

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For the Dutch handball player, see Laura van der Heijden (handballer).
Laura van der Heijden
Born (1997-04-07) 7 April 1997 (age 18)
West Sussex
Genres classical
Instruments Cello, piano
Years active 2005–present

Laura van der Heijden (born 7 April 1997) is a British cellist. She won the 2012 BBC Young Musician of the Year competition.

Born in West Sussex, England, van der Heijden is the youngest daughter of a Dutch father and Swiss mother. Her musical studies began at age 4 on recorder, then piano at age 5 and cello at age 6. In 2005, she joined the junior department of the Royal College of Music, where she studied piano under Emily Jeffrey. Her first public performance was at age nine with Forest Row's Jupiter Chamber Orchestra.[1] She has been a pupil with Leonid Gorokhov since 2008.[2]

In 2010, van der Heijden won the Erster Preis mit Auszeichnung (full marks) and a special prize in the final of the Swiss National Youth Music Competition, which led to her performing the Boccherini Cello Concerto in G with the Zurich Kammer Orchestra at the Zurich Tonhalle in January 2011. She was also the 2011 winner of the Marjorie Humby competition at the Royal College of Music and was awarded the 2012 Director's Prize at RCM Junior Department. van der Heijden won the BBC Young Musician of the Year on 13 May 2012, where in the final round, she played William Walton's Cello Concerto with Kirill Karabits and the now Royal Northern Sinfonia, on a 1911 Celeste Farotti cello loaned to her by Gorokhov.[3]

van der Heijden performs on a 1935 cello by Galileo Arcellaschi and a 1987 cello by Colin Irving. She became an Ambassador for The Prince's Foundation for Children and the Arts in January 2013.[4]


  1. ^ Emma Lee-Potter (2012-05-24). "Cellist Laura is Young Musician of the Year at 15". SecEd. Retrieved 2014-12-20. 
  2. ^ "Sackville student Laura crowned BBC Young Musician 2012". East Grinstead Courier. 2012-05-17. Retrieved 2014-12-20. 
  3. ^ "Cellist wins BBC Young Musician prize". BBC News. 2012-05-14. Retrieved 2014-12-20. 
  4. ^ "Laura van der Heijden Joins Children & The Arts" (Press release). The Prince's Foundation for Children and the Art. 23 January 2013. Retrieved 2014-12-20. 

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