Svetlana started learning cello at the age of five and the following year joined a specialist music school in Voronezh, Russia. At the age of eight she started competing in national and international competitions and aged 11 made her debut with Voronezh Symphony Orchestra, followed by a performance of Saint-Saëns Cello Concerto in Voronezh Town Hall a year later. Regular performances with various orchestras in Russia and the UK have followed ever since.
In 2001 Svetlana received a scholarship to study at the Purcell School, London, under Natalia Puvlytskaya. As a result of winning the Middle School Concerto Competition in 2002, she performed the Elgar Cello Concerto with Purcell Symphony Orchestra. At the age of fifteen she gave two performances of Tchaikovsky Rococo Variations with VSO conducted by Alexander Ivashkin, followed by a concert tour of Spain. The following year Svetlana had a masterclass with Mstislav Rostropovich in Voronezh, which was broadcast on national TV and radio in Russia.
A scholarship to the Royal Northern College of Music saw her studying with Hannah Roberts from 2006, and Svetlana graduated with first class honours prior to completing a Master of Music in Solo Performance with distinction.
She has taken part in masterclasses with Ralph Kirshbaum, Heinrich Schiff, Garry Hoffman, Lynn Harrell, Raphael Wallfisch, Karine Georgian and Giovanni Sollima, and has performed at many renowned venues including the Royal Festival Hall, St Martin in the Fields and Buckingham Palace.
Svetlana is extremely grateful for the support she has received during her studies at the RNCM and would like to thank the RNCM scholarship, Sir John Barbirolli Memorial Foundation, Martin Musical Scholarship Fund, Muriel Berry Scholarship, Jellis bequest, Leverhulme Trust, The Stephen Bell Charitable Trust Award, Allan & Nesta Ferguson Charitable Trust, The Haworth Trust and Musicians Benevolent Fund Postgraduate Performance Award.
Which three people, living or dead, would you most like to have dinner with and why?
Benjamin Britten – I admire his cello music
Jamie Oliver – he’ll cook a nice dinner
Poirot (David Suchet) – he is my favourite TV character
If you could play another instrument, what would it be and why?
Probably piano because I admire its independence.
Svetlana’s place in Southbank Sinfonia is generously supported by Tolibkhon Shakhidi.