Comberti-Cole Duo

Comberti-Cole Duo Photo
  • Sebastian Comberti - cello
  • Maggie Cole - fortepiano

Sebastian Comberti and Maggie Cole have played together for many years as members of Trio Goya (also a DWAM artist). Sonatas for cello and fortepiano have long featured on their programmes, and their CD Mozartiana was released in 2004 to critical acclaim. Playing on instruments of the period, using gut strings, a fortepiano by Paul McNulty after a 1795 Anton Walter instrument, and a wealth of experience in historical performance practice, their repertoire encompasses  late 18th and early 19th-century works for cello and fortepiano, from the dawn of the duo-sonata age.

Their explorations of many works by contemporaries of Beethoven have unearthed many rarely heard gems. Programmes are always introduced by the players with readings from contemporary writings, and the background to the instruments and repertoire being performed.

Sebastian Comberti - cello

Born in London, Sebastian Comberti studied in Italy with Amedeo Baldovino and later with Derek Simpson and Sidney Griller at the Royal Academy of Music. He was a founder member of the Bochmann Quartet until 1983 when he became principal cello with the London Mozart Players. He plays with a number of chamber groups including Trio Goya and Divertimenti.

A keen interest in historically informed performance has resulted in participation with a great many of London’s period instrument groups, appearing as principal cello and soloist with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and The Hanover Band.

As a member of several  chamber groups he has recorded for CRD, EMI, Harmonia Mundi, Hyperion, Meridian, Phoenix and  RCA and CPO. In April 2001 Sebastian founded the CD label Cello Classics, devoted to recordings of rare repertoire and artists, himself releasing several CDs  of sonatas by Boccherini, Stephen Paxton and  early 19th-century works with fortepiano, and concertos by Haydn and Zumsteeg with the OAE.

Maggie Cole - fortepiano

American born, Maggie Cole enjoys an international musical life playing and recording on harpsichord, fortepiano and modern piano. Resident in England, she is best known through numerous recitals on BBC Radio 3 and appearances at leading British festivals. Abroad, she has performed in venues from Seattle to Moscow, and from Finland to India.

In addition to a busy solo career, she enjoys duo partnerships with counter tenor Michael Chance, sopranos Nancy Argenta and Julia Gooding, flautist Philippa Davies, with whom she has recorded JS Bach flute sonatas, cellist Steven Isserlis and Baroque violinist Catherine Mackintosh with whom she has recorded the complete JS Bach sonatas for violin and harpsichord. She also performs regularly with Trio Goya, her fortepiano trio with Kati Debretzeni and Sebastian Comberti, the Nash Ensemble, Britten Sinfonia and her USA-based group The Sarasa Chamber Ensemble.

With Sarasa she has been able to extend her love of teaching to the development of a programme which brings music, improvisation and poetry into facilities for youth offenders.
Maggie's recordings for Virgin Classics include Bach's Goldberg Variations, Soler keyboard sonatas, Poulenc's Concert champêtre and Boccherini sonatas with Steven Isserlis. Recent recordings on Chandos and Naxos include The Heart of Invention Haydn trios with Trio Goya, and Schubert sonatas for violin and fortepiano with Jacqueline Ross.

Maggie is professor of fortepiano at Guildhall School of Music and Drama and teaches early keyboards at Dartington International Summer School.