Kenneth Wilson Cello

“An amazing performance, great poetry. Powerful stuff!”
Richard Farncombe, Music in the Wood.

“Perfect harmonious sweetness”
Cumberland News.


The Poetical Cellist

Kenneth Wilson playing a cello in a library

Hello! I’m Kenneth Wilson. I write poetry and I play the cello. I combine solo cello with poetry, creating performances for many occasions and spaces. The music tells a story, or evokes emotion, which the poetry then explores, teases, reveals – or maybe subverts…

“Easy, take it easy, Love,
I told him, over, often, but…
he wouldn’t listen,
foolish, foolish man…

Extract from In Sally’s Garden, by Kenneth Wilson, a response to the Irish tune, Down by the Salley Garden

Highway Cello

This is a project in development. In early summer 2022 I’m going to cycle from Hadrian’s Wall to Rome. With my cello.

When I stop cycling, I’ll play the cello. So there’ll be scheduled and pop-up concerts, and busking, sometimes programmed, sometimes impromptu and just responding to the moment…

“…Here’s a dare then: get you home
then put that cello in a trailer;
pedal South, go down to Rome
I like a tale – success or failure.
Go on!

Play it every day en route
in squares and streets, in bars, on roofs;
posh restaurants where the food’s en croute,
low dives where no-one gives a F – hoot.
If you dare!

Extract from The Cello Dare, by Kenneth Wilson

Performances

Kenneth Wilson Playing the cello

“The play’s the thing,” isn’t it? Poetry needs performing; music needs playing. It’s incomplete without an audience – a reaction, an interplay.

There are two kinds of performance I find most special – the outdoor pop-up, and the house-concert in someone’s home. Most cellists don’t play outside. They say the sound disappears on the wind (no walls to give you any reverb). But I think there’s a special quality to it. The landscape and the elements add something…

“There is a hidden place I go, for quiet,
halfway up the hill, where the grass
is tussocked; three old wind-shaped pines
share my sheltering wall.

No sheep graze; there are no blundering cattle.
When the clouds take my silver hills
I can hear the mournful fairies
weep for their return.

Halfway Up The Hill, by Kenneth Wilson

YouTube

You can watch my performances on YouTube. Here are a few!

Follow me on Instagram

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