Cellist and improviser, nourished by the great classical tradition and explorer of new modes of expression, Agnès Vesterman follows an original path at the frontier of artistic worlds. Between classical concerts and various cross-disciplinary collaborations with theater, cinema and other styles of traditional and contemporary music, she has developed an original and innovative pedagogy.

An extensive study of musical gesture (Alexander Method, Tai Chi, Dalcroze) led her to improvisation, following encounters with Vincent Courtois, Joëlle Léandre, Patrick Moutal and Ernst Reijdegger. Since 2002, she has improvised and composed several scores for shows and films, and gives numerous recitals that willingly mix written and improvised music.

In 2016, she was awarded a Master’s degree in research and creation at the Université Paris Est for composition work on film and text.

Cellist with the Arpeggione Quartet from 1988 to 2001, with whom she toured Europe’s most prestigious venues and festivals for thirteen years, she continues to give numerous chamber music concerts.

In 2006, she formed a duo with Garth Knox, on viola and viola d’amore. Deliberately mixing repertoires ranging from Baroque to contemporary, they recorded two CDs for ECM, followed by the Book of Angels Leonard volume n°30 (2016). Also for ECM, she records Valentin Silvestrov’s Hieroglyphen der Nacht duets with cellist Anja Lechner (2017).

After studying with Michel Strauss at the Conservatoire de Boulogne-Billancourt, she went to the United States to study with great masters, first at Yale University with Aldo Parisot and the Tokyo Quartet, then with Harvey Shapiro, professor at the Juilliard School in New York, heir to a great tradition of performers (Alexanian – assistant to Casals, Toscanini, Rubinstein, Primrose, Feuerman…).

On her return to France, she joined the Arpeggione Quartet in 1988, perfecting her skills with the Amadeus Quartet, the Alban Berg Quartet, Eugen Lener of the Kolisch Quartet (which premiered Schönberg’s quartets) and Walter Levin of the Lasalle Quartet.

Agnès Vesterman was one of the first in France to take an interest in body techniques (Alexander Technique, Taichi Chuan, Rythmique Dalcroze) and their application to string instruments. She has taken part in numerous training courses on the body and the instrument. (Pôles Sup, Cnsmdp, Médecine de l’art…).

Since 2003, she has been involved in improvisation projects and regularly leads improvisation and creative workshops.

Her reflections on the integration of these techniques into the teaching of classical music resulted in a dissertation entitled “L’attitude d’improvisation dans l’apprentissage instrumental” (available for consultation at the CNSMDP).

Professor of chamber music at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique – CNSMDP de Paris, cello teacher at the Conservatoire National Régional – CRR de Boulogne-Billancourt and also at the french Superior Pole – Pôles Supérieurs, Agnès Vesterman has integrated the many facets of her experience into her pedagogy. The interpretation of musical text is illuminated by the tools of improvisation and a global approach to the performer and his or her text.