Elinor Frey with short brown hair in a black dress and brown shoes crouching by cello

This event is free and open to all!

Lady Margaret Hall is delighted to welcome LMH Visiting Fellow Elinor Frey, an internationally leading cellist specialising in both Baroque and contemporary music. Dr Frey has transformed the world of cello performance through her diligent research on the work of forgotten composers, including from the early Baroque period. Her recordings and editions of music for the cello as a solo and chamber instrument have garnered worldwide acclaim, including most recently a JUNO Prize for Classical Album of the Year (small ensemble) in 2023. Dr Frey is equally prized as a pedagogue and educator. We are grateful that her visit will include lessons with LMH students and workshops with LMH composers. This recital is presented by Aula, a student-run music collective at LMH dedicated to the celebration of under-represented voices.

Dr Frey will perform alongside LMH Fellow in Music Professor Gascia Ouzounian on the violin and Lynda Sayce on the theorbo. 


Elinor Frey, cello
Gascia Ouzounian, violin

Lynda Sayce, theorbo

Giuseppe Clemente Dall’Abaco (1710-1805)
Sonata IX in C Major, ABV 20
Allegro moderato e staccato 
Minuetto Cantabile (Variatione ad Libitum: Variations composed by Elinor Frey)

Jonathan Packham (b. 1995)
sugar dee-dang (mushrooms with nick) (2017, rev. 2023) for violin and cello

Sonata X in D major, ABV 21
Minuetto (Variatione ad libitum: Variations composed by Elinor Frey)

About Elinor Frey

Elinor Frey is a leading Canadian-American cellist, gambist, and researcher. Her albums on the Belgian label Passacaille and Canadian label Analekta  – many of which are world premiere recordings – are the fruit of long collaborations with artists such as Suzie LeBlanc, Marc Vanscheeuwijck, and Lorenzo Ghielmi, as well as with composers including Maxime McKinley, Linda Catlin Smith, Christian Mason, and Lisa Streich. Elinor’s recording of cello sonatas by Giuseppe Clemente Dall’Abaco received a Diapason d’Or and her critical editions of Dall’Abaco’s cello music is published in collaboration with Walhall Editions. Early Italian Cello Concertos, her album in collaboration with Rosa Barocca orchestra, won the 2023 JUNO Award for Classical Album of the Year (small ensemble).

Elinor is the artistic director of Accademia de’ Dissonanti, an organization for performance and research, and she has performed throughout the Americas and in Europe in recital and with numerous chamber ensembles and orchestras (Constantinople, Les idées heureuses, Il Gardellino, Tafelmusik, Pacific Baroque Orchestra, etc.). In March 2023, she performed Boccherini and Sammartini concertos with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra.

Recipient of dozens of grants and prizes supporting performance and research, including the US-Italy Fulbright Fellowship (studying with Paolo Beschi in Como, Italy) and a recent research residency at the Orpheus Institute in Ghent, Elinor holds degrees from McGill, Mannes, and Juilliard. She teaches Baroque cello and performance practice at McGill University and the Université de Montréal and is a Visiting Fellow in Music (2020–2023) at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford University. Frey was awarded Québec’s Opus Prize for “Performer of the Year” in 2021.

About Lynda Sayce

Lynda Sayce read Music at Oxford, and subsequently studied lute with Jakob Lindberg at the Royal College of Music. She now performs regularly as soloist and continuo player with leading period instrument ensembles worldwide. She is principal lutenist with La Serenissima, The King’s Consort and Ex Cathedra, and appears on more than 100 commercial recordings. She also directs the lute ensemble Chordophony, whose repertory and instrumentarium are based entirely on her research. Lynda has performed with many leading modern instrument orchestras and opera companies, and was chosen by Sir Simon Rattle to play lute continuo for the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra’s recent epic staging of Bach’s St Matthew Passion, performed in Europe and the US. Her discography ranges from some of the earliest surviving lute music to the jazz theorbo part in Harvey Brough’s ‘Requiem in Blue’ and the latest album from folk rock legend Boris Grebenchshikov. Lynda holds a Ph.D for her work on the history of the theorbo, which is being prepared for publication, and has written for the New Grove Dictionary of Music, Early Music, and the art journal Apollo. She also wrote the plucked instrument section of the Ashmolean Museum’s recent new musical instrument catalogue.

A woman with long silver hair sits holding a theorbo, similar to a lute