Cellist Gabriel Cabezas is a precise and passionate performer whose easy command of the instrument and stunning artistic statements have made him one of his generation’s most sought-after soloists and collaborators. His neoteric career spans solo appearances, chamber music, work with bands and songwriters, and curation.
Gabriel is an unusually engaged player; he imbues the pillar scores of the cello repertoire with the vivacity of newly-written work and performs world premieres with gravitas and command. Gabriel has appeared with America’s finest symphony orchestras, including those of Philadelphia, Chicago, Cleveland, New York, and Los Angeles, and has premiered dozens of new works by some of the most brilliant composers of his time, including Gabriella Smith, Paul Wiancko, and Jessie Montgomery.
This season, Gabriel launches the Waypoints series with the Metropolis Ensemble, with whom he is a resident artist. Other season highlights include appearances on the New York Philharmonic’s Nightcap series, curated by composers Steve Reich and Bryce Dessner, performances at the Phillips Collection in Washington, DC, the Momentary in Arkansas, and a solo recital at New York’s Merkin Concert Hall.
Gabriel is a member of the chamber sextet yMusic, "six contemporary classical polymaths who playfully overstep the boundaries of musical genres” (The New Yorker). Their virtuosic execution and unique configuration (string trio, flute, clarinet, and trumpet) has attracted the attention of high profile collaborators—from Paul Simon to Bill T. Jones to Ben Folds—and inspired original works by some of today’s foremost composers, including Nico Muhly, Missy Mazzoli and Andrew Norman. He is also the co-founder of Duende, a new music and contemporary dance collective that focuses on the interaction between musicians and dancers in the realization of new scores.
Gabriel’s first full length album, a recording of Benjamin Britten’s Cello Suites, was released on PEOPLE, a collaborative online streaming platform created by Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and The National’s Aaron Dessner. He is currently working on an album of cello music by Gabriella Smith, to be released on the Icelandic record label Bedroom Community. In 2016, Gabriel received the Sphinx Medal of Excellence, a career grant awarded to emerging classical artists of color, who, early in their professional career, demonstrate artistic excellence, outstanding work ethic, a spirit of determination, and ongoing commitment to leadership. Gabriel studied at the Curtis Institute of Music under Carter Brey.
“His playing combined polished execution with a burnished warmth of tone (especially in the lower strings) and subtlety of phrasing and inflection that allowed the music to make its modest expressive points convincingly… There was real maturity in the cellist's playing, enough to make one eager to hear him again.” — Chicago Tribune