Dr Adrian Mantu is the cellist/founder of the RTÉ ConTempo Quartet (since 1995), Galway Ensemble in Residence since 2002 and RTE, Ireland’s National Television & Radio Broadcaster’s Quartet in Residence, since 2013. Adrian is the Curator of both ‘Enescu Festival Dublin’ and Our Tunes/Dublin Music Town Festival, cello teacher & chamber music visiting teacher at the Royal Irish Academy of Music (since 2015) and the ‘Romanian Cultural Institute’ representative in Ireland.
Adrian has won 16 International Prizes in Cello & Chamber Music Competitions (London, Munich, Berlin, Prague, Bucharest, Graz, Hamburg, Sofia, Rome). He studied cello & chamber music with Radu Aldulescu, Laurence Lesser, Zara Nelsova, Marin Cazacu and members of Hagen, Alban Berg, Amadeus, Quartetto Italiano, Emerson & Tokyo String Quartets at the Royal Academy of Music, London (where he was holding a three years Fellowship), University of Music Bucharest (MA), Escuela Superior de Musica Reina Sophia Madrid (MA), Banff Centre for the Arts Canada, Accademia Chigiana Siena & European Music Academy, in Aix-en-Provence.
Adrian has performed over 3000 concerts around the world in 46 countries (in venus such as Wigmore Hall, Berlin Philharmonic, Tel-Aviv Opera, Carnegie Hall, Gedai Tokyo, Castel Gandolfo, NCH Dublin, Théâtre Chatelet du Paris and Atheneum Bucharest) including the Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelssohn, Schumann, Bartok & Shostakovich String Quartet Cycles and the essential cello concertos (including PhE & Ch Bach, Handel, Boccherini, Vivaldi, Haydn, Beethoven, Tschaikovsky, Brahms, Lalo, Saint-Saens, Elgar, Schumann, Dvorak, Williams, Bernstein, Piazzolla, Constantinescu and Dimitrescu).
Adrian had the honour to perform in front of great personalities (Michael D Higgins, Prince Charles, Nelson Mandela, Pope John Paul II, Nobel Prize Winners & Hollywood Stars). He has composed and arranged the music for the “Trop Tard” film (selected for Cannes Fest), for Steven Spielberg & Tom Hank’s “Band of Brothers” and several silent films.
Adrian was celebrating last season the 20th Anniversary of Contempo Quartet through over 100 concerts in Ireland and abroad (including appearances in NCH, Wigmore Hall and Tours in UK, Romania, NI, Ireland, Italy, Sweden & Finland). He performs equally on baroque, modern & electric cellos.
His latest album “New Airs” went straight to no 3 in the iTunes classical charts!
His recordings can be found on the Universal, Sony, Quartz, Deutsche Schallplatten & NMC labels.
Since joining the Royal Academy Adrian was involved in many wonderful RIAM projects (Stravinsky weekend, Wigmore Hall 1916 events, The Lynch Junior string quartets programme) collaborating with RIAM’s Orchestras, Junior/Senior String Quartets, Composition Students, Cello students and RIAM’s Alumni in different workshops, concerts, master-classes & lectures.
In 2015 he started a DMusPerf at Trinity/RIAM focussing on the string quartet literature in Ireland, since the Rising.
On 10th June 2016 Adrian and his colleagues from the RTÉ ConTempo Quartet were awarded a Degree of Doctor of Music (honoris causa) by the the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG).
Before joining the ConTempo Quartet, Adrian was holding the principal cellist position with both National Symphony Orchestra of Romania & Philamonie der Nationen, Hamburg, Germany. He is regularly invited as a principal guest cellist with the main orchestras in Ireland (RTÉ, Wexford Opera, Camerata, Luminosa, Irish Film Orchestra) and other European Chamber & Symphony Orchestras.