Joshua Hugo Gustav von Bohlen

Joshua Hugo von Bohlen has been our leader since 2018.

Joshua Hugo Gustav von Bohlen began playing the piano at six, the violin and tuba at seven. He won a Lady Dacre Major Music Scholarship to attend Emanuel School, London. Upon graduation, Joshua received prizes in both Physics and Music together with an award for his outstanding contribution to the music department. He also won a place at the Pro Corda International training academy

In 2009, Joshua received a scholarship to attend Trinity Conservatoire junior department, studying violin with David Brodowski and tuba with Oren Marshall where he was awarded the Vivian Joseph String Players Prize. A former leader of Surrey County Youth Orchestra Joshua has performed throughout England and Europe, including at the Royal Albert Hall in the presences of their Royal Highnesses the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

A graduate of Trinity Conservatoire Joshua gained his Performance Degree and LTCL in instrumental teaching with Distinction where he studied with Professors Boris Brovtsyn on violin, Matthew Jones on viola, and conducting with Gregory Rose. He was also selected to perform in masterclasses with Michael Bochmann, Ofer Falk, Rivka Golani, and Clio Gould. Joshua also performed alongside members of the BBC Symphony Orchestra live on BBC Radio 3, Philharmonia and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.

As a violinist and chamber musician Joshua has performed throughout London and Surrey on stages such as St Johns Smith Square, St James Theatre and the Rose Theatre, whilst enjoying many engagements with The Alzheimer’s Society. Recently, Joshua partnered with Saki Matsumoto as Duo Sonatina, receiving First Prize in the Chamber Virtuoso Competition at Musikverein in Vienna and has performed the Beethoven Romances in Berlin under the direction of Zakhar Bron.

Joshua is much in demand as a teacher with students of all ages ranging from beginners to advanced players. Since joining Kingston Music Service as a violin tutor, Joshua has been appointed director of the advanced and innovative ensemble, Kingston String Sinfonia. Joshua enjoys performing in many local orchestras and is also leader of Surrey Philharmonic Orchestra.


We also decided to interview him and here are his answers:

Why the violin? 
Because of the challenging repertoire and I have always enjoyed a good tune! 
Do you play any other instruments? 
Yes; tuba, viola and piano. 
When did you start playing? 
I started on piano at 6, then violin and tuba at 7. 
What’s your day job?
Being a 24hr musician 
What’s your favourite piece? 
There are so many pieces that I enjoy, choosing a favourite is hard. But, my favourite composer is Tchaikovsky. 
How did you hear about Dorking Phil? 
Through an old friend and fellow musician of mine, who recommended me to the chair of the orchestra. 
What do you like best about us so far? 
Everyone is really friendly. 
What do you like least about us so far? 
What’s the most important piece of advice you would offer the orchestra? 
Listen, watch and always have a pencil. 
What would be your dream job? 
To carry on in my profession at a high level until I find it. 
What piece would you most like to lead the orchestra playing? 
Any out of: Tchaikovsky’s symphonies 4, 5, 6, Beethoven’s symphonies 3, 5, 7, Brahms symphony no. 1 and Shostakovich symphony no. 5 
What is the origin of your name? 
My name was chosen by my German grandmother in honour of my uncle who played the violin, who unfortunately was killed in the Second World War, aged 19.
Wine or beer? 
Radio 1, 2, 3, or 4? Other? 
Being a Football Fan, either 5Live or Talksport. If not then my iPod on shuffle. 
Is there a Special Someone? 
My mother, as she has completely supported me with much hard work over many years. 
What’s the best section in the orchestra? Careful here!! 
2nd violins of course. But a honourable mention must go to the violas!