Angela Swanson

Sub-Principal Viola

Angie was initially a violinist, taking up the instrument at the age of seven in her home town of Stockton-on-Tees. She switched to viola at 16 as there were no viola players in the school orchestra and she was the only violinist who had completed all her associated board exams. Angie confesses she ‘hated it’ for a while as she had to learn a new clef but she says ‘I LOVE it now; best instrument ever!’

A student of Nobuko Imai whilst studying at the Royal Northern College of Music, Angie also lived in Holland briefly and cared for Nobuko’s baby daughter in return for lessons, which she says was ‘the best time ever and a real turning point in my playing’.

Her role at the CBSO is her only orchestral job, though stints working at an ice rink in Billingham and doing Christmas postal rounds as a student financially supported Angie’s development as a musician. Outside of the CBSO, Angie loves to cook, play bingo, do Sudoku and puzzles and spending time with her 2 black cats, Merlin and Sparky ‘my furry babies!’

As Sub Principal Viola Angie says her highlights with the CBSO to date are ‘far, far too many to number and they still keep coming. I’ve been truly blessed to be able to work with the three best Music Directors I think this country has seen in my lifetime. I feel Andris Nelsons has provided me with the most honest and open emotional musical memories’.