Tomo Keller was born in Stuttgart to German-Japanese musicians and started playing the violin at the age of six. At ten years old he gave his first performances with orchestra, going on to study at Vienna’s University for Music and Performing Arts and New York’s Juilliard School of Music. Numerous top prizes and awards followed: the Fritz Kreisler Competition, the Johannes Brahms Competition and the German Music Competition Berlin where he was awarded the Grand Prize. He has since performed at major concert halls all around the world and has been invited to music festivals including the Schleswig Holstein Music Festival, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festspiele, Edinburgh Festival and Bravo! Vail Colorado. He has also been a frequent guest on radio and television broadcasts on ARD, BBC, NHK and ORF.
Tomo is a much sought-after orchestral leader and director, having led the London Symphony Orchestra and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and has also appeared with more than 20 orchestras as guest leader across Europe, the USA and Asia. Tomo was appointed Director and Leader of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields in 2016 and appears with them worldwide as leader, director, chamber musician and soloist.
As a soloist, Tomo has also performed with the Beethovenhalle Orchestra Bonn, St Petersburg Camerata, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Vienna Symphony Orchestra. Concert tours have led him all across Europe, as well as Russia, Asia, America and the Middle East.
2021/22, Tomo was artist-in-residence at the Loh-Orchestra Sondershausen in Germany, featuring as soloist, director and conductor, and premiered a new piece written for him by Christoph Ehrenfellner. Wiener G’schichten also received its UK premiere in London with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields in 2022.
Tomo’s recordings include solo works by Bach, Bartok and Ysaye, orchestral recordings including Stravinsky’s Apollon musagète with Sir John Eliot Gardiner/LSO and Grammy Award winning Avant Gershwin with Patti Austin and the WDR Big Band. In 2020 a DVD/CD box set with all Beethoven piano concertos was released by Deutsche Grammophon to great critical acclaim, featuring pianist Jan Lisiecki with Tomo directing the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. A CD with works by Kurt Atterberg will be released on Ondine in 2023, featuring the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Tomo as soloist and director in Atterberg’s Suite for violin and viola.
He has given violin, chamber music and orchestral master classes at all major London Music Colleges as well as at Yale university and numerous other schools in the USA and the Far East. In early 2022 he was appointed Professor of violin at the HEMU Sion in Switzerland.
Tomo plays a fine violin by Antonio Stradivari known as the ‘ex-Braga’, kindly loaned to him through the Beare’s International Violin Society.