Cellist Yoanna Prodanova was born in 1992 in Varna, Bulgaria. She completed her studies in 2019 at the Royal Academy of Music in London where she was a Bicentenary Scholar on the prestigious Advanced Diploma course, already having obtained her Bachelor and Master’s degrees at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Previously she studied in Varna and in Montreal where her family immigrated in 2006.
Yoanna has performed concertos with the Royal Academy of Music Orchestra, the Amati Orchestra, the Surrey Philharmonic and the Guildford Symphony Orchestra among others. She regularly performs as a recitalist in the UK and Europe. In 2019 she gave her recital debut in Switzerland at the Studio Ernest Ansermet where she played the Swiss premiere of Valentin Gheorghiu’s sonata for cello and piano with her duo partner Mihai Ritivoiu. This recital was broadcast live on RTS Espace 2.
Yoanna’s debut album including works by Janacek, Fauré and Chopin with Mihai Ritiviu was released in 2020 on the Linn Records label. She has also recorded the Brahms clarinet trio with Joseph Shiner and Somi Kim for Orchid Records.
Yoanna has been invited to festivals such as OCM Prussia Cove, Rencontres de violoncelle de Bélaye in France, Siete Lagos Festival in Patagonia, St Magnus Festival in Orkney and the Lincolnshire Chamber Music Festival, and has collaborated with artists such as Andrew Marriner, Alissa Firsova, Ian Swensen, Matt Hunt and the Doric String Quartet.
Yoanna’s awards include The Philip and Dorothy Green Award for Young Artists (2016), the Sylva Gelber Award (2017, 2018), Tunnell Trust Award (2019) and the First prize at the International Joachim Competition in Weimar with her string quartet, the Barbican Quartet.
Yoanna’s most important cello mentors have been, in chronological order, Daniela Kirilova, Denis Brott, Louise Hopkins, Rebecca Gilliver, Richard Lester and Hannah Roberts. She is extremely grateful to the Canimex Group for the loan of a beautiful cello made by Giuseppe Gagliano in 1788.