Julia - profile

Julia Neher


What’s the best thing about playing with MCO?

The absence of routine, full dedication of everyone to the music and joy of music making and, probably most importantly, the ability of listening to each other.

What is your most memorable moment with the orchestra?

I’ll definitely never forget jumping in on one day’s notice to play a Schumann quartet with Isabelle Faust, Julia Maria Kretz and Jens Peter Maintz. That was a fantastic experience and I’m very thankful for the trust the MCO gave me.

What do you need to feel at home whilst on tour?

A gym, good coffee, my toiletries, my iPad and good WiFi.

If you could play another instrument what would it be?

Bass trombone. The brass section often has those grand, beautiful chorals in a symphony, I’m always a bit jealous.

Can you tell us something about your instrument?

I found this lovely viola quite recently by pure coincidence… or I’d rather say it found me! It’s a very old German lady, built by Thomas Edlinger in 1677, imagine - it was built even before Bach was born!!


Julia Neher, born 1983 in Wangen im Allgäu, studied at the Hochschule for Musik in Freiburg with Wolfram Christ and with Antoine Tamestit in Köln. Early on she started playing in renowned orchestras such as Berlin Philharmonic, Munich Philharmonic, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and London Philharmonic Orchestra.

In 2005 she became a member of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, where she also met the Mahler Chamber Orchestra for the first time.

After being principal violist of the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra for several years, Julia now holds the same position in the Arctic Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra in Tromsø, Norway.

Her passion for chamber music shows in numerous performances, recently together with Henning Kraggerud, Truls Mørk and Håvard Gimse. Julia is founding member of Trio Brax (Norway) with the unusual instrumentation of viola, saxophone and piano, which is dedicated to new commissions.

Julia plays on a viola built in 1677 by Thomas Edlinger.