Sarah McCabe


Sarah McCabe is a Canadian violist based in London, England.  She specializes in contemporary classical viola music and has premièred many works by composers both in Canada and England.  Sarah also is a songwriter and performs original music for voice, viola, and violin under the name HENDRA.  She is passionate about music and the viola, and goes by @violamadness on social media. 

Sarah McCabe, Violist

Sarah McCabe is a violist originally from Bowmanville Canada, now living in London, England.

Sarah specializes in the performance of new music, premièring many compositions by young composers on both sides of the Atlantic.  She finds it incredibly fulfilling to be part of the birth of a new piece, and finding her own voice in the music.  She works closely with composer Cameron Dodds and has recently completed the recording for his ‘Five Folksongs from an Alternate Reality’ as well as playing the part of Viola/Worm in ‘Unsung Heroes of the Planet: A Fungal Opera.’

Sarah performs as a vocalist as well as a violist, and loves exploring music where she can sing and play viola simultaneously.  In 2018, Sarah co-founded ViolaViola Duo with fellow singing violist Katherine Clarke.  ViolaViola Duo is commissioning new works for two singing violists- the first piece premiered was “Past out of Time” by Peter Davis, with text by Leo Doulton. 

As a composer and songwriter, Sarah writes music both for acoustic singing viola, and electrified viola with loop pedal.  She performs these songs under the name HENDRA
Sarah graduated with her MMUS in Viola Performance from Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2017.  She studied viola with Matthew Jones, and chamber music with Gary Pomeroy.  While at Guildhall, she was a part of many interesting collaborations, including a project with the London School of Contemporary Dance, and creating and hosting Eine Kleine Queer Musik, a showcase of queer composers.

She has won many awards and scholarships, including the Guildhall School Scholar’s Award, the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra Leadership Award, the Kalejs Memorial Award in the Music, the Chipman Scholarship in Music, and the Alice Maud Fitch Grant Memorial Award in Music.

She likes painting, cats, and bouldering, & loves living in London, despite the smog. 

upcoming and recent premières, recordings, & notable performances

2019 Recording of Untitled Short Film by Riika Keranen and Anssi Tirkkonen

2019 Performance at Musique et Vie festival in Geneva

2019 Three Day Residence at Sub Tei Berlin Arts Festival

2019 Performance at the Museu Serralves in Porto, Portugal

2019 Performance at White Chapel Gallery guerilla art project with Katherine Clarke

2018 Première of Past Out of Time by Peter Davis and Leo Doulton, performed with Katherine Clarke

2018 Unsung Heroes of the Planet: A Fungal Opera as Viola/Worm by Cameron Dodds

2018 SpaceBox An immersive art instillation created with Liam Elliot

2018 Première of In Memoriam: Song of the Lost by Richard Melkonian, performed with Alessia Naccarato

2018 Workshop of chamber opera Last Thursday, Viola/Handbell by Lewis Coenan-Rowe & Gareth Mattey

2018 Recording of 5 Folksongs from an Alternate Reality by Cameron Dodds

2018 Recording of DIVA, An Aria for Drag Queen and Chamber Orchestra V. R. Alevizos

2018 Workshop of The Perfect Opera as Viola/Angry Drunk by Peter Davis and Leo Doulton

2017 Recording of Spine by Liam Elliot

2017 Recording of ( ) by Liam Elliot

2017 Recording and Première of barefaced on the bier by Johanna S. Groot Bluemink

2017 Recording and Première of After Images by Alex Tay

2017 Recording and Première of Se Vous N’estes by Thomas Fournil

2017 Première of For Cassini by Rufus Isabelle Elliot at ‘Farewell Saturn: Cassini’s Funeral’

2017 Première of Thomas Fournil’s sound installation for viola, flute, & prepared hurdeygurdey

2017 Viola Soloist for Julian Phillips’ Maxamorphosis with the Sundial Sinfonia

2017 Abbey Road Recording Session; soundtrack for British Film Institute silent film

2017 Soundtrack for short film Threnody, directed by Joseph Armstrong

2017 Première of Looking into the Sky from a Forest by Adam Clarke

2016 Première of Disorderly Compulsive Orders with the London School of Contemporary Dance

2016 Première of new editions of pieces by Peter Warlock with Ember Quartet

2016 Recording and Première of Liam Elliot’s Lagu Biola for Viola and Gamelan Degung

2016 Soloist performing Georg Philipp Telemann’s Viola Concerto in G Major with the Chebucto Symphony Orchestra

2016 Soloist performing Herbert Howell’s Elegy for Viola, String Quartet and String Orchestra with the Acadia University Chamber Orchestra


sarah McCabe is Available to perform for events in LOndon, England and surrounding areas.