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Nicola Benedetti is one of the most sought after violinists of her generation. Her ability to captivate audiences with her innate musicianship and dynamic presence, coupled with her wide appeal as a high profile advocate for classical music, has made her one of the most influential classical artists of today. With concerto performances at the heart of her career, Nicola is in much demand with major orchestras and conductors across the globe.  Recent and future performances include engagements with the London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra del Teatro La Fenice, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, WDR Cologne, Danish National Symphony, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Orchestre National D’Ile de France, Beethoven Orchester Bonn, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Chamber, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony of Washington D.C, Dallas Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Melbourne Symphony and Hong Kong Philharmonic amongst others.  Nicola will also embark on tours with the Bergen Philharmonic (Germany), Camerata Salzburg and BBC Scottish Symphony (India). The 14/15 season will see Nicola further her passion for music of the Italian Baroque and historical performance realized in collaborations with Andrea Marcon and WDR Cologne, Venice Baroque Orchestra and a European tour with La Cetra Barokorchester

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Nicola Benedetti is one of the most sought after violinists of her generation. Her ability to captivate audiences with her innate musicianship and dynamic presence, coupled with her wide appeal as a high profile advocate for classical music, has made her one of the most influential classical artists of today.
With concerto performances at the heart of her career, Nicola is in much demand with major orchestras and conductors across the globe.  Recent and future performances include engagements with the London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra del Teatro La Fenice, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, WDR Cologne, Danish National Symphony, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Orchestre National D’Ile de France, Beethoven Orchester Bonn, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Chamber, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony of Washington D.C, Dallas Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Melbourne Symphony and Hong Kong Philharmonic amongst others.  Nicola will also embark on tours with the Bergen Philharmonic (Germany), Camerata Salzburg and BBC Scottish Symphony (India).

The 14/15 season will see Nicola further her passion for music of the Italian Baroque and historical performance realized in collaborations with Andrea Marcon and WDR Cologne, Venice Baroque Orchestra and a European tour with La Cetra Barokorchester Basel.
These international appearances have resulted in her working with a host of distinguished conductors including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Stéphane Denève, Christoph Eschenbach, James Gaffigan, Valery Gergiev, Alan Gilbert, Jakub Hrusa, Louis Langrée, Andrew Litton, Jiří Bělohlávek, Sir Neville Marriner, Diego Matheuz, Kristjan Järvi, Neeme Jaarvi, Paavo Järvi, Donald Runnicles, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Pinchas Zukerman, and Jaap van Zweden. 
With her regular duo partner, pianist Alexei Grynyuk, Nicola frequently performs in recital making appearances in the world’s leading concert halls.  Most recently, she performed at the Dresden Musikfestipiele, the Sapienza in Romea and Maison Symphony in Montreal and prior to this has given recitals in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Hong Kong, Paris, Sacile, New York, Boston, and Washington D.C.  Future recitals include performances at the Royal Albert Hall, Wigmore Hall, Symphony Hall Birmingham, Aix en Provence and Trieste Italy.
Nicola is a devoted chamber musician and collaborates with cellist Leonard Elschenbroich and pianist Alexei Grynyuk, who have been performing as a trio since 2008.   They recently undertook an extensive tour of Scotland in March 2013 including performances at the Edinburgh Usher Hall and Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.  Recent and future highlights include concerts at LSO St. Luke's, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Die Glocke Bremen, Hong Kong City Hall, two tours of South America, and at the Ravinia, Schloss Elmau, Istanbul and Cheltenham Festivals. 

Fiercely committed to music education and to developing young talent, Nicola has formed associations with education establishments including schools, music colleges and local authorities.  In 2010, she became Sistema Scotland’s official musical ‘Big Sister’ for the Big Noise project; a music initiative partnered with Venezuela’s El Sistema (Fundación Musical Simón Bolívar).   As a board member and teacher, Nicola embraces her position of role model to encourage young people to take up music and work hard at it, and she continues to spread this message in school visits and masterclasses, not only in Scotland, but all around the world.

In addition, Nicola recently developed her own education and outreach initiative entitled The Benedetti Sessions. Piloted in March 2013 at Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall, these sessions gave hundreds of aspiring young string players the opportunity to rehearse, undertake and observe masterclasses culminating in a performance alongside Nicola.  She will present The Benedetti Sessions at the Royal Albert Hall in September 2013 and Nicola has plans to develop this exciting initiative on an international scale.

Winner of Best Female Artist at the 2012 Classical BRIT Awards, Nicola records exclusively for Decca (Universal Music).  Her most recent recording, The Silver Violin, is particularly renowned for its success in reaching No. 30 in the U.K. pop charts simultaneously to topping the classical charts.  Her past six recordings on Universal/Deutsche Grammophon include a varied catalogue of works including the Szymanowski Concerto (London Symphony Orchestra/Daniel Harding), newly commissioned works by Tavener and The Lark Ascending (London Philharmonic/Andrew Litton), a disc of virtuosic works (Royal Liverpool Philharmonic/Vasily Petrenko), Tchaikovsky and Bruch Concertos (Czech Philharmonic Orchestra/Jakub Hrusa) and most recently Vivaldi, Tartini and Veracini Concerti (Scottish Chamber Orchestra/Christian Curnyn).
Nicola was appointed as a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2013 New Year Honours, in recognition of her international music career and work with musical charities throughout the U.K. In addition, Nicola has received five honorary degrees to date.

Born in Scotland of Italian heritage, Nicola began violin lessons at the age of five with Brenda Smith.  In 1997, she entered the Yehudi Menuhin School, where she studied with Natasha Boyarskaya.  Upon leaving, she continued her studies with Maciej Rakowski and then Pavel Vernikov, and continues to work with multiple acclaimed teachers and performers.

Nicola plays the Gariel Stradivarius (1717), courtesy of Jonathan Moulds.

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Reviews

"Ms. Benedetti’s sound in the stratosphere of her register is almost improbably pure and gleaming; at times it resembled the supernatural song of a theremin… Ms. Benedetti’s violin soared with luminous grace."

New York Times

"Sensational speed, clarity, articulation, depth, humanity and unerring sense of idiom and style... I realised, from close observation ... her massive drawing power. Every generation sat in that hall. ... You could have heard the proverbial pin drop as she prepared to play. I was awestruck by the influence of the young violinist...As for this breathtaking artist: she has consistently gone from strength to strength; ...she comprehensively revivified [Vivaldi's Four Seasons]; what she achieved was genuinely astonishing, and priceless."

Michael Tumelty, Herald Scotland

"Joshua Bell may be the only violinist under the age of 50 more widely known than Benedetti. … [The] concert was entirely triumphant. Benedetti didn't merely prove that she's shed her former status as a youthful novelty. She's clearly become an important artist of significant merit."

The Kansas City Star

"Benedetti’s trademark is her tone: sweet and clear in the upper register, honeyed in mid-range, and velvety in her low notes."

Classical Voice America

"Benedetti is the type of passionate artist who can help popularize classical music with a new generation."

Pop Culture Classics

"Benedetti keeps ornamentation delicate and rapid, and allows her phrasing to move buoyantly with the music’s dance rhythms rather than weighted down in grandiose Romantic gestures. Against spruce and vigorous accompaniment from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, her sound is significantly streamlined."

Kate Molleson, Herald Scotland (Italia)

"The shorter phrasing demanded by the use of a baroque bow, and the more sparing use of vibrato demanded by baroque style, are constraints which merely increase her expressivity and force her to new heights of intensity."

Warwick Thompson, The Metro (Italia)

"She has a sumptuous tone. She digs into a phrase with plenty of intensity and clearly enjoys showing off her technique, but she never crosses the line to showiness. An admirable violinist, Benedetti [has] certainly earned the right to be taken seriously."

Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times

"From the diamond-cut opening to her high-octane charging of the orchestral batteries through to the cadenza that dominates the first movement, Benedetti played to her very limits."

Hilary Finch, The Times

"She brings ... a degree of heat, subtlety and quicksilver colours only achieved by the world’s best. "

Geoff Brown, The Times (Fantasie)

"Benedetti has a very expressive and sweet tone, reaching out with spirit."

Harald Eggebrecht, Süddeutsche Zeitung

"Benedetti draws an exceptionally rich and full-bodied sound from her Stradivarius instrument. Her vibrato was ample without being excessive, and her bowing has character."

Mark Kanny, Pittsburgh Tribune

"From her first note, it was clear that Benedetti’s artistry is impressive. She projected a sweet, stunning sound on her Stradivarius, played with a fresh spirit and clearly had something to say."

Janelle Gelfand, Cincinnati Enquirer

"Young violinist Nicola Benedetti simply owns this piece [Szymanowski First Violin Concerto]. Her utter self-confidence and very strong technique keep everything marvellously free and spontaneous, but there is real rigour in her work and real commitment. This is a knockout performance."

David Gordon Du, The Vancouver Sun

"Without falling into sentimentality, her flowing legato can be traced to the finest opera and lieder singers."

Marc Geelhoed, Time Out Chicago

"Her approach to the Tchaikovsky is both full-blooded and sensitive. She rides the first movement’s emotional storms with utter confidence and complete command of old Romantic tricks – the portamento glide, the cliff-edge hesitations of rubato."

Geoff Brown, The Times (Tchaikovsky and Bruch: Violin Concertos)

"Her magically sustained pianissimos deserve an Oscar."

Geoff Brown, The Times (Tchaikovsky and Bruch: Violin Concertos)

"...It’s a reading of poised beauty... Benedetti deserves her glory. "

Geoff Brown, The Times (Fantasie)

"It makes and excellent coupling, and Benedetti’s interpretations have much that is individual in them, notably that more regularly than most great virtuosos on disc she uses very often the gentlest of whispered pianissimo, with impressive effect. She establishes that quality in the long first movement of the Tchaikovsky, where so many artists in the lyrical second subject play with a big, fat tone. Her phrasing too is freely expressive, but her regular use of extreme rubato rarely if ever sounds contrived, always spontaneous and from the heart."

Edward Greenfield, Gramophone Magazine (Tchaikovsky and Bruch: Violin Concertos)

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Discography