Young Artist in Association – Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
Born in Melbourne in 2007, Christian Li first picked up a violin aged five. He captured international attention in 2018 when he became the youngest-ever winner of the Menuhin Competition, winning the joint Junior 1st Prize in Geneva where he play-conducted a movement of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Performing with the Geneva Chamber Orchestra, he also received the Audience Prize and the Composer Award.
Soon after, in 2020, Christian became the youngest artist to sign with Decca Classics. His debut album featuring Vivaldi’s Four Seasons accompanied by works for violin and piano by Bazzini, Kreisler, Massenet and Li Zilli was released in August 2021 gathering five-star reviews. BBC Music Magazine wrote: “He brings thrilling virtuosity and myriad colours to Vivaldi’s fast movements and an exquisitely silky cantabile sound to the aria-like slow movements”.
In concerts, Christian made a series of acclaimed debuts including with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, as well as gave recitals in Israel, Norway and the UK. Currently he is featured as Young Artist in Association with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra for a period of three years during which he performs a range of concertos, chamber music and recitals. In recent and upcoming season he also makes several orchestral debuts including with Auckland Philharmonia in New Zealand, Oslo Philharmonic in Norway, Gavle Symphony in Sweden, Aalborg Symphony in Denmark, and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic in the UK.
Christian performs on the 1737 ex-Paulsen Guarneri del Gesù violin, on loan from a generous benefactor and uses a bow by François Peccatte. He currently studies with Dr. Robin Wilson at the Yehudi Menuhin School in London and enjoys reading, swimming and bike riding in his free time.
“Li presented with a commanding stage presence. (…) he gave an energetic reading of this movement [Mendelssohn Violin Concerto], but clearly showed his enjoyment of the more introspective nature in the second. He finished the concerto with clarity and ease as he moved through the virtuosic moments of the last movement.”