Leonidas Kavakos is one of todays most sought after virtuoso violinists.
Born in Athens to a musical family with strong traditions in folk music, Kavakos began studying violin with his father, continuing his studies at the Greek Conservatory with Stelios Kafantaris. An Onassis Foundation scholarship enabled him to attend master classes with Joseph Gingold at Indiana University, and he made his concert debut at the Athens Festival in 1984.
Kavakos' European reputation spread rapidly following his winning of both the Sibelius Competition in 1985 and the Paganini competition in 1988. Major debuts at the London/BBC Proms and international festivals in Edinburgh, Salzburg, Ravinia, Mostly Mozart, Saratoga, and the Hollywood Bowl, were followed by invitations to play with most of the worlds leading orchestras. These have included the London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony, City of Birmingham Symphony, Munich Philharmonic, NDR Hamburg, NHK Symphony and in North America the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the symphony orchestras of Chicago, Montreal, and the orchestras of Cleveland and Philadelphia.
As an orchestral soloist, Kavakos has worked with many celebrated conductors including, Conlon, Dutoit, Neeme Järvi, Sir Andrew Davis, Metzmacher, Norrington, Oramo and Salonen as well as Slatkin, Vänskä, Vegh, Sawallisch and Welser-Möst.
Highlights of the 01-2 season included his debut performance as Principal Guest Artist of the Camerata Salzburg and subsequent performances elsewhere in Germany and Austria, tours to Germany with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, and to Macau with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, return visits to London Symphony Orchestra, RAI Torino, Gothenburg Symphony, debuts with the Toronto Symphony, Orchestre de Paris and Maggio Musicale in Florence, and recitals in Paris, Germany, Italy, and Switzerland.
Kavakoss 02-3 season includes debuts with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestra of Europe, and appearances at the Lucerne and Edinburgh Festivals. He will also tour with the Rotterdam Philharmonic and Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestras, perform at Carnegie Hall with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Sawallisch and in London with the London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Masur. Other engagements include a return visit to NHK Symphony, a tour with Budapest Festival Orchestra and recitals in Paris, Dublin, Tokyo and across Italy.
An active chamber musician, Kavakos has been the Artistic Director of his own chamber music cycle in the Megaron, Athens since 1992. He regularly appears at some of the world's foremost chamber music festivals, collaborating with such distinguished partners as Davidovich, Gutman, Imai, Kashkashian, Rostropovich and Vogt.
Kavakos ability in diverse repertoire is reflected in the exciting projects in which he has been involved and the critical acclaim they have received. From winning the 1991 Gramophone Award for the world premiere recording of the original version of the Sibelius concerto (BIS), he has recently gone on to record the Hindemith concerto (Chandos), a CD of solo sonatas by Ysale (BIS), cited as the best recording of the works ever to be made, and a critically acclaimed recording of music by Kreisler (BIS), highlighted as Editors Choice in the April 2001 edition of Gramophone Magazine. As well as playing the Korngold concerto in a documentary and concert for ARTE TV, Kavakos was the only soloist in the recent 2nd series of BBC Televisions enormously successful Masterworks, playing the elegiac Berg concerto with the BBC SO with Sir Andrew Davis.
Recently appointed the first ever Principal Guest Artist of the Camerata Salzburg, this unique association offers Kavakos the opportunity to create programmes, conduct and play in the worlds most renowned venues with this celebrated ensemble. Kavakos plays the "Falmouth" Stradivarius of 1692.
For further publicity information on this artist, please click here