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4 Violinists Of All Time You Should Listen To

Playing the violin is my passion, listening, and playing classical music fulfills my life. I play in an orchestra.

Since I play the violin as a child - I was 7 when I started playing the violin - I listened to a lot of violinists to get inspired. I loved following those violinists. Lately, I am learning about other violinists too and I love to hear the promised and established violinists.

This is a list of violinists who are still playing today.

Kirill Troussov

Russian-born German violinist Kirill Troussov began to play the violin at the age of four with Irina Etigon at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory. In 1990 he moved with his family to Germany. There he studied at the Musikhochschule Lübeck and the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln with professor Zakhar Bron. With this great internationally renowned teacher, he also studied at the Reina Sofía School of Music in Madrid for a year.

Kirill Troussov finished his education with Christoph Poppen at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München. He got a Master of Arts. Other great internationally renowned teachers were Igor Oistrach and Yehudi Menuhin.


  • 1993 - First prize at the International Oleg Kagan Violin Competition
  • 1993 - prize winner at the Yehudi Menuhin International Competition for Young Violinists in Folkestone
  • 1994 - First prize at the International Henryk Wieniawski Violin Competition
  • 1994 - “Davidoff Preis” at the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival
  • 1995 - “Reuters-Scholarship” at the Verbier Festival
  • 1998 - European Cultural Award “Pro-Europa” Europäischer Kulturpreis [5]
  • 2003 - “Yamaha” music prize


  • 1994 - Niccolò Paganini Violin Concerto No. 1, Sinfonia Varsovia, with conductor Justus Frantz
  • 1999 - Recital CD, with Alexandra Troussova, piano - works by Beethoven, Brahms, Wieniawski, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Zimbalist
  • 2003 - Recital CD, with Alexandra Troussova, piano - works by Prokofiev and Beethoven
  • 2011 - CD, Reinhard Schwarz-Schilling Violin Concerto, Staatskapelle Weimar, with conductor José Serebrier
  • 2011 - Troussov is on the DVD of pianist Yuja Wang with conductor Kurt Masur – with works by Mendelssohn
  • 2014 - CD, works by Mendelssohn
  • 2015 - CD 'Memories', with his sister Alexandra Troussova, piano
  • 2016 - CD 'Emotions', with his sister Alexandra Troussova, piano

Notable facts:

  • In 2010 he replaced Gidon Kremer at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris with the Orchestre National de France which was conducted by Daniele Gatti.
  • 1997 – 2006 Kirill Troussov played on the Antonio Stradivari violin “Le Renyier” from 1727.
  • Since 2006 Kirill Troussov plays Antonio Stradivari violin “The Brodsky”. On this violin, the violinist Adolph Brodsky premiered the violin concert written by Pyotr Ilyich Tschaikovsky on December 4, 1881.

Nicola Benedetti

Nicola Benedetti is a Scottish violinist, born in West Kilbride, North Ayrshire, Scotland. She has an Italian father and an Italian-Scottish mother. She began playing the violin at the age of four. In September 1997, she began to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School for young musicians under Baron Menuhin and Natasha Boyarskaya.

In 1998, she played solo in her school end-years concert at Wigmore Hall. Therefore she performed in London and Paris as a soloist in Bach's Double Concerto for two Violins with Alina Ibragimova.

Prizes and honors:

  • 2004, Won the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition,
  • 2007 Honorary Doctorates from Glasgow Caledonian University.
  • 2010 Honorary Doctorates from Heriot-Watt University.
  • 2011 Honorary Degrees from the University of Edinburgh.
  • 2013 Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).
  • 2013 New Year's Honours "For services to Music and charity".
  • 2015 Listed as one of BBC's 100 Women.
  • 2017 Elected an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
  • 2017 Presented with the Queen's Medal for Music, the youngest of the twelve people to receive the award (since it was founded in 2005).
  • 2019 Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the New Year Honours, "For services to Music".
  • 2020 Won the Grammy for best classical instrumental solo for Marsalis: Violin Concerto; Fiddle Dance Suite.
  • 2020 Awarded an honorary degree from the University of York.


  • Szymanowski: Violin Concerto No. 1
  • Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto
  • Vaughan Williams and Tavener
  • Fantasie
  • Tchaikovsky and Bruch: Violin Concertos
  • Italia
  • The Silver Violin
  • My First Decade
  • Homecoming – A Scottish Fantasy
  • Marsalis: Violin Concerto; Fiddle Dance Suite
  • Elgar Violin Concerto

Notable facts:

  • At age eight, she became the leader of the National Children's Orchestra of Great Britain.
  • By the age of nine, she had already passed the eight grades of musical examinations while attending the independent Wellington School, Ayr.
  • In 2012, she performed at the Last Night of the Proms.

Maxim Vengerov

Maxim Vengerov was born in 1974 in Novosibirsk, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union. He started to play the violin at the age of 5. His first teacher was Galina Turchaninova. After that, he was a pupil of Zakhar Bron for the next five years. Zakhar Bron left the Soviet Union in 1987 to become a teacher at the Royal Academy of Music in London. When Zakhar Bron started teaching at the Musikhochschule Lübeck, Maxim Vengerov followed him.

Besides playing the violin, Maxim Vengerov also plays the viola and is a conductor.

In 2010, he became the first chief conductor of the Menuhin Festival Gstaad Orchestra. Maxim Vengerov started his conducting studies with Yuri Simonov, and he graduated with a diploma of excellence from the Ippolitov-Ivanov State Musical Pedagogical Institute. He got this diploma in June 2014. After his graduation in conducting, Maxim Vengerov got an education in a further two-year program in conducting opera. He also loves working with contemporary composers.

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Prizes and honors:

  • 1984 International Karol Lipiński Competition
  • 1984 Henryk Wieniawski Young Violin Player Competition
  • 1990, International Carl Flesch Competition in London
  • Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra) (2003)
  • Gramophone Classical Music Awards (1994, 1995)
  • Classic Brit Award (2004)
  • Edison Classical Music Awards (1995, 1996, 1998, 2003, 2004)
  • Echo Music Prizes (1997, 2003)
  • World Economic Forum Crystal Award (2007)
  • Fellowships and honors from the Royal Academy of Music
  • Honorary Visiting Fellowship at Trinity College, Oxford
  • Orders of merit from Romania and the German state of Saarland


  • Beethoven: Violin sonata no. 9 ‘Kreutzer’ / Brahms: Violin sonata no. 2
  • ‘Virtuoso Vengerov’
  • Beethoven: Violin sonata no. 5 ‘früling’ / Mendelssohn: violin sonata in f major / Mozart: violin sonata k378
  • ‘The road I travel’
  • Brahms: Violin concerto & violin sonata no. 3
  • Bruch violin concerto no. 1 / Mendelssohn violin concerto
  • Rodion Shchedrin: concerto Cantible / Stravinsky: violin concerto in d / Tchaikovsky: sérénade mélancolique
  • ‘Vengerov plays Bach, Shchedrin, Ysaÿe’
  • Paganini: Violin concerto no. 1 / Franz Waxman: carmen fantasie / saint-saëns: Havanaise, introduction & Rondo Capriccioso
  • ‘Vengerov & Virtuosi’
  • Prokofiev: Violin concerto no. 1 / Shostakovich: violin concerto no. 1
  • Prokofiev: Violin concerto no. 2 / Shostakovich: violin concerto no. 2
  • Sibelius: Violin concerto / Nielsen: violin concerto
  • Tchaikovsky: Violin concerto / Glazunov: violin concerto
  • Britten: Violin Concerto / Walton: Viola Concerto
  • Lalo: Symphony Espagnol / Saint-Saëns: violin concerto no. 3 / Ravel: Tzigane
  • Phénoménal Vengerov
  • Maxim Vengerov: living the dream
  • Mozart concertos
  • Encores
  • Beethoven: Violin concerto / romances no. 1 & 2
  • Live at Wigmore hall

Notable facts:

  • Violinist Maxim Vengerov is Classic FM's first solo Artist in Residence since January 2020.
  • Maxim Vengerov performs on the 1727 "ex-Kreutzer" Stradivarius violin.
  • In 1997 Maxim Vengerov became the first classical musician as an International Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
  • Playing by Heart is an American television production on NBC about his meetings with young musicians during his masterclasses, and it was aired at the Cannes Festival 1999.
  • Maxim Vengerov took a two-year course in Baroque violin performance practice and repertoire.
  • He has premiered the violin concerto La Joie de la souffrance by Qigang Chen.
  • A Story About Maxim Vengerov
    It was the first Christmas day when I was sitting next to my sister (who plays the violin as well) and we talked about our favorite music and musicians. I haven’t thought about it in that way than…

Janine Jansen

Janine Jansen comes from a very musical family, and they lived in Soest. Her father Jan Jansen plays the organ, harpsichord, and the piano. From 1987 until May 2011 he was the organist of the Dom in Utrecht, there, her grandfather from mother's side, Maarten Kooij, who was a cantor who led church music.

Haar uncle is bass Peter Kooij. Her mother Christine Jansen-Kooij sings (soprano) and her older brothers are the harpsichord David Jansen and the cellist Maarten Jansen.

She was a student from violinist Philipp Hirshhorn at the Conservatory of Utrecht. In 1997 she made her debut with Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. She got her diploma with a high distinction, in 1998.

Since 1998 she is a member of the ensemble Spectrum Concerts Berlin under the great leader Frank Dodge.

Janine Jansen is a member of van The Academy of Arts since its founding in 2014.


  • 1988 and 1990: first prize at the Iordens Violin Days in The Hague.
  • 1993: Third Prize at the National Violin Competition Oskar Back.
  • 2003: Dutch Music Prize
  • 2007: NDR Musikpreis
  • 2008: VSCD Classical Music Prize in the Individual Performance category
  • 2008: Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist Music Award
  • 2012: Concertgebouw Prize
  • 2018: Johannes Vermeerprijs, the Dutch state prize for the arts


  • Vivaldi: The Four Seasons [Blu-ray Audio] by Janine Jansen
  • Art Of Janine Jansen
  • Janine Jansen: Concertos & Romance
  • Bach Concertos
  • Sheherazade - An Oriental Night with the Berliner Philharmoniker - Waldbuhne Berlin
  • Vivaldi: The Four Seasons - Janine Jansen
  • Beau Soir
  • Janine Jansen
  • Bach: Inventions And Partita
  • Shostakovich: Piano Quintet, Piano Trio No.1, 5 Pieces
  • Beethoven And Britten Concertos
  • Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto
  • Schoenberg: Verklarte Nacht, Op. 4 for String Sextet & Schubert
  • 4 Songs of Solitude / Variations / Twilight Music
  • Schubert & Schoenberg
  • Vivaldi: The Four Seasons (SHM-CD)
  • Brahms Bartok 1
  • Janine Jansen - Prokofiev: Violin Concertos No.2
  • Portret Van

Notable facts:

  • Janine Jansen plays the Stradivarius violin 'Rivaz-Baron Gutmann' from 1707
  • She has her own Internationaal Kamermuziek Festival in Utrecht
  • In 2003 got a contract with Decca, which was her debut CD, a scoop for a Dutch solo musician.
  • In 2005 she opened the BBC's First Night of the Proms in Royal Albert Hall in London.
  • In the season of 2017/2018 was Janine Jansen the artist-in-residence in de Carnegie Hall in New York.
  • In the Summer of 2019, she started teaching to a small class of three students in Sion (Switzerland).
  • In 2010 Paul Cohen made the film documentary, called 'Janine'.
  • In 2012 Janine Jansen played 'Summer' 1945, the soundtrack for the movie Süskind, composed by Bob Zimmerman and Nando Eweg.
  • In 2015 she played the soundtrack of the movie, from the book with the same title as the movie, Publieke Werken.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Agnes Laurens


Agnes Laurens (author) from The Netherlands on December 09, 2020:

Thanks. Great I could learn you, new violinists you can listen to. Happy listening to them.

Agnes Laurens (author) from The Netherlands on December 09, 2020:

About the Stradivarius: they are expensive, some are on loan, but I consider writing about it too.

Agnes Laurens (author) from The Netherlands on December 09, 2020:

Thank you very much. I couldn't choose as well. That is why I chose them all, but there are so many more talents out there, that I might consider doing another one.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on December 08, 2020:

The music is lovely. Thank you for sharing the videos and the information. You've introduced me to some violinists that I've never heard of before.

FlourishAnyway from USA on December 08, 2020:

What beautiful music, and with all of the talent here I couldn't choose. I wish more children of all types were exposed to violin at early ages. The impact could be transformative. I wonder how the last violinist came to regularly play a Stradivarius? Aren't they terribly expensive, or is it loaned?

Agnes Laurens (author) from The Netherlands on December 08, 2020:

Thank you very much. Very good to hear that you loved the information.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on December 08, 2020:

This article has a wealth of good information. I thought each of the vdeos were beautiful also. It was almost impossible to choose one. I never knew all those facts that you included in your article, which made it very interesting.

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