In Thursday’s (8/27) Telegraph (London), Jasper Rees writes, “Nicola Benedetti is the closest that classical music strays to The X Factor (unless you count Paul Potts). Youthfully blessed with talent, she has profited from the accelerated advancement of television exposure. Five years ago, she won the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition and, armed with looks and frocks, was sent out on the circuit. A six-album deal with Deutsche Grammophon, a gruelling round of concerts, transatlantic stardom – it should have been everything a precocious fiddler could dream of. But something wasn’t quite right. “I decided last year that I just had to have a lot more time to develop certain aspects of my playing,” she says. … So the carousel came to a halt while Benedetti went to study with two new teachers, both Eastern Europeans based in Vienna, and took the time to learn some new repertoire. … Having hurled herself back into the fray, recently performing with the LPO, the RPO and the Philharmonia, Benedetti feels that she is a much better violinist than before her self-imposed break.”

Posted August 28, 2009