Leonidas Kavakos, © Photo: Marco Borggeve
That Greek violin virtuoso Leonidas Kavakos had a rare gift was apparent early on. Born into a family of musicians, he took up his instrument at the age of five. By 18 he was ready to make his concert debut at the 1984 Athens Festival; a year later, he became the youngest contestant to date to win the prestigious International Sibelius Competition—a turning point in the young musician’s career that brought his name to international audiences. Kavakos has recorded numerous albums and given critically acclaimed performances around the world, appearing alongside renowned ensembles such as the Berlin Philharmonic, the London Symphony Orchestra, and the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig. He is especially well known for his fine interpretations of Beethoven’s violin sonatas.