On Air Now
Classic FM Drive with John Brunning 4pm - 7pm
Celebrating an incredible ten years in the business, violin star Nicola Benedetti takes us on a personal journey through the musical highlights of her career.
Setting off at a rollicking pace, Nicola tackles Vivaldi's virtuosic concerto accompanied by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. You might think you know the tune well, but Nicola's energetic rendition brings an unusual freshness to this Baroque masterpiece. Picture: Decca/Rich Hardcastle
Making the most of Vaughan Williams' soaring violin tune, Nicola comes into her own in this stunning rendition of the composer's most famous piece. She first recorded it on her Fantasie album in 2009
It's another well-known violin favourite, this time, from Johnannes Brahms. Expect a sprightly duet between Nicola's violin and the reedy tones of accordionist Ksenija Sidorova.
Another highlight of Nicola's 2009 Fantasie album, this transcendental music is made all the more beautiful by its simplicity. Nicola caresses the long violin notes over the top of the peaceful circling piano accompaniment, creating an achingly beautiful rendition of Pärt's minimalist masterpiece
There's something haunting about Chopin's music when it's played on the violin. Despite being a piano piece originally, this Nocturne comes into its own when brought to life through Benedetti's unmistakable tones.
After hearing the premiere of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto, music critic Eduard Hanslick said: "The violin was not played but beaten black and blue." It's a fair comment for this fiendish concerto, which serves as a perfect vehicle for demonstrating Benedetti's virtuosic talent.
Massenet certainly knows how to write a great violin tune. And with the gorgeous swelling strings from the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Daniel Harding, this is a perfect serving of decadent Romantic music.
So popular is Monti's take on this Hungarian folk song that it's made its way onto a track by Lady Gaga. It sounds somewhat more traditional in this recording by Benedetti and her fellow instrumentalists, but its hard to ignore the music's infectious energy and cheery tune.
Another moment of calm nestled amongst the more energetic pieces, it's easy to see why Bruch's violin concerto is such a well-loved piece. The second movement, in particular, is a fine example of tender Romantic violin writing at its best.
A fantastic collaboration between Benedetti and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, capturing this timeless soundtrack on her The Silver Violin album. Full of indulgent, tug-on-your-heart-strings tunes, this music harks back to the Romantic era - despite being written in 2004.
Benedetti captures the pathos and drama in John Williams' famous violin solo with this tender rendition. She's following in some pretty impressive musical footsteps: the original soundtrack was performed by violin legend Itzhak Perlman.
The Benedetti Trio make an appearance on the album, along with accordionist Ksenija Sidorova. It's a track bursting with sultry Argentinian spirit, as the violin, cello, accordion and piano pass the tune between each other.