top of page

Ilya Gringolts wins over audiences with his highly virtuosic playing and sophisticated interpretations and is always seeking out new musical challenges. As a sought-after soloist, Ilya Gringolts devotes himself to the great orchestral repertoire as well as to contemporary and rare works; he is also interested in historical performance practices. His concert programmes include virtuosic early repertoire by Leclair and Locatelli as well as Paganini’s solo and orchestral works. New works by Peter Maxwell Davies, Christophe Bertrand, Bernhard Lang, Beat Furrer, and Michael Jarrell. and premieres by Augusta Read Thomas, Christophe Bertrand, Bernhard Lang, Beat Furrer and Michael Jarrell have been premiered by him. In the summer of 2020, Ilya Gringolts and Ilan Volkov founded the I&I Foundation for the promotion of contemporary music, which awards commissions to young composers. 

Ilya Gringolts began the 2022/23 season with Nicolas Altstaedt and Lawrence Power at the Musikfest Berlin, in celebration of Wolfgang Rihm’s 70th birthday. Further invitations see him with the Bavarian Radio Symphony, the ORF Radio-Symphony Orchestra Vienna, the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin under Andrey Boreyko, the Helsinki Philharmonic and Radio Filharmonisch Orkest under Hannes Lintu, the Oslo Philharmonic under Klaus Mäkelä and the National Symphony Orchestra Taiwan. From his instrument, he will lead the Camerata Bern at the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, and the Australian Chamber Orchestra once again on an extensive tour in  Australia.

Ilya Gringolts has performed with renowned orchestras such as the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. Recent highlights have been joint projects with the Santa Cecilia Orchestra, the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, the Wiener Symphoniker, the SWR Symphnoirochester, the Bamberger Symphoniker, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Budapest Festival Orchestra and the Orchestre National des Pays de la Loire. From his violin, he has recently conducted projects with the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra, the Camerata Bern, and Ensemble Resonanz.

For his Diapason d'Or and Gramophone Editor's Choice Award-winning recording of Locatelli's Il labirinto armonico (2021), Ilya Gringolts also led the Finnish Baroque Orchestra from the instrument. This was followed in the same year by the solo CD Ciaccona with works by Bach, Pauset, Gerhard, and Holliger, which also received the Gramophone Editor's Choice Award. His extensive discography of highly acclaimed CD productions for Deutsche Grammophon, BIS, and Hyperion, among others, also includes the critically acclaimed recording of Paganini's 24 Caprices for solo violin and the recording of the complete violin works of Stravinsky (2018), recorded with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia under Dima Slobodeniouk and awarded the Diapason d'Or.

As first violinist of the Gringolts Quartet, he has enjoyed great success at the Salzburg Festival, Lucerne Festival, Edinburgh Festival, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, and Teatro La Fenice in Venice. A highly esteemed chamber musician, Ilya Gringolts regularly collaborates with artists such as Nicolas Altstaedt, Alexander Lonquich, James Boyd, Peter Laul, Aleksandar Madzar, Christian Poltera, David Kadouch, Lawrence Power and Jörg Widmann.

After studying violin and composition with Tatiana Liberova and Zhanneta Metallidi in St. Petersburg, he attended the Juilliard School of Music, where he studied with Itzhak Perlman. He won the International Violin Competition Premio Paganini (1998) and is still the youngest winner in the competition’s history; he was also named a BBC New Generation Artist at the outset of his career. In addition to his professor position at the Zurich University of the Arts, Ilya Gringolts was appointed to the renowned Accademia Chigiana in Siena in 2021. He plays a Stradivari (1718 "ex-Prové") violin.  


2022/23 season

This biography is to be reproduced without any changes, omissions or additions, unless expressely authorised by the artist management.

"One can hardly play the violin more expressively and uncompromisingly than Gringolts."

- Süddeutsche Zeitung

"This concert was in a class of its own, a positively unforgettable experience, featuring a musician who was committed and inspired down to his bones. Ilya Gringolts' interpretations [are a testament] to his profound engagement with and deep understanding of the works, and to his unflappable, confident mastery of the instrument."

- Pizzicato 2020

"It has been proven countless times that Ilya Gringolts is one of the best violinists of his generation. A Korngold of stunning transparency, Gringolts brings, with almost ridiculous ease, a clarity of execution to even the most difficult passages."

- L´ape musicale 2019

"The Russian violinist draws from his Guarneri del Gesù a sound of such luminosity and rich timbre that it renders the [Violin concerto by Sibelius] an immense aurora borealis, to which his attentive and warm interpretation lent a shimmering quality."

- El País 2019

"To Gringolts’ dazzling assurance in Paganini’s First Violin Concerto, no mere reviewer can do justice. Surely the sports world’s equivalent of such assurance would be doing handstands on a unicycle while singing the national anthem backwards."

- The Limelight Australia 2018

"Gringolts’ playing has a character, gesture, expression and a musical language that composers can only dream of."

- Süddeutsche Zeitung 2017

bottom of page