Nicola Benedetti appointed director of Edinburgh International Festival
The violinist will become the festival's first Scottish and first female director in its 75-year history
Violinist Nicola Benedetti has been appointed the next festival director of the Edinburgh International Festival, a role she will take on in October. She will become the first Scottish and first female director since the festival began in 1947.
Benedetti – who won BBC Music Magazine's 2021 Personality of the Year – has become a major advocate for music education in recent years, having launched the Benedetti Foundation in 2020 to support musicians through workshops and video content. She also has a rich and vibrant career as a leading soloist, and last year formed the Benedetti Baroque Orchestra, an ensemble made up of freelance Baroque musicians. Together, they released a selection of concertos by Vivaldi, as well as Geminiani's arrangement of Corelli's La Folia.
BBC Music Magazine's columnist Richard Morrison commented on her appointment in The Times, saying, 'I don't doubt that Benedetti will bring a keen critical eye to that job, but the question is whether she can find the time to do it properly' on top of her other musical responsibilities and engagements.
Benedetti takes over from Fergus Linehan, who has held the director position for eight years. Last year, he was awarded the Edinburgh Award for his contribution to the arts and cultural heritage of the Scottish capital.
Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.