Zino Vinnikov (born 1943) is one of the leading representatives of the St. Petersburg violin tradition.
He studied with Professor Abram Shtern, and later at the Leningrad (St. Petersburg) State Conservatoire with Professors Mikhail Waiman and Benjamin Sher, himself a pupil of the legendary Leopold Auer. While still a student, he won First Prize at the USSR National Violin Competition. He was also one of the prizewinners of the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, the Concours Reine Élisabeth in Brussels, as well as winner of the First Prize and Gold Medal at the George Enescu Competition in Bucharest. After completing his postgraduate studies, Zino Vinnikov was invited to become a Professor at the Leningrad Conservatoire. In the early years of his career, Vinnikov appeared in solo recitals and concerto performances on stages throughout the former Soviet Union and abroad. Since 1979 the artist has resided in the Netherlands and in France.
Today Zino Vinnikov is an internationally acclaimed performer with broad musical interests and an exceptionally rich repertoire. He has appeared in most European countries as well as in those of the former Soviet Union, the United States, Canada, South America, China and Japan. Vinnikov has performed under leading conductors such as Yuri Temirkanov, Evgeny Svetlanov, Alexander Dmitriev, Mariss Jansons, Neeme Järvi, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, André Previn, Alain Lombard, Hans Vonk, and Vladimir Ashkenazy. He also enjoyed an especially close partnership with Yehudi Menuhin, who confessed to being an admirer of Vinnikov’s art. Their recording of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, Sérénade mélancolique and Mélodie, with Menuhin conducting The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, received wide acclaim.
Equally a keen chamber musician, Zino Vinnikov has performed with outstanding musicians such as Philippe Hirshhorn, Mischa Maisky, Boris Pergamenschikow, Natalia Gutman, Elisso Virsaladze, Elisabeth Leonskaya and others. He has participated in many festivals including Edinburgh, Santander, Athens, St. Petersburg, Bonn, Paris, Bordeaux and London.
Zino Vinnikov has held professorships at the St. Petersburg, Rotterdam and Utrecht Conservatoires and the Benjamin Britten Academy. He is regularly invited to conduct masterclasses and serve as a jury member at international violin competitions.
In 2013 Zino Vinnikov was awarded a Knighthood in the Order of the Netherlands Lion – the country’s highest civilian order – for services to music.