Esther Yoo | Biography


Esther Yoo first came to international attention as one of the youngest ever prizewinners both at the International Sibelius Violin Competition and the Queen Elisabeth Competition – and subsequently developed that reputation as a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist during 2014–2016, culminating in an acclaimed first performance at the BBC Proms.
She now tours and performs with many of the world’s leading orchestras and conductors, as well as in recital, throughout Europe, South America, North America and Asia – including notable debuts in London (Wigmore Hall and Royal Festival Hall), New York (Lincoln Center) and Seoul (Seoul Arts Center). She is also active as a chamber musician, including with the Z.E.N. Trio alongside fellow BBC NGAs Zhang Zuo and Narek Hakhnazaryan.
Her journey as a recording artist began in 2015 with the release by DGG of her debut album of Sibelius and Glazunov violin concertos and shorter works. This album of works by Tchaikovsky represents her second recording collaboration with the Philharmonia Orchestra and Vladimir Ashkenazy, with whom she has also undertaken several international tours.
Born and raised in the U.S. and then Europe, Esther began playing the violin at the age of 4 and made her concerto debut aged 8. In 2006, she was given First Prize in the Junior Section of the International Henryk Wieniawski Violin Competition and also the European Union Award for Music Art for Youth. Esther plays the 1704 “Prince Obolensky” Stradivarius, generously lent to her by a private collector.