'Ivo’s tone on his 1787 Gagliano violin....is of an irresistible sweetness in lyrical passages, and it dances and sparkles in the virtuosic passagework' Fanfare, 2020. Review: Mendelssohn Concerti on Meridian Records
The violinist Ivo Stankov has become one of Bulgaria’s leading and most versatile artists. He is equally at home as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician and educator.
Ivo graduated from the Royal Academy of Music where he studied with Erich Gruenberg and received coaching by members of the Amadeus Quartet.
Ivo has appeared on several TV channels and was featured in one of the documentary series Very Important Bulgarians by Bloomberg TV. He was awarded the Silver Medal by the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Gold Medal Boris Hristov and the Golden Sign Medal of King Simeon by the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture.
Since settling in the UK, Ivo has become an active proponent of his Bulgarian cultural heritage. He founded the London Festival of Bulgarian Culture and has premiered a number of works by composers such as Grammy-nominated Dobrinka Tabakova with the English Chamber Orchestra and London Mozart Players. He has performed as soloist with Camerata Royal Concertgebouw, Sofia Philharmonic, and with orchestras in Brazil, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Spain and the USA. In the UK, he has given concerto performances and chamber music recitals at the Royal Albert Hall, Barbican, Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, Glasgow Concert Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall and Wigmore Hall.
Ivo’s latest recording of Mendelssohn’s Double Concerto for violin and piano with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra received critical acclaim as one of 'dazzling virtuosity' (Classical Music Daily), and 'a disc to treasure' (MusicWeb International). His debut album of Beethoven Violin Sonatas was similarly described as 'an excellent record' and was awarded five stars by Britain’s oldest classical music magazine Musical Opinion.
As part of his diverse portfolio of artistic projects Ivo has shared a stage with Sir Cliff Richard, and has collaborated with international artists such as Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits and the late film composer and Grammy Award winner Jóhann Jóhannsson (The Theory of Everything) with whom he toured throughout Europe as first violin of the Iskra Quartet. He has performed chamber music with the Chilingirian Quartet, violinist Svetlin Roussev, pianist Ashley Wass, and cellists Guy Johnston and Stefan Popov among others.
'Ivo Stankov here plays with a rich, focused tone, impressive dexterity, and welcome combination of Romantic passion and Classical proportion ideal for Mendelssohn' Fanfare
Passionate about supporting young musicians, Ivo is increasingly in demand as a teacher and adjudicator. He is a violin professor at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and Junior Guildhall School of Music & Drama, and teaches at St. Paul’s Girls School and Whitgift School. Recent student success stories include winning Junior GSMD Lutine Prize (2021), and performing in the finals of the BBC Young Musician of the Year (2022). He has adjudicated competitions in Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, Moldova and the UK, and has given Masterclasses in Europe and the USA.
Ivo’s pedagogical publications include his violin method The Violin Tips Practice Guide which was published as a series of articles in The Strad and Music Teacher online magazines.
Ivo plays on a 1787 violin by Giuseppe & Antonio Gagliano.
Violin Tips Practice Guide: