At 27 Nicola Benedetti is a seasoned musician with the world at her feet. Before the age of 12 she had performed solo for Yehudi Menuhin and not long afterwards took the spotlight in a memorial service to the great man. Her recital with Ukrainian pianist Alexei Grynyuk in the intimate Utzon Room of Sydney Opera House afforded her Australian fans a rare chance to see just what it is that has conquered the classical music world.

The London-based Scot is a radiant performer with a smile that lights up the room. The Gariel Stradivarius seems like an extension of her body. There’s a controlled precision about the way she goes about things, her eyes seem glued to her bow as she applies it to the strings, her intonation is faultlessly accurate. She plays with the minimum of fuss or show, her eyes are often closed and her face the picture of concentration. But the music moves her, literally, and she sways to it. And it moves us. On top of all that her sense of structure is impeccable. Here is a musician who sees the big picture as well has having the...