LUNCH WITH THE FT: Nicola Benedetti — violinist, child prodigy and musical mentor
‘Because I’ve never done anything else since I was 16, I’ve never fully seen from another perspective how irregular every single part of my life is’
Nicola Benedetti scans the menu, unsure of what to order. The Scottish violinist had some trouble choosing a venue for our lunch, eventually settling on a Vietnamese restaurant close to her west London home. But it doesn’t feel like her local. “I wouldn’t say I’m integrated into my surroundings like I would be if I was here all the time,” she says. “I’m away so much.”
From her many album covers, I am used to seeing Benedetti — or Nicky, as she’s known to friends and colleagues — in sleeveless ball gowns, her long hair loose over one shoulder. Today, she is in jeans and a black V-neck. She flew in from Frankfurt this morning, having just played two concerts there. But if she’s tired, her face betrays no sign of it.