The English conductor and violinist, Kenneth Sillito, began studying the violin at the age of 7, and at 14 was awarded a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music, where he studied with David Martin for six years. Another scholarship took him to Rome for studies with Remy Principe.
Upon his return to England, Kenneth Sillito was immediately invited to join the English Chamber Orchestra as an Associate Leader. He subsequently took over the leadership and remained until 1973, touring worldwide with the orchestra as both director and soloist. In 1971 he became a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music.
Kenneth Sillito is known world-wide as a chamber musician. In 1967 he founded the Gabrieli String Quartet and remained its leader for 20 years, making numerous recordings and establishing the Quartet's international reputation.
Kenneth Sillito is Artistic Director of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and has been director and leader (first violinist) of the Academy Chamber Ensemble since 1980.
The Academy Chamber Ensemble was formed in 1967 to perform and record larger chamber works. Under the leadership of Kenneth Sillito it has garnered international acclaim for its superlative performances and recordings. The group, which consists of principal players from the orchestra, continues to tour extensively in Europe, the Far East and North America and to make award-winning recordings for Philips Classics and Chandos Records. To celebrate the ensemble's 25th anniversary in 1993, they gave a special series of four concerts at the Wigmore Hall, performing the major chamber music of Brahms.
With the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Kenneth Sillito has toured throughout Europe, North and South America, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. He and the Academy are also regular visitors to concert halls and festivals throughout the UK.