VLADIMIR SPIVAKOV, in addition to being an internationally prominent violinist and a respected guest conductor, became Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Russian National Orchestra in September 1999. A student at the Moscow Conservatory, Spivakov quickly established himself as one of Russia’s important violinists, made his U.S. debut as a soloist with the New York Philharmonic in 1975 and toured here afterwards. He launched his conducting career with a triumphant performance with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1979 at the Ravinia Festival. Mr. Spivakov has appeared worldwide as a guest conductor and continues to pursue his solo career, appearing with several major orchestras a year. In 1989, he was appointed Artistic Director of the Colmar International Festival in France, which, under his direction, has become one of Europe’s leading music festivals. He has made 20 recordings with the Moscow Virtuosi for BMG/RCA Victor Red Seal label and records as a soloist for the RCA Red Seal label.