Igor Sulyga was born in 1951 in Lviv, Ukraine (formerly the USSR) and studied there before entering the Moscow Conservatoire, where he continued to study with Fyodr Druzhinin and from where he graduated with a diploma in viola performance. He went on to study at the Moscow Gnessin Institute with Professor Berlinksy, cellist of the Borodin Quartet, where he received his Master's Diploma.
Igor Sulyga is a laureate of many international competitions, including the Belgrade International Quartet Competition (first prize) in 1971 and the Bratislava International Competition (first prize) in 1972, organized by UNESCO. He also received the first prize in the Karajan International Competition in Berlin when he was principal violist of the Moscow Conservatoire Orchestra.
A founder member of the Moscow String Quartet (together with Boris Kuschnir), Igor Sulyga worked with Dmitri Shostakovich on t he composer's late quartets. He later joined the renowned Moscow Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, under the directorship of Vladimir Spivakov; he played with this ensemble for twenty years and also played in Vladimir Spivakov's string quartet.
As both a chamber musician and as an orchestra section principal, Igor Sulyga has performed throughout the world, in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Boston Symphony Hall, the Theatre des Champs-Elysées, Paris, the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, the Musikverein, Vienna, the Royal Albert Hall, London, and the Wigmore Hall , London.
He has taken part in a number of recordings, both chamber music and orchestral, including the complete string quartets of Tchaikovsky and Borodin, for labels including Le Chant du Monde, Paris, and, in the UK, Nimbus and Wigmore Live.
Mr Sulyga teaches both viola and chamber music, and has given workshops and masterclasses at many distinguished academies, including the Musical Academy of the International Festival of Colmar, the Academia Superior de Orcesta Metropolitana in Lisbon, the Vienna Conservatoire, the Conservatoire Teresa Berganza de Madrid and the Tulane University of New Orleans. For more than a decade he has given classes in the International Course of Musical Improvement in Oviedo, Spain.