Saida Bar-Lev grew up in Switzerland and began studying the violin at the age of 8 with Margarita Karafilova.
At 14 she entered the Lausanne Conservatory, where she studied with Christine Sorensen. A year later she joined the violin class of Prof. Tibor Varga, and performed with him in several chamber concerts at his summer festival in Switzerland. In 1988, she won the First Prize at the Jeunesse Musicale Competition in Lausanne.
She has appeared as soloist with orchestras in Switzerland, including the Swiss Italian Radio Orchestra and the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra. In 1990, she settled in Israel, where she studied with Chaim Taub.
She joined the First Violin section of the Israel Philharmonic in the 1990-91 season. In Israel she has appeared as soloist with the Ramat Gan Chamber Orchestra and the Tel Aviv University Orchestra and has appeared in chamber concerts with members of the Israel Philharmonic in Israel and abroad.
She has also appeared in many recitals in Switzerland and Germany with her father, pianist Assaf Bar-Lev.