ALEXANDRA DARIESCU | piano
18 OCTOBER, 7:00PM
Demonstrating fearless curiosity and ground-breaking innovation in her work, this trailblazing British/Hungarian pianist champions lesser known composers, particularly female composers in this fascinating programme titled A Child’s Dream.
In demand as a soloist worldwide, the supremely talented Alexandra Dariescu has performed with some of the most eminent orchestras including the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de France and Oslo Philharmonic to name a few.
A Child’s Dream is connected to the 30th anniversary of Dariescu’s début concert and is a captivating anthology of pieces, some you may never have heard before, others more familiar, but all of them jewels, perfectly balanced and dear to this outstanding piano prodigy’s heart.
The recital finishes with one of the quintessential works for piano ever written – Chopin’s 24 Preludes. Their originality changed the shape of preludes as a genre forever and represent the most characteristic features of Chopin’s music – lyricism, anxiety, virtuosity, visionary intellect and struggles with mortal illness. With overwhelming erudition and purest genius we are spoilt with this masterstroke – a quintessence of the great Chopin’s style and character in less than 45 minutes.
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PROGRAMME | A CHILD’S DREAM
Alexandra Dariescu in partnership with Piano+
EMMY SCHÄFER KLEIN – No.1 The Child’s Dream (Kindes traum)
from Christmas Album Op.8 No.1
JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH/ALEXANDER SILOTI – Prelude in B minor BWV 855a
MATHILDE BILBRO – Valse
FLORENCE PRICE – The Goblin and the Mosquito
GERMAINE TAILLEFERRE – Romance
LILI BOULANGER – 3 Morceaux:
No.1 D’un Vieux Jardin
No.2 D’un Jardin Clair
AMY BEACH – No.6 Harlequin
from Children’s Carnival Op.25
MISSY MAZZOLI – A Map of Laughter
HEITOR VILLA LOBOS – No.7 O polichinelo
from A prole do bebê No.1 W140
CLARA SCHUMANN – No.2 Notturno
from Soirées musicales Op.6
LEOKADIYA KASHPEROVA – Songs without Words No.5
JAMES LEE III – Humble Birth
CARL FILTSCH – No.3 Mazurka in E♭ minor
from Premières pensées musicales Op.3
GEORGE ENESCU – No.3 Adagio
from Suite No.1 for Piano Op.3
TUDOR CIORTEA – Romanian Dance
– Interval –
FRÉDÉRIC CHOPIN – 24 Preludes Op.28
Alexandra Dariescu, creator of “The Nutcracker and I”, is a pianist for the 21st century, standing out as an original voice on gender equality in both her concerto and recital programmes, championing and premiering lesser-known works. In demand as a soloist worldwide, she has performed with eminent orchestras such as the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de France, Oslo Philharmonic and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, whilst the list of conductors she has worked with includes Adam Fischer, Cristian Măcelaru, Alain Altinoglu, Fabien Gabel, Jun Märkl, Vasily Petrenko, Ryan Bancroft, James Gaffigan and JoAnn Falletta.
In 2023/24 Dariescu opens the season for the BBC Symphony Orchestra with Sakari Oramo at the Barbican Centre. A regular guest of the George Enescu International Festival, she returns alongside pianist Jean Efflam Bavouzet and the Manchester Camerata for Mozart’s double concerto. In North America she debuts with the Indianapolis Symphony and Vancouver Symphony Orchestras, followed by her return to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra for the world premiere of James Lee III’s new piano concerto ‘Shades of Unbroken Dreams’, in honour of the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr’s “I have a Dream” speech. The concerto, written for Dariescu, is a co-commission along with the BBC Philharmonic and Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, giving the piece’s UK premiere under the baton of John Storgårds. Further highlights include her return to the Houston Symphony with Fabien Gabel and debuts with the Copenhagen Philharmonic, Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Mainz, the Trondheim and Wuppertal Symphony orchestras. This season marks the 7th running year of her successful piano recital production “The Nutcracker and I”, with presentations taking place in cities across the UK, Germany, Belgium and China.
In recent seasons Dariescu has given important premieres of unjustly neglected pieces, such as Nadia Boulanger’s Fantaisie Variée; in the US with Houston Symphony, in Norway with Oslo Philharmonic and in Finland with Turku Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2022 she made the world premiere recording of a newly discovered piano concerto (1900) by Leokadiya Kashperova with the BBC Symphony Orchestra for BBC Radio 3’s acclaimed programme ‘Composer of the Week’. Further discoveries include international performances of the recently unearthed piano concerto by George Enescu and Dora Pejačević’s Phantasie concertante.
In 2017, Dariescu took the world by storm with her successful piano recital production “The Nutcracker and I”, an original ground-breaking multimedia performance for piano solo with dance and digital animation, which has since enjoyed international acclaim and has drawn thousands of young audiences into concert halls across Europe, Australia, China, the Emirates and the US, realising Dariescu’s vision of building bridges and making classical music more accessible to the wider public.
Dariescu has released eight albums to critical acclaim, the latest disc being her Decca recording with Angela Gheorghiu. The discography includes a Trilogy of Preludes series on Champs Hill Records, as well as Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Darrell Ang (Signum Records), in addition to “The Nutcracker and I” audio book.
Dariescu has been mentored by Sir András Schiff and Dame Imogen Cooper. A Laureate at the Verbier Festival Academy, she received the UK’s Women of the Future Award in the Arts and Culture category. In 2017, Dariescu was appointed patron of Music in Lyddington and Cultural Ambassador of Romania. In spring 2018, Dariescu received the ‘Officer of the Romanian Crown’ from the Royal Family and was selected as a Young European Leader by Friends of Europe. In 2020, Dariescu received the Order ‘Cultural Merit’ in the rank of Knight by the Romanian President and became an Associated Member of the RNCM.