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Russian Pianist Brings Carnivals & Sonatas


Russian Pianist Brings Carnivals & Sonatas

Russian-born pianist Nikolai Demidenko, a celebrated piano virtuoso and considered a leading exponent of the Russian school of playing makes a debut performance at Expressions in Upper Hutt on Monday, 29 July at 7.30pm. His blend of technical brilliance and musical vision have earned him consistent raves since he first emerged on the international scene in the mid-1980s and it’s a substantial treat to have him play in New Zealand.

Demidenko began playing piano before the age of five, practicing on his grandfather's old, beaten-up piano. By the age of six, he was a student of Anna Kantor (Evgeny Kissin's teacher) at the Gnessin School of Music. He went on to study at the Moscow Conservatory with Dmitri Bashkirov. Demidenko reached the finals of both the 1976 Montreal Piano Competition and the 1978 International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow and these served as a final springboard to his successful international career.

His solo piano recital programme for Expressions features works by two famous composers for the piano. Schumann’s ‘Carnival Scenes from Vienna’ and ‘Carnaval’ are two of his most popular collections of descriptive pieces. These will contrast with Franz Schubert’s two Sonatas, the joyful Sonata in A major of 1819 and his dark and moving Sonata in A minor written four years later.

Nicolai Demidenko’s 2013 Australasian tour includes recitals in Adelaide and Auckland and concerto performances with orchestras of Adelaide, Auckland, Dunedin, Melbourne and Brisbane. The Expressions concert will be his only Wellington region appearance.

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