Two of the most active Romanian musicians and cultural animators, pianist Diana Ionescu and violinist and composer Vlad Maistorovici, make a comeback on our virtual musical stage with a recital featuring two greats of European repertoire, Camille Saint-Saëns and Igor Stravinsky.
C. Saint-Saëns - Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso
I. Stravinsky - Pieces for violin and piano
Romanian pianist Diana Ionescu has established a reputation for her "commanding pianism and mature musicianship" (Musical Pointers) in interpretations of works ranging from Baroc keyboard composers such as Scarlatti and Bach, through the classical purity of Mozart, Schubert, or Mendelssohn, to the romantic and modern grandeur of Schumann, Rachmaninoff, Debussy or Prokofiev. Winner of the Gold Medal of the George Enescu International Piano Competition, and the last Romanian pianist to receive the coveted top award, Diana Ionescu enjoys an international musical activity as a soloist, chamber musician, musical educator and festival director. She has been distinguished with the Alexis Weisenberg Prize and EWLE Award for Best Live Recording, second prize at the Missouri Southern International Piano Competition USA and the Lory Wallfisch International Competition Ploieşti Romania, the Glass Seller’s Trophy and First Prize of the Romantic Piano Competition, London, as well as with the Ambassador Diploma for services brought to Romanian culture abroad. Born in Câmpina, Romania, into a musical family, Diana was brought up in the sonic philosophy of the Madrigal Choir, founded and directed by her uncle, Marin Constantin. At 7 she started studying the piano with Sanda Bobescu, spending weekends in Sinaia and being exposed to the musical personality of violinist and composer Constantin Bobescu. After graduating the George Enescu Music School, where she studied piano with Olga Szell, she was admitted to the class of Dan Grigore at the Bucharest National University of Music, where she also studied with Steluța Radu, Sandu Sandrin and Dinu Ciocan. In 2003 she moved to the UK, to continue her studies with Ronan O’Hora, Joan Havill and Marc Racz at Birmingham Conservatoire and Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She perfected her art with Viktor Merzhanov at the Tchaikovsky Conservatoire in Moscow, Alexis Weissenberg în Engelberg, Dmitri Bashkirov at Chapelle Reine Elisabeth in Brussels and in Madrid, and Richard Goode in New York.
"As bandleader, Vlad Maistorovici cuts a kind of Stephane-Grappelli-meets-Brian-May figure" (Wales Arts Review), while his compositions "strike a different note" (The Daily Telegraph). Romanian violinist-composer-director Vlad Maistorovici performs internationally in repertoire ranging from Bach to Turnage, through Enescu and Queen. His music is championed by world-class ensembles and artists. As concert violinist, Vlad Maistorovici's performances display "technical assuredness, balanced by interpretative willingness to push boundaries that can, and often does make sparks fly" (Musicweb International on his Wigmore Hall debut). Always faithful to the concertos and chamber music of the great composers of the past, Maistorovici does not stop at performing the established repertoire at major venues and festivals, in the company of famed orchestras. He has inspired, as a soloist or as part of the London-based Mercury Quartet, over 20 new works by composers such as Mark Anthony Turnage (who composed a Romanian Rhapsody violin concerto dedicated to Maistorovici), Jonathan Cole, Mark Simpson, Steven Daverson, Charlotte Bray, Edmund Finnis, Laurent Durupt, Diana Rotaru, Dan Dediu. With the same ensemble he has explored contemporary classical music improvisation in "Mercury Acoustic," released by Gabriel Prokofiev's label, NonClassical. Maistorovici plays on and is the current custodian of a 1751 Nicolò Gagliano violin, kindly provided by the Rațiu Family Charitable Foundation. In 2015 he has founded vibrate!festival in the city of Brașov, Transylvania, an event that explores ways of refreshing the listening experience of classical music. Bringing together world-class innovative artists from all across Europe, the festival reaches out to a wide audiences through eclectic repertoire and cross-discipline projects in alternative spaces. In 2020 the festival presented "Beethoven Unlimited," the complete Beethoven Symphonies in historic chamber arrangements performed by Maistorovici in the company of Romanian musicians in encounters with visual artists, choreographers, musicologists and audiences as far as USA, UK and New Zealand through the means of technology.