The 5th and final concert in our 104th season sees us return to the country that began our season - Russia. This time, we travel back in time to 1941 and the Second World War's Siege of Leningrad. Prior to this, we are treated to the famous and beautiful Piano Concerto No. 1 by Tchaikovsky, played by Alexandra Dariescu.
As always, please join Steve Migden from 18:40 - 19:10 for his informative pre-concert talk in the concert hall.
For bookings for individual concerts please telephone MSO Ticket Secretary Alan Veal on 07817 429143
For bookings by credit card please contact the box office at Maidstone Leisure Centre on 0845 155 22 77
For the first time, MSO can now offer online bookings via Ticketsource, a safe, quick and easy way to buy online 24/7. To buy tickets, follow this link: https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/date/114903
Selected as one of Forbes Magazine’s ’30 under 30’ Alexandra Dariescu is an outstanding ambassador for classical music. In 2013 Alexandra gave her debut at the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and became the first ever Romanian female pianist to perform in this prestigious hall. Alexandra won the Women of the Future Award in the Arts and Culture category in 2013 and has released two CDs on Champs Hill Records to critical acclaim.
In the 2013/14 season Alexandra makes her debut with the Hallé Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia and the KwaZulu Natal Philharmonic Orchestra in South Africa and returns to perform with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Meklenburgische Staatskapelle Schwerin in Germany. Last season, Alexandra performed with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, BBC Symphony Orchestra, made her debut at the Royal Festival Hall in London and at the George Enescu Festival in Bucharest.
Named BBC Music Magazine ‘Rising Star’, Alexandra Dariescu made her debut at the Carnegie Hall in New York, where she joined András Schiff during his “Perspectives” residency. Selected by Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) in 2008, Alexandra was a Laureate at the Verbier Festival Academy in Switzerland where she won the Verbier CUBS Prize. She went on to win the Guildhall Wigmore Prize and the Romanian Ambassador‘s award for her outstanding contribution to promoting Romania’s image in the UK, as well as the Prix Maurice Ravel in France. Alexandra is the first pianist to be mentored by Imogen Cooper through the Royal Philharmonic Society/YCAT Philip Langridge Mentoring Scheme.
The Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23 was composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky between November 1874 and February 1875. It was revised in the summer of 1879 and again in December 1888. The first version received heavy criticism from Nikolai Rubinstein, Tchaikovsky's desired pianist. Rubinstein later repudiated his previous accusations and became a fervent champion of the work. It is one of the most popular of Tchaikovsky's compositions and among the best known of all piano concertos.
Initially dedicated to the life and deeds of Vladimir Lenin, Shostakovich decided instead to dedicate the 7th symphony to the city of Leningrad on its completion in December 1941. The work remains one of Shostakovich's best-known compositions.
The piece soon became very popular in both the Soviet Union and the West as a symbol of resistance to Nazi totalitarianism and militarism. It is still regarded as the major musical testament of the estimated 25 million Soviet citizens who lost their lives in World War II. The symphony is played frequently at the Leningrad Cemetery, where half a million victims of the 900-day Siege of Leningrad are buried. As a condemnation of the German invasion of the Soviet Union, the work is particularly representative of the political responsibilities that Shostakovich felt he had for the state, regardless of the conflicts and criticisms he faced throughout his career with Soviet censors and Joseph Stalin.