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Tue, May 20


Merkin Concert Hall

GetClassical presents: Vassily Primakov and Natalia Lavrova Piano Duo at Merkin Hall


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GetClassical presents: Vassily Primakov and Natalia Lavrova Piano Duo at Merkin Hall
GetClassical presents: Vassily Primakov and Natalia Lavrova Piano Duo at Merkin Hall

Time & Location

May 20, 2014, 7:00 PM

Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W 67th St, New York, NY 10036, USA

About the Event

Pianists Natalia Lavrova & Vassily Primakov to Release Two CDs on LP Classics: All-Rachmaninoff April 1st & All-Braam van Eeden May 15th

The compelling young Lavrova/Primakov Duo will present a program of Scriabin, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff, as well as the New York premiere of a Sonata for Two Pianos by Lowell Liebermann, and a world premiere commissioned by the Duo from emerging South African composer Braam van Eeden at Merkin Hall on Tuesday evening, May 20, 2014, at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets at $35 for reserved seating can be obtained by visiting or by phoning (212) 501- 3330. $30 tickets for seniors and $15 student tickets (with I.D.) can be purchased directly at the box office, Merkin Concert Hall, Kaufman Music Center, 127 West 67th Street, New York City. This concert is presented by GetClassical. The GetClassical series aims to bring classical music into the new York nightlife scene, reinvigorating a long-lost art and ambiance that's returning as a part of our zeitgeist. Featuring vigilantly curated guest artists, GetClassical aims to bring new and avid classical consumers together in a salon-like setting, away from the traditional concert venue. It hopes to create a unique atmosphere nurtured by great music that inspires the best in us.

The complete program follows:

Scriabin: Fantasy in A Minor, Op. Posth.

Lowell Liebermann: Sonata for Two Pianos, Op.117* (2011) New York Premiere

Liszt: Concerto Pathetique in E minor


Braam van Eeden: Sonata "Supreme" For Two Pianos in F Minor, EWV87 World Premiere

Rachmaninoff: Suite No.2 for Two Pianos Op.17

In the few short years since the Lavrova/Primakov Duo was established—in 2010—the duo has performed extensively throughout the United States and has attracted superlative reviews. In 2011 the Duo established its own record label, LP Classics, an initiative committed to unearthing lost historical gems, presenting never-before released recordings, and enriching the discographies of emerging stars of a new generation. Reviewing the Duo’s first release, Anton Arensky’s Suites for Two Pianos, veteran Fanfare critic Jerry Dubins wrote:

”Lavrova and Primakov take turns playing the Piano I and Piano II parts, but

technically and tonally they are so well-matched, you wouldn’t know who was on first and who was on second unless you read

the disc’s track listing. ... Strongly recommended then for a dazzling display of two-piano works by two phenomenal pianists.

And James Harrington, reviewing the Arensky disc for American Record Guide, commented: “Lavrova and Primakov capture the

essence of each suite and, through their considerable talents, share with us some of the most enjoyable almost unknown music

I’ve heard in quite a while.”

Preceding the May 20th recital, the Duo will be releasing two recordings on LP Classics : Suites Nos. 1 and 2 and the Symphonic Dances by Rachmaninoff on April 1st, 2014 and, on May 15th, 2014, an all-Braam van Eeden disc, including two Sonatas, one written for Ms. Lavrova and one for Mr. Primakov as well as the Sonata "Supreme" For Two Pianos in F Minor, EWV87.

Natalia Lavrova has deftly combined an international performing career as piano soloist with a variety of pedagogical and arts administrative positions. Her riveting performances enhanced by her beguiling charm on the platform as well as her impeccable technical grounding have won the hearts of audiences around the world.

Solo and orchestral performances have taken Ms. Lavrova throughout her native Russia to Canada, France, Hungary, Italy, United Kingdom, South Africa, and the United States, to include notable New York venues such as Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and Steinway Hall. Ms. Lavrova has captured top prizes at the New Orleans, Isabel Scionti, Frinna Auerbach, Heidi Hermanns, Music Academy of the West, Silver Lake, and Senigallia International Piano Competitions. Upon her debut at the Leeds International Piano Competition, Ms. Lavrova was the youngest performer of 1996 admitted to the quarterfinal round. In her repertoire, she has over 30 concertos and extensive solo recital programs, as well as a substantial chamber music repertoire, including an ongoing partnership with her duo partner, pianist, Vassily Primakov. Her repertoire includes works of Arensky, Clementi, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Chopin, Brahms, Schubert, Liszt, Debussy, Milhaud, Godowsky, Saint-Saens, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff, Shostakovich, Poulenc, Prokofiev, Corigliano, Liebermann, Barber, van Eeden and many others.

Born in Moscow, Ms. Lavrova entered the prestigious preparatory division of the Moscow Conservatory at the age of five and was subsequently accepted by The Juilliard School Pre-College Division as a pupil in the studio of Herbert Stessin. Ms. Lavrova went on to earn her Bachelor of Music and Masters of Music degrees at Juilliard, under the tutelage of Jerome Lowenthal. Ms. Lavrova is the founder and president of a very successful private school, Music School of New York City. She is a Yamaha Artist in Education.

In recent years, Vassily Primakov has been hailed as a pianist of world class importance. In the words of Gramophone, "Primakov's empathy with Chopin's spirit could hardly be more complete," and the American Record Guide stated: "Since Gilels, how many pianists have the right touch? In Chopin, no one currently playing sounds as good as this! This is a great Chopin pianist." Music Web-International called Primakov's Chopin concertos CD "one of the great Chopin recordings of recent times. These are performances of extraordinary power and beauty." In 1999, as a teen-aged prizewinner of the Cleveland International Piano Competition, Primakov was praised by veteran music critic Donald Rosenberg in the Cleveland’s Plain Dealer: "How many pianists can make a line sing as the Moscow native did on this occasion? Every poignant phrase took ethereal wing. Elsewhere the music soared with all of the turbulence and poetic vibrancy it possesses. We will be hearing much from this remarkable musician."

His first piano studies were with his mother, Marina Primakova. He entered Moscow's Central Special Music School at the age of eleven as a pupil of Vera Gornostaeva, and at 17 came to New York to pursue studies at the Juilliard School with the noted pianist, Jerome Lowenthal. At Juilliard Mr. Primakov won the William Petschek Piano Recital Award, which presented his debut recital at Alice Tully Hall, and while at Juilliard, aided by a Susan W. Rose Career Grant, he won both the Silver Medal and the Audience Prize in the 2002 Gina Bachauer International Artists Piano Competition. Later that year Primakov won First Prize in the 2002 Young Concert Artists (YCA) International Auditions. In 2007 he was named the Classical Recording Foundation's "Young Artist of the Year." In 2009, Primakov's Chopin Mazurkas recording was named "Best of the Year" by National Public Radio. BBC Music Magazine praised the first volume of Primakov's Mozart concertos: "The piano playing is of exceptional quality: refined, multi-coloured, elegant of phrase and immaculately balanced, both in itself and in relation to the effortlessly stylish orchestra. The rhythm is both shapely and dynamic, the articulation a model of subtlety. By almost every objective criterion, Vassily Primakov is a Mozartian to the manner born, fit to stand as a role model to a new generation."

Mr. Primakov has released numerous recordings for Bridge Records that include works by Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Chopin, Dvorak, Debussy, Tchaikovsky, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff, Philip Glass, Arlene Sierra, and Poul Ruders. Most recently, LP Classics released a Live in Concert album that includes works by Medtner, Schumann, Brahms's Handel Variations and Ravel's La Valse, and a Chopin Two-Disc Album of Three Sonatas, Four Ballades, and Four Scherzos. In 2012 Mr. Primakov became a Yamaha Artist.

Known in his native South Africa as a fiery and inventive composer, twenty-five year-old Braam van Eeden has already won numerous awards and honors. He is currently completing a Master’s degree in piano performance under the guidance of Professor Joseph Stanford at the University of Pretoria as well as a University of South Africa Performance Licentiate. In 2009, Braam took part in the University of South Africa Bursary Competition in Stellenbosch and received the “Best Pianist and Piano Performance in South Africa” Award. He won the prize for the most progressive student at the Philip H Moore Music Competition. In 2013 Mr. Primakov, whose masterclasses Mr. van Eeden attended, also premiered his Piano Sonata No. 5 for solo piano.

The Lavrova/Primakov Duo will be performing in concert attired costume created by the talented fashion designer
Madeline Gruen of New York City. Ms. Gruen is a 2013 graduate of the Pratt Institute whose senior collection received the “Liz Claiborne Award – Concept to Product,” funded by the Liz Claiborne and Art Ortenberg Foundation. Ms. Gruen currently creates custom gowns, suits, and bridal wear for clients out of her studio in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, as part of the
Pratt Design Incubator for entrepreneurial young designers. Her work is distinctive for its intricate embellishments,
romantic silhouettes, and inventive details.

For further information, please contact Hemsing Associates at (212) 772-1132 or e-mail #####

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