As part of its Cyprus Artists Series, the Pharos Arts Foundation presents the inaugural concert of the Acamandis Piano Trio – a newly formed trio for piano, violin and cello, comprising three of the most talented and active musicians in Cyprus. Consisting of Yiannis Georgiou (piano), Sorin Alexandru Horlea (violin) and Jakub Otčenášek (cello), the Acamandis Piano Trio will perform a programme of the rarely performed first trios of Rachmaninov, Shostakovich and Debussy, written while the composers were still students, in their late teens. The concert will take place on Wednesday 29 November 2017, at The Shoe Factory, Nicosia at 8:30pm.
ABOUT THE PROGRAMME:
Rachmaninov was still a student when, at the age of 19, wrote his first Trio Élégiaque in G minor – a concise, single-movement work not apparently meant to memorialise anyone in particular, even though it was most probably inspired by Tchaikovsky’s Piano Trio, composed ten years earlier in memory of Nikolay Rubinstein. The fingerprints which would pervade most of Rachmaninov’s mature works are all concentrated in this work: sumptuous melodies, rich Romantic harmonies, precise rhythms, and massive chordal sonorities for the piano, which occupies a leading place throughout. The Trio was not published until 1947, four years after Rachmaninov's death.
When Shostakovich completed his First Piano Trio in C minor, he was only 17 years old and madly in love with a girl called Tatyana Glivenko. The first fruit of that love was this passionate, single-movement work, which was originally entitled Poème. The Trio strongly recalls the influence of Scriabin and Rachmaninov, and it is perhaps the most romantic work Shostakovich had ever composed, although it clearly reveals several of his more mature traits such as structural complexity, harmonic ambiguity, and extreme contrasts between irony, hope and despair.
Debussy was 18 years old when he composed his Piano Trio in G major. The work was written while the composer, along with other students of the Paris Conservatoire, spent the summer of 1880 at Villa Oppenheim in Florence, as the guest musicians of Madame von Meck – the famous benefactress and close friend of Tchaikovsky. For many years the work was thought to be lost or destroyed by the composer. It was never performed during Debussy’s lifetime and it was not published until 1986 after the manuscript was found in 1982 and severe reconstruction had to be made. Undeniably charming and graceful, the Trio does not nevertheless reflect Debussy’s later, purely French style, and it rather bears the influence of Franck and Schumann – his favourite composers at the time.
ACAMANDIS PIANO TRIO
The formation of the Acamandis Piano Trio is the result of its members’ mutual passion for chamber music and their keen interest in the exploration and performance of the neglected and rarely performed repertoire for piano trio. The three musicians comprising the Acamandis Piano Trio are highly esteemed soloists, actively pursuing careers in Cyprus and abroad. The Trio’s name, Acamandis, is inspired by one of the early names of Cyprus, which is attributed to Theseus’ son Acamandas, who visited Cyprus after the Trojan war to found a city in the Akamas peninsula.
Pianist Yiannis Georgiou was born in London. He spent his childhood in both Cyprus and in England where he attended the Royal College of Music Junior Department. He studied at Trinity College of Music in London, with Alexander Ardakov and John Bingham, where he received numerous competition prizes and graduated with the DipTCL Performer’s Diploma. He continued his studies in Moscow, at the Tchaikovsky Conservatoire, initially with Professor Valery Kastelsky, a student of Heinrich Neuhaus, and finally with Pavel Nersessian, He graduated with the Aspirant Diploma. Yiannis Georgiou is the only Cypriot Pianist to have received this award. Yiannis has performed as a soloist in the UK, Greece, Cyprus, Spain, Switzerland and Germany. Yiannis Georgiou has been living in Cyprus since 2004.
Violinist Sorin Alexandru Horlea was born in Bucharest and he studied with maestro Octav Savitchi at the George Enescu Music High-School, and subsequently with maestro Daniel Podlovschi at the Ciprian Porumbescu Music University. In 1997, he won the Third Prize at the George Enescu Childhood Memories Competition in Bucharest. While still at university, Sorin had performed with the George Enescu Philharmonic, the Radio Chamber Orchestra, the Philharmonia Chamber Orchestra and Bucharest Opera Orchestra. In 2000, he was appointed Assistant Concertmaster at the Lebanese National Symphony Orchestra. He moved to Cyprus in 2005, and since then he is a member of the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra and he has also been working as an associate teacher of the Cyprus Youth Orchestra. He has appeared as a soloist in concerts and recitals in Europe and Cyprus.
Cellist Jakub Otčenášek studied at the Prague Conservatory in the class of Renata Strašrybková. Between 2010 and 2012, he was appointed Principal Cellist of the Prague Conservatory Orchestra with which he had appeared in a number of important events, including the opening concert of the Prague Spring Festival under the baton of Jiří Bělohlávek. He continued his studies in Austria at the Konservatorium Wien Privatuniversität with Prof. Lilia Schulz-Bayrova. Jakub has won several prizes in competitions, including the Special Prize of "Enami-Stiftung" at the Fidelio-Wettbewerb 2014 chamber music competition in Vienna. He has appeared in concerts and recitals all over Europe and has made several recordings for the Czech Radio and the Czech National Television. Since 2016, he has been living in Cyprus, where he is the Principal Cellist of Cyprus Symphony Orchestra.