The Pharos Arts Foundation opens its Autumn 2016 season with the return visit of one of the most charismatic and renowned pianists in the world: Sergei Babayan – an artist who has been hailed for the immediacy, sensitivity and depth of his interpretations, the rare emotional intensity and bold energy of his performances and his extraordinary mastery in exploring a stylistically diverse repertoire.
Sergei Babayan is one of the most interesting new names of the great Russian piano school.
Student of such legendary musicians and teachers as Gornostayeva, Naumov, Pletnev and Vlasenko in the Moscow Conservatory, he was, however, not permitted to leave the country and be free to compete and study in the West. He was the first pianist from the former USSR who was able to compete without government sponsorship after the collapse of the system.
Immediately after his first trip outside of the USSR he won consecutive first prizes in several major international competitions. Since that time, he has had major engagements and concert tours throughout Europe, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, South America and the USA.
His repertoire is constantly growing – he has already performed in over 50 different concertos. Babayan is highly acclaimed in the mainstream repertoire, excelling in Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms and Schumann as much as the Russian heritage of Rachmaninoff, Scriabin and Prokofiev. But he is known also for his innovative programming, often including contemporary works.
For this recital the pianist will join forces with Pharos’ resident cellist, Alexander Chaushian, in a colossal programme of cello sonatas by Debussy, Shostakovich and Beethoven.
Regarded as one of the finest cellists of his generation, Chaushian has performed extensively throughout the world as a soloist with orchestras such as the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philharmonia, the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields, the London Mozart Players, The Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, The Boston Pops and The Armenian Philharmonic.
He performs regularly in festivals throughout the world and is the artistic director of the International Pharos Chamber Music Festival in Cyprus and the Yerevan Music Festival in Armenia.
After initial studies in Armenia, the cellist studied in the UK at the Menuhin School and the Guildhall School, London. He then pursued advanced studies at the Hochschule Berlin, graduating with distinction in 2005. He is a laureate prize winner of many international competitions including the 12th International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow and the ARD Competition in Germany. As an alumnus of Young Concert Artists, New York, he toured extensively in the USA.
Among the many distinguished musicians whom he has collaborated with are Yehudi Menuhin and Julia Fischer. His regular chamber music partner is Yevgeny Sudbin. Chaushian’s many concerts during recent seasons include performances in France, Italy, Switzerland, Brazil, China and Japan.
Piano and Cello recital. September 12. Shoe Factory, Nicosia. 8.30pm. €15. Tel: 96-669003