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Musical bridges between Cyprus and Russia

The Cyprus Symphony Orchestra will present three concerts in Paphos, Limassol and Nicosia next week, within a special collaboration between Cyprus and Russia.

The concerts, under the name Musical Synergies, Cyprus – Russia, will be conducted by Yiorgos Kountouris and performed by soloist Vadim Palmov on the piano, together with the orchestra. The programme includes works by Chopin and Shchedrin.

The concerts will include one of the many waltzes by Chopin, as well as his Piano concerto no.2, the first one he wrote, in 1830 which abounds with sensual ornamentation, bewitching harmonies, and unmistakable references to Polish folk music. As for Shchedrin’s Carmen suite, this came into existence in a rather roundabout fashion after the composer was asked for a new ballet featuring Prosper Merimee’s fiery heroine. Shchedrin however found it impossible to think of the story without Bizet’s famous tunes going through his head, so in the end he decided to exploit the original opera, describing the process as “a creative meeting of minds”. But this was the Soviet Union in the late 60s, and after the first performance it was banned by the authorities as “insulting to Bizet’s masterpiece”. It took Shostakovich’s intervention to get the ballet back on the approved list, and it’s since become Shchedrin’s best-known work.

Musical Synergies, Cyprus – Russia
Piano concert by Vadim Palmov and the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra. October 12. St. Paul’s Gymnasium, Paphos. 8.30pm. €12/7/5/3. Tel: 22-463144
October 13. Rialto theatre, Limassol
October 14. Russian Cultural Centre, 16 Alassias Street, Nicosia

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