Lush and evocative music for piano and strings

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MUSIC: The Villani Piano Quartet. PHOTO/SUPPLIED.
MUSIC: The Villani Piano Quartet. PHOTO/SUPPLIED.

An exciting group of four young musicians are performing in more than five New Zealand centres as part of Chamber Music New Zealand's 2016 Encompass Series.

After years of studying and performing in Europe, including gaining their Masters in Chamber Music, Sarah Spence and Marko Pop Ristov moved to Auckland where they met playing as principals with the newly formed "Wairua Sinfonietta".

They have joined forces with established Auckland musicians Flavio Villani and Helen Bevin to create an ensemble.

Marko has his Masters in Chamber Music from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.

His piano quartet, the "Ristov Quartet" in its two-year existence performed on many festivals across Europe.

In 2010 they were invited to perform the "Rombach" piano trio by P Dusapin for the BBC Proms.

Since his arrival in New Zealand in 2013, Marko Pop Ristov is a regular player with the APO and ACO as well as section leader of "Bach Musica".

Spence has a German equivalent Master of Chamber Music from the Robert Schumann Musik Hochschule. In Manchester, she studied with the solo cellist of the Royal Danish Orchestra, Kim Bak Dinitzen and Baroque Cellist, Susan Shepherd.

Helen Bevin, originally from Dunedin, gained a Masters of Music with Distinction from Guildhall School of Music & Drama in 2011, studying under Rachel Roberts.

She then spent two years in London freelancing with such orchestras as the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra and Britten Sinfonia, touring extensively throughout Europe and China.

Flavio Villani completed a Bachelor of Piano Performance with Matteo Napoli at the Conservatory "G.Martucci" in Salerno in 2007.

In 2012 he completed a Master of Piano Performance at the University of Auckland with first class honours under the guidance of pianist Stephen De Pledge. He won the Northland Society Piano Competition in 2008, as well as first prize in the Llewelyn Piano Competition in both 2011 and 2012.

Villani has performed extensively in New Zealand and abroad including performing the Rachmaninoff Concerto No 2 with the Orchestra Filarmonica of Calabria in Italy and again with the Orchestra of CalArts in Los Angeles at the beginning of 2015.

The details
Date and time: Saturday, September 3 at 7.30pm
Venue: Concert Chamber, Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre
Tickets: $30 adult; $15 for students 18-25 years and school-age children are free if accompanied by adult ticket holder.
Presented by: Rotorua Music Federation

VILLANI PIANO QUARTET
Marko Pop Ristov (violin)
Helen Bevin (viola)
Sarah Spence (cello)
Flavio Villani (piano)

- Rotorua Daily Post

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