GREENSBORO – Eastern Music Festival (EMF), Greensboro’s nationally recognized classical music festival and summer educational program, announces a program change for July 30 concert due to the devastating passing of world-renowned classical pianist Alexander Toradze. Long-time EMF faculty member and distinguished pianist Marika Bournaki will play in his stead.
Named “the Celine Dion of classical”, world class Canadian pianist Marika Bournaki will make her debut with the Eastern Festival Orchestra this season. “I am honored to be making my debut with the Eastern Festival Orchestra on July 30th,” Marika says. “It was with a heavy heart that I accepted this substitution for the late Alexander Toradze, the great Georgian pianist who passed away all too soon. Meeting him and hearing him perform was an experience I was looking forward to this summer. I have been a longtime fan of his powerful interpretations of the great 20th century Russian piano repertoire.”
Marika holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The Juilliard School, where her principal teachers were Yoheved Kaplinsky and Matti Raekallio. She is a visiting Professor of Piano Performance and Pedagogy at Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, VA, and serves on the piano faculty of the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, NC, “This coming summer will mark my 7th year on faculty at EMF. Summers in Greensboro have become a tradition, and performing for the warm EMF audiences a delight,” she says. She is a member of the Mile End Trio with EMF faculty members Julian Schwarz and Jeff Multer, as well as Piano Six’s new generation, a touring ensemble that brings classical musical to remote and underserved Canadian communities.
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“I will be performing the emblematic Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, which incorporates multiple Ukrainian folk melodies throughout. I am humbled by the invitation of Maestro Schwarz to perform the final festival concert in Dana Auditorium. I look forward to seeing many friends and colleagues in the audience.”
Complete program details for the Eastern Music Festival that runs June 25 – July 30 are available at easternmusicfestival.org/calendar.