12 December 2017
Romanian pianist Alexandra Dariescu's personal take on Tchaikovsky’s Christmas story
One pianist’s personal take on Tchaikovsky’s Christmas story
‘Here is a pianist with something special to say,’ observed Pianist’s reviewer Marius Dawn in issue 94, listening to an arrangement of The Nutcracker played by Alexandra Dariescu. The Romanian pianist, now resident in the UK, has taken her passion for Tchaikovsky’s magical ballet to another level with a Christmas show, ‘The Nutcracker and I’.
A graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Dariescu presents the 50-minute show on 19 December at the school’s associate venue, Milton Court Concert Hall. The matinee is already sold out; tickets were still available when we last looked for the evening show at 8pm. Dariescu will then tour ‘The Nutcracker and I’ to Russia, Norway and China.
On stage will be a grand piano, played by Dariescu herself, and a ballerina behind a see-through gauze screen. Projected onto the gauze and bringing the story to life are hand-drawn digital animations, created in advance by Yeast Culture. They follow the music and engage live with the pianist and ballerina as they ‘dance’ across the screen. Here's a preview of what to expect:
Alexandra Dariescu said: ‘I believe my responsibility as a young artist is to reach out to as many people as possible and to build bridges for those new to classical music. During one of my education workshops, a 12-year-old asked me what I think of when I play. I told him I like to step into a different world by creating little stories in my mind. It wasn’t until a little later when I realised that perhaps there is a way to share some of this magic during the moment when it actually happens on stage. “The Nutcracker and I” takes one of these stories and re-imagines it in a very personal context making use of some amazing technology that has never been seen quite like this before in a piano recital.’