Our season of lunchtime concerts featuring performers appearing here for the first time continues with our second concert to feature a violin and piano duo. Bulgarian violinist Krassimira Jeliazkova-Jones is joined by Scottish-Polish pianist Elizabeth Mucha for a concert that will feature music by Beethoven, Clara Schumann, and Polish composer Karol Szymanowski’s transcription for violin and piano of Paganini’s Caprice No 24, which is reputed to be one of the most difficult pieces ever written for solo violin.
Our popular pop-up café will also return, so as ever St John’s will be open for an hour before the concert begins, with volunteers from the pop-up café team offering lots of home made sweet and savoury treats as well as hot and cold drinks.
The concert will begin promptly at 1pm. Admission is free, but those who are able to afford it are asked to make a donation. The suggested amount is £5.
The programme will include Beethoven’s Violin and Piano Sonata No 3, Clara Schumann’s Three Romances, and the Szymanowksi-Paganini Caprice No 24.
About Krassimira Jeliazkova-Jones:
Krassimira was born in Sofia, Bulgaria, and is a gold-medal graduate of the State Academy of Music in Sofia, where she studied with Prof. Dora Ivanova, herself a continuer of the great Russian violin tradition of the Moscow Conservatoire.
After acquiring her Master’s degree she continued studying with different world renowned professors of violin. Among these she holds in particularly high esteem the knowledge she received from Franco Gulli, Igor Bezrodni, Karen Arutunyan, the latter himself a former assistant of the great Leonid Kogan.
She has performed extensively as an orchestral player, chamber musician and as a soloist, in numerous countries such as her native Bulgaria, Egypt, Russia, France, Belgium, Holland, Spain, Turkey, Japan, Poland, Hungary and Germany, working with world renowned conductors, Pavel Kogan, Yoel Levi and Marin Alsop among others.
She spent four years in Moscow (1996 – 2000), where she was appointed as a sub-leader (second concertmaster/principal) of the Moscow State Academic Symphony Orchestra from 1998-2000 before moving to Belgium where, along with the membership in the first violin section of the Flemish Radio and Television Orchestra, she continued to perform widely as a soloist and was leader of a number of chamber orchestras.
Between 2003 and June 2008 Krassimira lived in Ankara, Turkey where besides active teaching she was regularly asked to perform in programmes of the Bilkent Symphony Orchestra while continuing with solo recitals. She also contributed her talent to numerous community projects. Together with her Turkish partner-pianist, Prof. Yesim Alkaya, she made numerous recordings for Turkish Radio.
Between 2008 and 2012 she lived in Warsaw, Poland, where, along with her usual solo performing activities she led a string quartet. She made an important contribution to the Mendelssohn’s Festival that marked the bi-centenary of his birth, with highlights such as his famous Octet (at the leading position) and recording of his F Minor Violin Sonata.
Her next base was Berlin, Germany, where she continued with extensive performing, including on the Berliner Philharmonie stage, as a soloist as well as within a variety of chamber music formations.
Krassimira gave many recitals with several British pianists and particularly with London-based Elizabeth Mucha; their cooperation began while they were both living in Warsaw.
After many years of moving countries and following the return home of her British husband journalist, she moved to the UK in September 2015 where she settled. Since then she has been active as a versatile performer, giving recitals in Central London’s St. Martin in the Fields, Guildford, Wimbledon, Brighton, Cambridge and Berlin, and being increasingly involved in larger projects in Cambridge and London.
About Elizabeth Mucha:
Scottish-Polish pianist Elizabeth Mucha has performed throughout Europe, the Americas, and the Far East as a critically acclaimed song accompanist, chamber musician and solo pianist.
She has broadcast for the BBC in Scotland and Northern Ireland as well as other classical music stations in Holland, Brazil, Canada, and the Philippines. For the British Council, she toured the Philippines with soprano Miranda Keys and flautist Kirsten Spratt with whom she released five CDs of flute/piano repertoire. She has appeared at music festivals in Brazil, Slovenia and in Poland. In the UK she took part in the Hull City of Culture celebrations and, most recently, at Late Music in York.
While living in Holland she played for the prestigious “Friends of the Lied” organisation, co-founded the vocal group “Songcircle”, and was involved in a multi-media project to commemorate the life and works of the Dutch painter Piet Mondriaan.
In the UK, she worked at the Britten-Pears school and performed with the experimental music theatre group “Opera Circus”. In 2018 she celebrated a 10-year partnership with Bulgarian violinist Krassimira Jeliazkova with a series of concerts in and around London.
In addition to her playing, Elizabeth has devised several programmes including scripts for the Verdi celebration concerts in 2001 for Singapore Lyric Opera; Music Travels (solo programme) and a multidisciplinary programme, “Art Sung – Alma Mahler”, which played to great acclaim at Wilton’s Music Hall in London, at the Wandsworth Arts Fringe and at the London Song Festival in 2018. Art Sung- Clara Schumann is her second production in the Art Sung series.