Stanchinsky’s extraordinary talent was noticed at an early age. He was invited to study with Sergei Taneyev, a teacher of Rachmaninov, Scriabin and Medtner. Many believed Stanchinsky was destined to become a great Russian composer, however his untimely death at the age of 26 put an early end to his creative genius, Medtner dedicated his Three Pieces Op. 31 to the memory of Stanchinsky.
Scriabin’s Preludes Op.16 from “Darkness illuminated” reflect his fascination at the time with the music of Chopin, whereas his Fourth Sonata Op.30 and Two Poems Op.32 are among the highlights of Scriabin’s artistic input. Stanchinsky’s Sonata in E-flat minor pays homage to Scriabin, and is one of the forgotten jewels of twentieth century piano sonata repertoire.
Nafis Umerkulova comments: ‘Scriabin’s music has been my lifelong passion; I discovered Stanchinsky’s works some years ago and immediately fell in love with them. The music I chose for this album was written within a 17-year time span; my intention was to draw parallels between the works and to demonstrate how the style of each composer evolved over this period. Illuminating, through my vision, a creative chapter from the lives of Scriabin and Stanchinsky, I hope to connect the listener more closely with this beautiful music.’
A prize-winner of national and international competitions, Nafis Umerkulova, was the first musician from Uzbekistan to be awarded a full scholarship to study at the Purcell School as well as at the Royal Academy of Music and Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Nafis is also a recipient of the prestigious Myra Hess Award by Help Musician’s UK. She has performed in venues such as the Wigmore Hall, Purcell Room, Birmingham Symphony and Town Halls, Manchester Bridgewater Hall and Glasgow City Halls.
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