Above the music of the first of Brahms’ Intermezzi Op. 117 of 1892, he quotes the opening of Johann Gottfried Herder’s German setting of Lady Anne Bothwell’s Lament; he described the third, in C-sharp Minor, which allegedly was inspired by Henry Longfellow’s Victor Galbraith, as ‘the lullaby of all my sorrows’. Clara Schumann, arguably their covert dedicatee, confided to her diary that these compositions are ‘a true source of enjoyment, everything, poetry, passion, rapture, intimacy, full of the most marvellous effects … in these pieces at least I feel musical life stir once again in my soul.’
Tchaikovsky was working on Swan Lake, when he accepted a commission in 1875 from Nikolay Bernard, publisher of music periodical Nouvellist to compose twelve miniatures, each describing a different month of the year. The Seasons have become Tchaikovsky’s best-known piano works – Troika (November) was a favourite encore of Rachmaninoff's.
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Pianist Nareh Arghamanyan has received critical acclaim for her ‘sensual narrative tone’, ‘dazzling technique’, ‘charismatic stage presence’ and has been described as ‘a major talent’ (Harris Goldsmith, Musical America). Nareh has received more than twenty awards, including First Prize at the 2008 Concours Musical International de Montréal. Nareh’s concerto repertoire includes more than 30 works and she has performed with leading orchestras and in solo recitals in major concert venues across the world.
Aged fifteen, Nareh became the youngest ever student at the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts, studying with Heinz Medjimorec and Avedis Kouyoumdjian, and with Arie Vardi at the Hannover Academy of Music. Only five degrees of separation: Nareh’s first teacher was Alexander Gurgenov at The Tchaikovsky Music School in Yerevan, Armenia. Gurgenov was a pupil of Alexander Edelmann, whose teacher Heinrich Neuhaus was taught by Felix Blumenfeld, who studied composition with Tchaikovsky.
Nareh Arghamanyan’s discography includes a Rachmaninoff solo album with Pentatone, the Piano Concertos of Liszt, Prokofiev (No. 3) and the Khachaturian Piano Concerto with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra and Alain Altinoglu, and the first recording of Franz Danzi’s Piano Concerto with the Munich Chamber Orchestra and Howard Griffiths, released by Sony Classical. Nareh also enjoys transcribing orchestral and instrumental works for solo piano, including music by J.S. Bach, Khachaturian, Komitas, Piazolla, Rachmaninoff, Richard Strauss, Tarrega and Tchaikovsky.
Nareh is a passionate teacher, keen to pass on her musical heritage to younger generations. And she engages strongly in supporting benevolent causes and frequently performs for charitable projects including support for children with leukemia, assisting orphanages and disaster zone victims, for which she has raised more than 200,000 euros.