Monday 08 August 2022

ACN (Malta) organising an afternoon concert in aid of Ukraine

(From left) Ukrainian pianist Swetlana Reder, Polish pianist Julia Miller and British-Maltese mezzo soprano Sophia Grech

Internationally acclaimed British mezzo-soprano Sophia Grech, Polish pianist Julia Miller and Ukrainian pianist Swetlana Reder are teaming up to present a classical and semi-classical concert in aid of Ukrainian people. This will be held on Saturday 11th June at 5.00pm at The Imperial, RudolphStreet, Sliema, during an afternoon tea.

The national director of Aid to the Church in Need (Malta), Stephen Axisa said: “As from February 24, ACN has already delivered two huge aid packages to the Ukrainian people and now is preparing for the third one.  

“ACN is at the frontline of helping Ukraine. Thank you for all that you do.” This was stated by theauxillary bishop from Kamyanets-Podilskyi, Rt. Rev. Radoslav Zmitrowicz, as international humanitarian aid is dwindling just as the savings of many refugees are running dry. Bishop Zmitrowicz called on the international community to keep supporting Ukraine.

Mr Axisa said: “ACN (Malta) wants to contribute to this effort. Over the past three months, the Church in Ukraine has been struggling to deal with waves of internally displaced people as it continues to support its faithful during this war. But, as the conflict drags on, the Ukrainian bishops want to prepare for some of the longer lasting effects of this conflict, which will be psychological, spiritual, physical and humanitarian in nature.  These will continue to manifest themselves years when and after peace is established.

Through this concert, attendees will be donating €30 or more per person to support ACN (Malta)’s aid for Ukraine.   All three peformers are participating for free to contribute to this effort.

Among others, the one-hour concert includes pieces by R. Schumann, W. A. Mozart, N. Rimski-Korsakov – S. Rachmaninov, T. Del Riego, L. Bernstein, F. Durante, G. Paisiello, G. Bizet and S. Reder. 

Internationally acclaimed mezzo-soprano Sophia Grech is described by The Sunday Times (London) as “a sensitive and elegant performer” and by Gramophone Magazine as “an ambassador for new music”. Sophia has been featured and reviewed by the world’s press, including newspapers and magazines with the most recent one being on Le Monde.

Throughout a career spanning over two decades since graduating from the Royal College of Music in 1995, Sophia has won great acclaim for her performances at leading concert halls and opera houses such as at the Royal Albert Hall, the Royal Festival Hall and the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, plus festivals including the Edinburgh Festival, Belgrade International Music Series, Prague Spring Festival,English Music Festival, Oklahoma State Music Series, Barcelona International Festival, and others. Sophia has also performed for royalty and heads of state including Prince Charles.

In 2015, Sophia was diagnosed with autism and is now a leading ambassador on behalf of associated organisations alongside her performing career. Sophia has spoken at autism conferences worldwide and in 2017 she was invited to open the XI Autism-Europe International Congress.

Recently, Sophia’s book titled ‘I Wish I Could Sing’, a beginners’ guide to singing was published by Olympia (UK).

Polish-born pianist Julia Miller graduated from the Music Academy of Lodz in piano performance and chamber music under the tutelage of Prof. Anna Wesolowska- Firlej, Prof. Boguslaw Pikala and Prof. Cezary Sanecki, among others. She was a finalist in various competitions and had her own trio that performed in the most prestigious locations in Poland. Since then, she has carved for herself an international career both as a soloist and as a musical collaborator.

After a stint in Dublin, Ireland, she moved to Malta in 2012 and built herself a reputation as both an accompanist to vocalists as well as an accomplished pianist in her own right. She collaborated with the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, Kor Malta, the Manoel Theatre Youth Opera and been present in several festivals, including the Malta Baroque Festival, the Malta International Spring Festival and has been the piano accompanist to soprano Miriam Gauci during her masterclasses at the Gaulitana Festival.

Since 2019, Julia Miller has also started a series of solo recitals titled ‘Julia Miller Plays’, playing a wide-ranging repertoire of classical piano pieces, especially from the Romantic Period. She is also a teacher at the Malta School of Music where she works in voice, piano, and chamber music departments. Currently, Julia is the brains behind the project Valletta-Varsavja-Vjenna, where she will be playing Mozart’s D Minor Piano Concerto together with Polish based Apertus Quartet as well as piano part in the specially commissioned piano quintet by Karl Fiorini. The project is supported by Arts Council Malta and the Embassy of Poland in Valletta.

Following a diploma in music from the Music Highschool of Tchernigiv in Ukraine, Swetlana Rederbecame a piano teacher and concertmaster. Her study of music was based on the Moscow Piano Schoolthat puts the emphasis on a brilliant performance, highly professional teaching, and a comprehensive syllabus.

Swetlana achieved an M.A. degree in cultural studies from the University of Munich in Germany. In Malta, she continued her education by doing a degree in Psychology with the University of Hgen in Germany, and offering music coaching for emotional and personal development in defining life events. Swetlana is a life coach certified by the European Association for Integrative Coaching (EAIC).

Swetlana offers a unique teaching approach, considering music as a lifestyle with practical use for everyone to have a better and more fulfilled life. Three promising piano students, Timothy Atkinson (11 years), Thomas Dyer (12 years) and Artur Fischer (12 years) opening the concert, come from her Music Academy Malta.

The concert is being supported by both The Imperial and the Malta Cultural Institute. Places may be booked by calling ACN (Malta) on 2148 7818 or 7999 9969. Transport can be provided.

Powered by