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»A thousand happy memories...« 

»It should give the impression of someone looking gently towards a spot that calls to mind a thousand happy memories. It is a kind of reverie in the moonlight on a beautiful spring evening….«  

This is how Frédéric Chopin described his 2nd piano concerto, which premiered in 1830 shortly before the composer left Poland, never to return. The »happy memory« and the »reverie« behind it was the young composer's first great love, Konstancja Gladkowska, of whom he wrote: »I have – perhaps to my own misfortune – already found my ideal, whom I worship faithfully and sincerely. Six months have elapsed, and I haven't yet exchanged a syllable with her of whom I dream every night...«

The composer's proverbial shyness is humanity's gain. Confiding his fiery yearning, intimate emotions and most profound thoughts to his piano resulted in presumably the most touching and elegant pieces of music ever written. Brilliant and translucent yet fiercely deep and complex. 

The same adjectives can also be used to describe interpretations of Chopin's music by Alexander Gadjiev. »Chopin often said that the score was not enough for everything he wanted to express,« he remarked in one of his interviews. »So, can I add more of myself to the mix? I try to find a way to dig into myself and explore my inner world, my own emotions, and yet to be faithful in understanding the score.«

And this is just what we are getting on September 15th The Opening – the very thing that makes Gadjiev one of the most thrilling and sought-after pianists of today: his incredible ability to find and follow the elusive line between the emotive and analytical, blending both into a mesmerising, fulfilling unity. What an inauguration!

Welcome to Festival Maribor 2022 – a thousand happy memories are ready to be made!

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