St Bride's: Music - Lunchtime Recitals

Waimay Yau – soprano, Leona Crasi – piano

Friday, 12 January at 1:15pm - FREE ADMITTANCE - Retiring Collection

Waimay Yau – soprano, Leona Crasi – pianoWaimay Yau – soprano, Leona Crasi – piano

L van Beethoven

Piano Sonata op.57

  i. Allegro assai

 ii. Andante con moto

iii. Allegro ma non troppo -- Presto

Z Kodály

Árva vagyok (I am an orphan)

A csitári hegyek alatt (Under the mountains of Csitári)

B Bartok

Nyole Magyar Nepdal (Eight Hungarian Folksongs)

1. Fekete főd, fehér az én zsebkendőm (Black is the earth)

2. Istenem, Istenem, áraszd meg a vizet (My God, my God, make the river swell)

3. Asszonyok, asszonyok, had' legyek társatok (Wives, let me be one of your company)

4. Annyi bánat a szívemen (So much sorrow lies in my heart)

5. Ha kimegyek arr' a magos tetőre (If I climb yonder hill)

6. Töltik a nagyerdő útját (They are mending the great forest highway)

7. Eddig való dolgom a tavaszi szántás (Up to now my work was plowing in the springtime)

8. Olvad a hó, csárdás kis angyalom (The snow is melting)

Waimay Yau is a Hong-Kong born soprano currently studying with Philip Doghan and Ian Partridge at the Royal Academy of Music. She has been a young artist of Talent Unlimited since 2014 and is currently a member of St Alfege Church Choir, Greenwich. She won the Louis Watt Competition in 2014 and the XIII Hungarian Music Competition in May 2017, held by the Balassi Institute. She received her award and performed at the Cantacuzino Palace in Bucharest with Leona Crasi, and as part of the award they gave an evening recital in Vienna, Austria.

As a soloist, she performed in the Schubert's Mass in Ab with Colin Touchin and Spires Music Orchestra and Chorus in April 2017. She was Messagiera in Monteverdi's L'Orfeo with the Guildford Youth Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Eric Foster, in July 2016. In February 2017, she performed in Offenbach's Orphee Aux Enfers (Orpheus in the Underworld) with Royal Academy Opera at the Hackney Empire. Waimay also enjoys choral singing and exploring new works with her fellow students and composers; for instance, the premiere of Tamas Reti's 'Five Songs to poems by Apollinaire', and 'New Year' - a Hungarian piece for solo mezzo-soprano and orchestra, conducted by Simon Bainbridge. She has performed both solo and choral concerts in Rome, London, Brussels, Romania, Hong Kong and Germany.

Born into a half-Hungarian, half-Romanian family and raised in the region of Transylvania, Leona Crasi has been drawn to classical Hungarian repertoire since she left her native Romania during her early teens to study abroad. Her continuous devotion to music has brought her to places all over Europe and the United States. She has performed in Spain at Centro Municipal Integrado de Pumarín de 'Gijón-sur', in Lithuania at Klaipeda Academy of Arts Concert Hall, in Romania at Cantacuzino Palace 'George Enescu' National Museum, in the United Kingdom at Goldsmiths' Hall in London, and in the United States at the Lied Center of Kansas and at Reynolds-Kirschbaum Recital Hall UAB. Leona has had success in both national and international competitions and festivals, most recently in the 2017 Balassi Institute XIII Hungarian Music Festival in Romania (first prize), the 2016 Worthing Music and Arts Festival in the UK (special prize), the 2014 Boykin Piano Festival (first prize) and the 2013 Louis Pickard Music Concerto Competition, both in Alabama (first prize).

She is now studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London under the tutelage of Colin Stone. Over the years she has worked with professors from renowned music institutions such as the Franz Liszt Academy of Music, Juilliard School of Music, Cleveland Institute of Music and Royal Conservatory of Music. Her studies are generously supported by the International Scholarship and Tuition Services and the Halliburton Company, and she became a member of Talent Unlimited Music Charity in August 2017.

Waimay Yau and Leona Crasi have both been awarded the grand prize in the XIII Hungarian Music Competition in Bucharest, Romania. They are both undergraduate students at the Royal Academy of Music. In addition to the standard classical repertoire, they performed Chinese repertoire at the China Exchange London in September, and will perform more Hungarian music at a recital in Vienna in December 2017. This April, as a duo, they toured in Romania, generously organised by the Balassi Institute. Individually, Leona Crasi will be performing with the Maidstone Wind Symphony Orchestra at Sevenoaks in 21 February 2018 and Waimay Yau will sing as the soprano soloist in Brahms' Requiem at Conventry Cathedral on 7 April.