NEW YROK — Described as “extraordinary” and “larger than life,” the award-winning Armenian-American pianist Kariné Poghosyan has been praised for her “ability to get to the heart of the works she performs.” Poghosyan will perform a solo piano recital titled “Transformations” on Thursday, October 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.
The program was inspired by musical and personal “transformations,” including her own transformation from a music student in Armenia to a mature artist playing at Carnegie Hall. The program will feature transcriptions for solo piano by Beethoven, Liszt, Khachaturian and Stravinsky, and will open with Liszt’s virtuosic transcription of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5.
The second half of the program features Brahms’s powerhouse Variations on a Theme of Paganini. The program will conclude with imaginative transcriptions of ballet music, including Matthew Cameron’s arrangement of the Adagio from Aram Khachaturian’s “Spartacus” and Guido Agosti’s arrangement of Stravinsky’s “Firebird.” The recital is presented by the Institute of International Social Development Inc. and the United Nations Women’s Guild. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to girls’ education and empowerment programs around the world, provided by the Institute of International Social Development, Inc. and the United Nations Women’s Guild.
In Poghosyan’s words: “Transformations was inspired by a big shift in my own personal journey, during which I came to realize an enormous power locked within me. I feel that a lot of young women go through this transformative experience and arrive at a triumphant moment of self-actualization. All four of the works in the program are examples of transformation; they are compositions for piano that were originally something else — a symphony for a full orchestra, a violin showpiece, and two glorious much-loved ballets.
“Beethoven’s beloved C-minor Symphony No. 5 becomes a pianistic tour de force in Liszt’s transcription. Brahms takes Paganini’s beautiful Violin Caprice No. 24 and transforms it into a contrapuntal and multilayered piece for solo piano. The talented American pianist Matthew Cameron expands the iconic love theme from Khachaturian’s ballet ‘Spartacus’ into a lush Lisztian bravura piece. And lastly, the Italian pianist Guido Agosti highlights the rich colors of Stravinsky’s Russian ballet “Firebird” in a vivacious arrangement for solo piano.
“Ultimately, these four works also showcase a deeper inner thematic transformation. The Beethoven symphony, with the famous opening theme of fate knocking on the door, is a powerful journey from a dark C minor mood to a triumphant and life-affirming C major conclusion. In the Paganini, a simple tune grows into a grand virtuoso masterpiece. The Adagio from Khachaturian’s ballet ‘Spartacus’ opens with a pure, innocent love duet and expands into a passionate and fervent climax — that incredible moment when a light infatuation deepens into a true loving commitment. And lastly, in Stravinsky’s ‘Firebird,’the transformation takes place when the heroic prince kills the monstrous villain and breaks the latter’s spell to free his beloved princess. With this program, I hope to remind the audience that transformations take on many, diverse and universal forms.”