Sergei Prokofiev Sonata for violin and piano No.2 Op. 94a in D Major (24’)
VI. Allegro con brio
César Franck Sonata for violin and piano in A major (29’)
I. Allegro ben moderato
III.Ben moderato: Recitative-Fantasia
IV.Allegro poco mosso
Plus two smaller pieces:
Lili Boulanger 2 Morceaux: Nocturne and Cortège (5’)
Maurice Ravel – Tzigane
Amber Emson, Violin
Amber (18) started playing violin at the age of 5 as a pupil of Margaret Norris and later Natasha Boyarsky; in 2009 she joined RAM’s Junior Department. As a student at Chetham’s School of Music 2014-16, she won the school’s Concerto Competition resulting in a performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with Chetham’s Sinfonia at Manchester Cathedral, and the Catherine Perkins Chamber Music Prize. Between 2016 and 2019 Amber was member of the Royal College of Music’s Junior Department continuing her violin lessons
with Maciej Rakowski. Since 2020 she studies at the Royal Academy of Music under the tutelage of So-Ock Kim. Amber actively participated in a number of mastercourses, amongst these with Pavel Vernikov, Maurizio Fuks (International Violin Mastercourse Kronberg Academy) and Kolja
Blacher (Carl Flesch Akademie Baden-Baden). In 2018, Amber was awarded the 2nd prize at the X. International Competition for Violin and Viola “Szymon Goldberg” in Meissen. In June 2019 she won 1st prize in the National Round
of Germany’s “Jugend Musiziert” competition, and in the same year she won 1st prize at the International Music Competition Hohenpriessnitz.
Invitations to perform as soloist with orchestras included Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnole with the Orchestra of the City, the Sussex Concert Orchestra and with the Richmond Orchestra. In June 2019 she was invited as soloist of Paganini’s Violin Concerto No 2 with Reed’s School Orchestra at Cadogan Hall, followed by Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with Sussex Concert Orchestra in Bexhill Festival, with Worthing Philharmonic Orchestra and, in November 2021,
with Sutton Symphony Orchestra. In November 2019 she made her debut playing Dvorak’s Violin Concerto with Enfield Chamber Orchestra. In 2020/21, Amber returned to Richmond Orchestra as a soloist, performing Sibelius’ Violin Concerto. Amber is a passionate chamber musician; together with her duo partner cellist Willard Carter, she won the RCM JD Chamber Music Competition and performed at the Wigmore Hall in June 2017 as part of their annual Young Artists’ showcase concert. Amber participated in the ‘Mit Musik – Miteinander’ Chamber Music course at Kronberg Academy in September 2018. Since August 2019, she is a member of LGT Young Soloists, performing in major concert halls worldwide as a soloist as well as part of the group. Recent tours have
taken her to Rheingau Musikfestival, Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Berliner Philharmonie and Musikverein Wien, as well as a 2.5 weeks’ tour to Asia (Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Jakarta) and a CD recording. During the years, Amber’s musical activities have been supported by generous grants from
Awards for Young Musicians, EMI Music Sound Foundation, the Gerald Finzi Trust, the Rhona Reid Charitable Trust, the Nicholas Boas Charitable Trust, the Humphrey Richardson Taylor Charitable Trust, the Kathleen Trust and the Spoff’s Chamber Music Scholarships; she is a 2017, 2018 and 2019 Junior Scholarship recipient at the Hattori Foundation. Amber plays on a fine violin by Matthew Taylor from 1806.
Leah Nicholson, Piano
Leah Nicholson was born in 2001 and began studying with Galina Sandovskaya in St Petersburg, Russia, before continuing her musical education at Chetham’s School of Music in the UK with John Gough and Dr Murray McLachlan.
In 2018 Leah was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Schools of Music in Solo Piano Performance Diploma (FRSM with Distinction) and has since won a scholarship to further her studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she is studying with Professor Tessa Nicholson. She has won top prizes at numerous competitions internationally and throughout the UK, including the 2014 International Chopin Festival in Mazovia, Poland, Polyphonica International Competition in St. Petersburg, Russia, the Scottish International Youth Piano Competition, the Loretto James Waterhouse Piano Competition, EPTA Piano Competition UK and Chetham’s Bösendorfer Piano Competition. Leah is also the youngest ever winner of the Keldwyth Young Musicians Award.
Leah frequently performs in concerts and has appeared in many venues across Europe including the Wigmore Hall in London, Steinway Hall (UK), Sage Gateshead in Newcastle, Bridgewater Hall and Stoller Hall in Manchester, Petrikirche in St. Petersburg, Russia, and Kadriorg Palace in Tallinn, Estonia. As a result of winning Chetham’s Concerto Competition, she performed Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2 with Chetham’s Orchestra conducted by
David Chatterton, and has also performed Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1 and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.3 under the baton of conductors such as Ryan Bancroft and Leon Reimer. As a developing artist, Leah has performed in masterclasses for renowned artists such as Christopher Elton, Stephen Hough, Noriko Ogawa, John Gough, Ory Shihor, Peter Frankl, Eugen Indjic, Pas