Lola Astanova, A Young Russian Piano Virtuoso Embarks Upon Her Professional Career In America

Lola astanova, a young russian piano virtuoso embarks upon her professional career in the us with two key projects just announced principal of 2007 neiman marcus® christmas book fantasy gift, debut album available exclusively on itunes
Nov. 8, 2007 - PRLog -- Piano virtuoso Lola Astanova will have a busy fall and winter.  The concert pianist describes herself as a performer who “plays from the heart”.  Younger audiences that she has been attracting identify with her style and personality, and are also falling in love with the great composers whose works Lola performs.  “I am proud to help a new audience discover some of the great romantic and classical piano works, and it is exciting to see that many people come to this music with open ears and hearts.  This is one of my biggest professional motivations, and I look forward to continuing pursuing this objective,” says Lola.

Lola was invited to be part of a nearly century old American tradition - the annual Neiman Marcus® Christmas catalog.  Ms. Astanova was approached by executive producer Misha Levintas, who invited her to be the centerpiece of a fantasy gift featured in the 2007 Neiman Marcus® Christmas Book entitled “Classical Superstars Fantasy Concert.”  Mr. Levintas describes the event as a private holiday concert for the buyer and 499 of their closest friends in their hometown. At the concert, Ms. Astanova will perform the famed Tchaikovsky piano concerto with the legendary Kirov Orchestra led by the world renowned Maestro Valery Gergiev.  The Kirov Orchestra will also perform the Nutcracker Suite, and another Tchaikovsky masterpiece of the buyers choice.  The event will be hosted by award winning, beloved television personality, Regis Philbin. The concert will be filmed as an after-party favor for each of the guests and the lucky buyer will also get to keep the Steinway & Sons concert grand after all the artists autograph it.  The asking price of the fantasy gift is $1,590,000.00!  Mr. Levintas remarks, “This fantasy gift is about bringing the magic of Tchaikovsky’s music to life in a most remarkable and unforgettable way.  Such goal calls for performers of truly extraordinary technical and artistic abilities.  We have looked at numerous talented and accomplished musicians, but at the end of the day there was simply nobody else who could do what Ms. Astanova is able to create on stage.”  

Ms. Astanova’s first American album titled Debut was released for sale exclusively on iTunes.  The long-awaited album features compositions by Beethoven, Chopin and Liszt.  Ms. Astanova also co-produced the record.  

Born in Tashkent (former USSR), Lola began learning the piano at the age of six with Professor Tamara Popovich.  In 1989 Ms. Astanova entered the elite V. Uspensky Specialized School of Music, and became the finest student of the school that has previously given the music world a winner of the Van Cliburn and Chopin competitions Alexei Sultanov.  Throughout her student years, Ms. Astanova constantly visited Moscow for private classes with the "Godfather of the Russian piano school" - Professor Lev Naumov of the Tchaikovsky Conservatory.  It was Dr. Naumov who said: “When it comes to classical music, Lola Astanova possesses a truly ingenious intuitive ability. “

Ms. Astanova began appearing as a performer at the age of eight.  She has played concerts in Germany, France, Austria, Italy and Russia both as a soloist and with orchestras.  Lola’s effortless power, speed and precision, combined with emotional depth and lyricism have won her the hearts of every audience.  In 1996 Ms. Astanova became a Laureate of the Second International Chopin Competition for Young Pianists in Moscow.  Her performances at the Big & Small Hall of the Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory were featured in a Chopin Compilation album released by Zvuk Records.  The same year Lola played at the UNESCO event in Paris, France, and her performance was featured in a UNESCO documentary Prodigies of the 20th Century.  At the age of 17, she traveled to Europe with a series of solo programs as well as Tchaikovsky's Concerto No. 1 that she performed with Mahrische Philharmonie in Vienna, Austria.  Her shows have been highlighted in the international media including CNN and BBC reports.
After the initial success, Ms. Astanova’s young career was confronted with several personal and bureaucratic challenges, which precluded her from performing for nearly 2 years.  Fighting to break the barriers and overcome the emotional burden of professional isolation, at the age of 19 Lola made a decision to move to the United States and start everything anew.  She arrived to Houston, TX, and after playing an audition at Rice University was invited into the Master’s Program with a full scholarship and Presidential stipend.  Lola completed her Master’s Degree, and graduated summa cum laude in May of 2005.
While at Rice University, Ms. Astanova started charting a new path for her professional career in the United States.  She quickly became a sensation among the local music aficionados, and in May of 2004, made her major American debut at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC.  She has worked tirelessly expanding her repertoire, which presently includes some of the most virtuoso compositions of Rachmaninoff, Chopin and Liszt.  Ms. Astanova’s current collaboration with her legendary Maestro Valery Gergiev, is undoubtedly one of the most dynamic and entertaining artistic projects of the decade.  

Elegant and infinitely passionate about music and performing, Lola Astanova is the most exciting name in the world of classical music today.

Currently, Ms. Astanova resides in New York City.

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