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Sofía Gómez Alberto & Arthur Di Francesco

9 May @ 12:45 pm 1:45 pm

£7 Adults

Tickets on the door (cash or card). Under 18s and carers go free

Doors open at 12:15 pm

Aylesbury Lunchtime Music

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St Mary the Virgin

Church Street
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire HP20 2JJ United Kingdom
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Sofia Gomes Alberto and Arthur di Francesco


Sofía Gómez Alberto


Arthur Di Francesco


Notes on the performers

Sofía Gómez Alberto

Sofía Gómez Alberto is a Spanish violinist and violist currently studying for a Master of Performance with Itzhak Rashkovsky and Nathan Braude at the Royal College of Music, where she is an Antonio Brosa Award Holder.

In July 2022, Sofía completed her undergraduate studies at the Royal College of Music with Lutsia Ibragimova and Yuri Zhislin, graduating with First Class Honours. Prior to her studies at the RCM, Sofía studied with Anna-Liisa Bezrodny at the Junior Department of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and privately with Valeri Gazarian. Throughout her studies, Sofía has participated in masterclasses with violinists such as Maxim Vengerov, Mari Tampere-Bezrodny, Alina Ibragimova, Tanja Becker-Bender and Valentina Korolkova, and violists such as Nobuko Imai, Wenting Kang and Paul Cortese.

Passionate about chamber music, Sofía has played with various ensembles and performed in festivals such as the Chipping Campden Music Festival, Stamford International Music Festival and Musethica. Also a keen orchestral player, Sofía has taken part in several youth orchestras such as the European Union Youth Orchestra, Joven Orquesta Nacional de España, LGT Young Soloists and the Cuban-European Academy at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. She is also one of the violinists taking part in the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s Pathway Scheme for the 2023/2024 academic year.

Sofía was recently awarded 3rd Prize at the 2023 Llanes International Viola Competition. Other prizes include the Viola Prize at the 2022 RCM Viola Competition and the 2018 Lutine Prize (Junior Guildhall).

Sofía plays on a Nicolò Gagliano violin and a Joseph Hill viola, both kindly on loan from the Royal College of Music.

Arthur Di Francesco

French-Spanish pianist Arthur Di Francesco recently graduated from the Royal College of Music, London with First Class Honours, having studied solo piano with Gordon Fergus-Thompson and collaborative piano with Simon Lepper. He previously studied at the RCM Junior Department with Venezuelan pianist Clara Rodríguez, where he was awarded the Constance Poupard Piano Prize and participated in the Première of the “Spectrum 5” album of pieces commissioned by the ABRSM. A Finalist of the Jaques Samuels Junior Intercollegiate Piano Festival and the Royal Philharmonic Society Young Instrumentalist Prize, he has performed in venues including the Wigmore Hall, the 1901 Arts Club (London), the Elgar Room (Royal Albert Hall) and the Cadogan Hall.

A keen chamber musician, he has performed in various group formations in France, Spain, Germany and the UK and been coached by eminent performers including Alina Ibragimova, Cedric Pescia, Anna-Liisa Bezrodny, Mari Tampere-Bezrodny, Avri Levitan, Emanuelle Bertrand, Niklas Schmidt, Sebastian Schmidt and Ralph Evans. He has previously been selected to participate in the International Mendelssohn Festival Summer School, Hamburg, and Rostock Summer Campus, and was recently chosen to take part in the Notos Piano Quartet Chamber Music Academy 2023, playing alongside members of the ensemble as part of the course.


Programme notes

Robert Schumann

Fantasiestücke for Viola and Piano, Op.73
  1. Zart und mit Ausdruck (Tender and with expression)
  2. Lebhaft, leicht (Lively, light)
  3. Rasch und mit Feuer (Quick and with fire)

Fantasiestücke for clarinet and piano, Op. 73, were written in 1849 by Robert Schumann. Though they were originally intended for clarinet and piano, Schumann indicated that the clarinet part could be also performed on violin or cello. Schumann wrote the pieces over just two days in February 1849, and originally entitled them “Soirée Pieces” before settling on the title Fantasiestücke. The title is one Schumann was fond of, since he used it in several works. This poetic title promotes the fundamental Romantic notion that creative expression is the product of the artist’s unrestricted imagination. In addition, the connotations of “fantasy” justify the sudden mood changes.

Source: Wikipedia

York Bowen (1884-1961)

Melody for the G String, Op.47

Published by Swan & Co in 1923 and later reissued by Josef Weinberger, the Melody for the G string was conceived for violin or viola playing in the same octave register. Accordingly it confines itself to darker hues and a modest range of pitch, its technical challenges arising from its key, G flat major. Assuming an accompanist of professional standing, Bowen is able to embellish and elevate a simple conceit by pianistic and harmonic means. The result is a gently affecting statement in ternary form and triple time, dominated by the rhythm presented in the violinist’s opening notes.

Source: Francis Pott

York Bowen (1884-1961)

Allegro de Concert for Viola and Piano, Op.21 No.2

Originally composed for cello and piano, the substantial Allegro de concert is dated February 1906. Doubtless influenced by Tertis, Bowen agreed that it should also be played on the viola, and this is the way it is most often heard. With its bold piano accompaniment, its headlong opening Allegro con fuoco, and brief wistful central interlude with its hint of an elegiac tune that never fully evolves, it would have allowed Tertis every opportunity to demonstrate his virtuosity and unique tone. Yet even in York Bowen’s press cuttings there seems to be no report of a performance in Bowen’s lifetime.

Source: Lewis Foreman


Fantasy in C Major for Violin and Piano, Op.159
  1. Andante molto
  2. Allegretto
  3. Tema e Variazioni – Andantino-Adagio
  4. Tempo I
  5. Allegro vivace
  6. Allegretto
  7. Presto

Franz Schubert composed his Fantasy in C major for violin and piano in December 1827. It was the last of his compositions for violin and piano, and was premiered in January 1828 by the violinist Josef Slavik and the pianist Carl Maria von Bocklet at the Landhaussaal in Vienna.

The difficult work was “calculated to display Slavík’s virtuoso [violin] technique” and is demanding for both instruments. According to pianist Nikolai Lugansky, the Fantasy “is the most difficult music ever written for the piano”, and “more difficult than all of Rachmaninov’s [piano] concertos put together”.

Source: Wikipedia