Ariana Kashefi
Ariana Kashefi

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George Fu
George Fu

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Ariana Kashefi
Ariana Kashefi

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Wednesday 9 March 2022 at 7:30 pm
at St Mary's Church

As part of Barnes Music Festival 2022

Ariana Kashefi    cello

George Fu    piano



Jim Parker     Sonatina for cello & piano

(World premiere)


1  Ala Klezmer

2  Fluido

3  Semplice

4  Contra Dance

Beethoven    Cello Sonata No.5 in D, Op.102 No.2


Janáček    Pohádka

Britten    Cello Sonata, Op.65  


Praised for her innate musicianship and captivating stage presence, British-Persian cellist Ariana Kashefi is in high demand as a chamber musician and soloist performing in such venues as the Wigmore Hall, Pierre Boulez Saal, Berlin Philharmonie and more.

Ariana has a true love and passion for chamber music and regularly performs with many renowned artists. Upcoming performances include collaborations with pianists Bruno Canino and Maksim Stsura – with whom she was awarded the first prize at the 2019 Luigi Nono chamber music competition in Turin, Italy. Though she regularly performs Classical cello repertoire, Ariana is also very keen to perform and explore modern pieces for the cello and expand the cello repertoire.


she recently performed a solo cello recital of 21st century music at the South Bank centre, including the premiere of a new solo cello piece ‘From Night’ by  Deborah Pritchard, which was written and dedicated to her for the occasion.  She is a Talent Unlimited Artist and the winner of Making Music’s ‘Awards for Young Musicians’ (AYCA) as well as being a City Music Foundation Artist. She is also a top prize winner in the International Rubinstein cello Competition held in Berlin, a finalist in the Pierre Fournier Award which took place at the Wigmore Hall in London and a ‘Villa Musica’ scholarship recipient where she was also awarded the loan and use of a fine Gagliano cello.

Ariana received the prestigious ‘Julius Isserlis Scholarship’ for instrumental studies abroad from the Royal Philharmonic Society which allowed her to study for her masters at the Hochschule für Musik ‘Hanns Eisler’ in Berlin with professor Claudio Bohorquez. In Berlin she was chosen on two separate occasions to perform in the prestigious ‘Excellence Concerts’ for exceptional students and graduated with the highest possible mark for her final recital. After completing her masters, Ariana was hand picked by Maestro Barenboim to study at the prestigious Barenboim- Said Akademie where she received an artist diploma under the guidance of Frans Helmerson. 

She began her studies with Robert Max at the Junior department of the Royal Academy of music where she won all available prizes and later completed her bachelors of music with first class honours at the Royal College of Music with Melissa Phelps as an Amaryllis Scholar. At the College she won the ‘Anna Shuttleworth’ cello prize in her first year and was named an ‘RCM rising star’ after performing Prokofiev concertino with the RCM symphony orchestra.

Recently she has appeared as a soloist live on BBC radio 3 ‘In Tune’ performing a selection of works including excerpts from Poulenc’s Cello sonata, Debussy cello sonata and Schumann Fantasiestucke. As an orchestral player, Ariana has worked with the  London Symphony  and has been invited on several tours with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.

Ariana frequently performs as a soloist with orchestras across Europe: this season included performances with the Southgate Symphony orchestra, the Janus ensemble, the Narva Symphony orchestra in Narva, Estonia, the Bristol Metropolitan Orchestra and the North London Symphony Orchestra.

Apart from her main teachers, Ariana has also received invaluable guidance over the years in masterclasses at Kronberg Acaddemy, IMS Prussia Cove, and Siena Chigiana academy, from Steven Isserlis, David Geringas, Ralph Kirshbaum and Gary Hoffman

Described by the Boston Music Intelligencer as a “heroic piano soloist” with “stunning virtuosity”, Chinese-American pianist George Xiaoyuan Fu is establishing an international reputation as a captivating performer with distinctive intelligence and sensitivity.


George has performed as a piano soloist with orchestras such as the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, North Carolina Symphony, Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, and the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, and collaborated with conductors such as Michael Tilson Thomas, Stefan Asbury, Kensho Watanabe, Vinay Parameswaran, and Jonathan Berman. He has appeared at international venues such as the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, and Seiji Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood, while his live performances and interviews have been featured on several public television and radio broadcasts around the world, such as In Tune on BBC Radio 3, Performance Today on National Public Radio, and On Stage At Curtis in Philadelphia.

Passionate about the creation of new work, George is an active composer and performer of contemporary music, having collaborated with composers Krzysztof Penderecki, Harrison Birtwistle, George Lewis, Unsuk Chin, Tansy Davies, Phil Cashian, Matthew Aucoin, and Freya Waley-Cohen. Interested in collaborative work, George is a conductor, an active chamber musician with duo partners and ensembles around the world, and collaborator with artists of many disciplines.

After receiving a bachelors in economics from Harvard University, George studied at the Curtis Institute of Music under Jonathan Biss and Meng-Chieh Liu, and then at the Royal Academy of Music under Christopher Elton and Joanna MacGregor. He has also worked intensively with Pierre-Laurent Aimard, specifically on the music of Messiaen and Debussy. George is currently the Hodgson Piano Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music. He receives career support from the Kirckman Concert Society, the City Music Foundation, and the Keyboard Charitable Trust.