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The Allen Philharmonic continues its tradition of providing world-class music and special concert guests as we present A Festival of Russian Composers, on Saturday, January 25, 2014 at 8 p.m. at the Allen Performing Arts Center located on the campus of Allen High School.  We welcome Fei-Fei Dong, finalist from this summer’s Cliburn Foundation Competition, in a performance of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor.

Praised for her “natural musicality and beauty of tone” (Cincinnati Enquirer ) during the 2013 Cliburn Competition, Chinese pianist Fei-Fei Dong landed among the top six finalists and won three years of concert tours in the United States.  She has begun to build a reputation for her poetic interpretations, charming audiences with her “passion, piquancy and tenderness” and “winning stage presence.” Dallas Morning News

The Piano Concerto No. 3 in D minor, composed by Sergei Rachmaninoff, has the reputation of being one of the most technically challenging piano concertos in the standard classical repertoire.  Rachmaninoff made his first tour of the United States as a pianist in 1909, an event for which he composed the Piano Concerto No. 3 in D as his calling card. “The night’s (2013 Cliburn Competition) most promising music-making came last, when Chinese pianist, Fei-Fei Dong, 22, was soloist in Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3.  The work’s fiendish difficulties held little terror for the pianist, who managed the cascades of notes with aplomb and occasionally reveled in the wealth of poetic writing.”  Donald Rosenberg, The Plain Dealer

Born in Shenzhen, Ms. Dong began piano lessons at the age of 5. Ms. Dong gave her first recital at age 10 and made her orchestra debut three years later, performing Rachmaninoff’s Third Concerto with the Macau Youth Symphony Orchestra. She moved to New York to study at The Juilliard School, earning her Bachelor of Music under the guidance of Yoheved Kaplinsky, with whom she continues to study in pursuit of her master’s degree.   She has appeared with the Aspen Music Festival, Hong Kong, Juilliard, Shanxi, and Shenzhen Symphony Orchestras.  She has made debuts in Alice Tully Hall, Warsaw Philharmonic Concert Hall, and the Louvre Auditorium, and has been featured multiple times on New York’s WQXR radio. 

Her inaugural season as a Cliburn winner includes debuts with the Corpus Christi and Big Spring Symphony Orchestras with John Giordano and recital appearances across the United States.  The Allen Philharmonic is pleased to bring Ms. Dong to the concert stage here in our community.

Additional concert selections include Tchaikovsky’s Cappricio Italien and Prokofiev’s Lieutenant Kije Suite. For tickets and information, please visit our website www.allenphilharmonic.org or call our office at 972-359-0656.  Join us for an exciting concert experience!