We had the privilege to enjoy a wonderful afternoon of music at BISL with a delightful recital of classical Russian romances on Tuesday June 4th, performed by special guests Sergey Lunev, Marina Igritskaya and Saška Kolarič. Performances included songs from famous composers Mikhail Glinka, Pyotr Chaikovsky and Sergey Rakhmaninov, as well Sergey Lunev himself.

Sergey Lunev was born into a family of classical musicians and spent most of his childhood in a classical music environment. He studied music with his grandparents and later with his mother who was a Nizhny Novgorod Conservatoire postgraduate with the specialism in piano performance. For his higher education, Sergey chose philology and later did his BA degree in foreign languages. He returned to music in his thirties, when he was offered to write a composition for a concert in Samara, the city in Russia where he was born. Since then, he has been a constant participant of annual concerts in Samara, both as a composer and performer (piano). His works include two symphonies, several compositions for choir, piano quintet, pieces for viola and piano, music for the contemporary ballet “Male vs Female”, compositions for voice and piano, as well as pieces for piano solo. In 2017, Sergey completed his Master’s degree specialising in Composing for Film and TV at Kingston University London in the UK. Today Sergey continues his career as a pianist, composer and conducter.

Marina Igritskaya is a graduate of the Nizhny Novgorod State Music Academy in Russia. In 2005, she was the absolute winner of the international competition of Slavic cultures in Moscow and took the first prize at the vocal competition in Kineshma, Russia. In 2012, Marina was awarded the first prize at the Nizhny Novgorod vocal competition, dedicated to Prince Konstantin Konstantinovich and, in that same year successfully participated in the “Romansiada” vocal competition in Moscow. In 2014, she became the absolute winner at the international vocal competition of Russian songs in Ljubljana. She was a soloist of “Chaliapin-opera” in Russia, where she performed the role of the Noblewoman Vera Sheloga in Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov’s opera of the same name, as well as the role of Yaroslavna in Alexander Borodin’s opera “Prince Igor” and Kupava in Rimsky-Korsakov’s “The Snow Maiden”, among others. Marina is a constant participant of the singing group “Emeralds” in Moscow and is a soloist of the Naples Ensemble of Moscow too. Alongside her active solo career, Marina also teaches singing. Having moved to Slovenia in 2014, today she teaches singing at the Russian Center of Science and Culture in Ljubljana. She regularly acts as a jury member of the “Voice of Autumn” vocal competition in the ancient city of Kineshma, Russia, and is also the director of the International Singing Festival in Škofja Loka here in Slovenia.

Saška Kolarič started her musical education by studying the accordion at the Ormož Music School in Slovenia. She continued her studies in Maribor at the Conservatory of Music and Ballet, from which she graduated specialising in playing the accordion. She was also taking singing lessons with professor Jolandi Korat and continued her music education in “Hochschule für Musik und darstellende Kunst” in Graz, Austria, to which she brought all her love for art and music. In 1996 she graduated with honours and obtained her Master of Arts degree. During her career, she took singing lessons with renowned opera singers and musicians, Norman Shelter, Brigitte Fassbaender, Edita Gruberova, Bernarda Fink and Yurij Reja among others. Saška collaborated with SNG Opera and Ballet Ljubljana, where she sang the role of Janka in Engelbert Humperdinck’s “Janko and Metka”, the role of Cherubino in Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” and Kuharčka in Antonin Dvořák’s “Rusalka”. For thirteen years she worked as a full-time professor of singing at the Conservatory of Music and Ballet in Ljubljana. Today she shares her knowledge with young singers at the music school of Škofja Loka and performs in her home country as well as abroad in Austria, Italy, Bulgaria, Algeria, Chile and Russia.

We hope this is the first of many similar musical events held at school, as we are always keen to invite our community to share in our love of music here at BISL.