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Concert review from "Classical Sonoma," July 27, 2019

by Sonia Morse Tubridy

"Felix Mendelssohn’s D Major Cello Sonata (Op. 58) was performed by Ms. Tomkins and pianist Christian De Luca, the latter giving a brief talk on the fortepiano being used. It was built in 1841, with Viennese action enabling a light transparent touch suitable for the cascades of fast passages in Mendelssohn’s music. The four movements had exciting aural stories to impart. The first allegro assai vivace was brisk, impassioned, pushing ever forward until the triumphant ending. Ms. Tomkins played as if possessed and Mr. De Luca was a powerhouse of energy, yet never covering the cello. The allegretto scherzando was played by the pianist with humor and charm, cello pizzicato complementing, balance and blend always lovely. In the adagio movement the piano part starts with broken harp-like chorale chords, creating a spiritual atmosphere which the cello interrupts with a recitative chromaticism contributing to a highly expressive and tragic lament. This is very great writing for cello-piano duo.

The finale of this sonata begins with shocking chords, then terrified scrambling into wild ecstatic passages, dazzling passagework, a moment’s quiet, and the final dash to the exhilarating conclusion. There was an immediate standing ovation for this excellent performance."

"Congratulations to Christian De Luca on winning the Berkeley Festival & Exhibition's International Early Piano Competition on June 7th, 2018! And congratulations to finalists Anastasia Chin and David Belkovski as well for their beautiful performances today - all three of these young musicians are incredibly talented, and it was a joy for us and the audience to see them perform. We look forward to seeing them all again in the future! As part of the competition prize, Christian will join us in a concert sometime next season (stay tuned for details). And you can come see him on the stage of Valley of the Moon Music Festival this July in Sonoma, where he joins us for our Apprenticeship Program." #vmmfsonoma #2018BFX #earlypiano

Classical Pianist, Fortepianist

MOZART SERENADE: Mozart Piano Concerto No, 21 in C Major

September 26th 2018, at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center

Festive music commissioned for a high-profile Salzburg wedding and Mozart’s best-loved piano concerto, popularized in the Swedish film Elvira Madigan. Young Italian virtuoso Christian De Luca makes his Lincoln Center debut wiht the American Classical Orchestra.