Schubert, Beethoven, Suk & Voríšek
from 4 Impromptus D. 935 (1827):
- no. 3 in B flat major - Andante
L. van Beethoven
Sonata in E major Op. 109 (1820)
- Vivace, ma non troppo; adagio espressivo
- Andante molto cantabile ed espressivo
Six Pieces Op. 7 (1891)
- Love Song
- Two Idylls
L. van Beethoven
Fantasia Op. 77 (1809) - Allegro
from 4 Impromptus D. 899 (1827)
- n. 2 in E flat major – Allegro
- n. 3 in G flat major – Andante
J. V. H. Voríšek
Fantasie Op. 12 (1824)
- Allegro con brio
Besides pursuing an intensive teaching regime and other numerous musical commitments at Surrey University, Maureen Galea is an accomplished concert pianist in her own right.
This was admirably evident in her recital at Guildford United Reformed Church on Friday evening 10 October when she enthralled a large audience in a programme of music by Schubert, Beethoven, and the Bohemian composers Suk and Vorisek.
The late Beethoven Sonata in E op.109 with its lyrical but stately introduction,prestissimo second movement and lengthy set of variations requires much stamina of which Maureen has an abundance,provided a solid foundation for the first half of her concert. Preceding this sonata she played the third Impromptu of Schubert in Bflat and followed this with six delightful short pieces by Joseph Suk ,all of which were most sensitively played with each miniature faithfully reflecting its title such as --"Love Song", "Humoresque", and "Capriccietto" to name three.
After the interval we heard the Fantasia op 77 by Beethoven, two well known Schubert Impromptus in E flat and G flat the former of these two played with astonishing joy and exuberance, and to finish, another Fantasy,this time by Vorisek--his op 12 "Fantasia". Relatively unknown, Maureen has championed Voríšek in her studies and research and certainly seems to come into her own when playing these romantic Slav. composers.This "Fantasia" is certainly a fine piece, full of Slavonic passion which she played with aplomb !
Sustained applause demanded an encore and the audience`s reward was a storming rendering of Gershwin`s first Prelude on which to ponder on their way home.
Maltese pianist Maureen Galea obtained the L.L.C.M. and L.R.S.M., followed by a B.A.(Hons.) degree in Music and a P.G.C.E. from the University of Malta. After being awarded a scholarship by the Italian Government, she continued furthering her studies at the Conservatorio 'Luigi Cherubini' in Florence, Italy. Besides Piano Performance as her principal study, she also studied choral and madrigal singing, chamber music and accompaniment.
Maureen graduated with an MMus with Distinction from the University of Surrey. She majored in Piano Performance under the direction of Clive Williamson, with subsidiary studies in Conducting, Criticism and Reviewing, and Musicology. Maureen attended numerous masterclasses with internationally renowned musicians including Philippe Cassard, Julian Jacobson and Artur Pizarro. She worked on Classical Improvisation with David Dolan and specialized in Czech piano repertoire with the internationally renowned expert on the subject, Radoslav Kvapil.
Maureen recently completed a PhD by Performance at the University of Surrey, under the supervision of Prof. Sebastian Forbes, her chosen area of research being performance and editing of music by Bohemian composers, in particular J. V. H. Voříšek. As part of her research, she produced six CDs of this composer's music and that of his contemporaries, and in March 2010 gave the modern premier of Voříšek's Rondo Espagnol, Op. 17 for piano and orchestra, for which she prepared the modern edition. She is steadily making a name for herself with her solo and ensemble performances of works by lesser known Czech composers, such as Koželuh's Piano Concerto for 4 hands which she performed in March 2012 with friend and colleague Margaret Roberts, and Hummel's Concertino, performed in May 2012 with the University of Surrey Chamber Orchestra.
She has been a prizewinner at several competitions in Malta, Italy and the UK. She has performed in innumerable concerts as a soloist, in chamber groups and as accompanist in the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Italy, Malta, England and Scotland. Of particular mention are appearances at the Fairfield Hall, Hatchlands Park, Dorking Halls, the Warehouse, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Lauderdale House, the Purcell Room, Chetham's International Festival and Summer School, and various performances in the Guildford International Music Festival. She gave recitals at an annual Hummel Festival organised by 'Orpheus & Bacchus' in Bordeaux, France, and has been invited to give concerts in Prague several times. She has also given a highly successful recital on Bartok's own piano in Buda Castle, Budapest, Hungary. Maureen has performed to great acclaim for HE The President of Malta, HRH The Duke of Kent and other eminent dignitaries.
Maureen currently conducts a busy performance schedule, both as a soloist and as an ensemble player. She was a member of the Kantanti Ensemble and is an active member of the Guildford Chamber Choir and Surrey Cantata. She holds the post of Associate piano tutor at the University of Surrey, and is one of the music department's accompanists. She also founded and sponsors a biennial piano duet competition for students, 'Quattro Mani!'. She is also a much sought-after piano teacher in various schools in Surrey, and regularly organises educational concerts for young students.