British pianist Ivana Gavrić has attracted considerable praise for her interpretations of Janáček, Liszt, Schubert, and more recently Grieg. Following her US solo debut, the Washington Post described Ivana’s playing as ‘impressive, insightful… a ravishing performance’. Last year, Ivana performed Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto to a sold-out Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. She has also been heard on concert platforms at The Wigmore Hall, the Barbican, Royal Festival Hall, Berlin Konzerthaus, KKL Lucerne, Gilmore Festival Rising Star Series, as well as across China, in Canada and Japan. As a concerto soloist, she has performed with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Aurora Orchestra and Southbank Sinfonia. She has collaborated with conductors including Rafael Payare, Nicholas Collon, Christian Kluxen, Karin Hendrickson and Ben Gernon. She especially enjoys working with chamber orchestras and one of her highlights to date has been performing with the Trondheim Soloists.
She created a sensation with her debut disc In the mists, winning BBC Music Magazine Newcomer of the Year for ‘playing of an altogether extraordinary calibre’. Her recording of Grieg was selected as Gramophone Editor’s Choice and the Grieg Society’s Recording of the Year. Her recent disc Chopin was Classic FM’s CD of the week, and described by Gramophone as ‘stylish readings.’ Over the last decade Ivana has worked closely with composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad, and her new concerto Between the Skies, the River and the Hills, written for Ivana, will be released on CD in September on Rubicon Classics.
Also a dedicated chamber musician, Ivana performed with violinist Maxim Vengerov as part of Live Music Now, the outreach scheme established by the late Lord Menuhin. She has partnered colleagues on the concert platform in festivals in the UK and Europe, taken part in the IMS Prussia Cove Open Chamber Music Sessions and is an alumna of the Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme. Outside the concert hall she is featured playing Chopin and Beethoven in BBC2’s adaptation of The Line of Beauty, and Bach in Anthony Minghella’s film Breaking and Entering.
Born into a musical family in Sarajevo, and raised in the UK, Ivana studied at the University of Cambridge and at the Royal College of Music. Her teachers include Niel Immelman, Peter Bithell and James Gibb. Additionally, Ivana has had the opportunity to study with esteemed musicians such as Menahem Pressler, Ferenc Rados, Dmitry Bashkirov, Boris Berman, Stephen Kovacevich and Leif Ove Andsnes. Ivana is indebted to the support of many trusts, including the Frankopan Fund (Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts), the MBF, The Solti Foundation, The Nicholas Boas Trust, The Richard Carne Trust and the RVW Trust. Ivana is proud to be an Ambassador for the charity ‘Music Action International’.
'there’s a keen intelligence at work, as well as a formidable technique'
‘…her playing is altogether of an extraordinary calibre’
BBC Music Magazine
‘hugely impressive… This is very high-class Schubert playing indeed.’
Superbly played with poetry and refinement rarely encountered these days'
International Record Review
'Gavric is a complete pianist: technically proficient, very musical, intelligent and exciting.'
American Record Guide
'There's a quality to her sound, something peppery, dark and candid'
Acclaim for Wigmore Hall Coffee Concert, April 2017
“Ivana Gavrić drew a full-house to Wigmore Hall for a well-planned programme drenched in expressive nineteenth-century Romanticism and full of poetic imagery. She is a pianist with great sensitivity to mood and an ability to create atmosphere. Rhapsodie espagnole obliged Gavrić to be a more conventional virtuoso, opening with a grand flourish and then bringing delicacy, rhythmic lift and a sense of fun to the whole; the escalating tension at the end was exhilarating. As an encore Gavrić played another Chopin Mazurka (in C, Opus 24/2), elegantly and intimately, a perfect end to a quite gorgeous recital.” Brian Barford, Classical Source Read full review here
Acclaim for recitals with Zuercher SingAkademie, Sept 2016
“Zauberisch am Flügel: Ivana Gavric’ Luzerner Zeitung
Acclaim for Wigmore Hall Showcase Recital, November 2013
“The young British pianist presented a truly outstanding recital at Wigmore Hall… She opened with a superfine account of Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales, the music’s lightness, poetry and elegance being admirably conveyed.” Robert Matthew Walker, Musical OpinionRead full review here
Acclaim for Washington DC Debut, October 2013
“After surfacing from her deep and much-acclaimed immersion in the music of Czech composer Leos Janacek a couple of years ago, the British pianist Ivana Gavric embarked on a new journey, this one into the music of Edvard Grieg. She was so intent on understanding the Norwegian composer that she even traveled to see the landscapes that inspired him — and the results were strikingly clear in her impressive, insightful U.S. debut Sunday at the Phillips Collection, where Grieg and Janacek formed the core of a program that linked late romanticism to 20th-century modernism.” Washington PostRead full review here
Acclaim for The Gilmore Festival Rising Stars Series USA recital, October 2013
“Second in the Gilmore Rising Stars Series this season was Ivana Gavric, gifted Sarajevo-born pianist who charmed a jammed Wellspring Theater audience Sunday afternoon. Unassailable technique and appealing stage presence earned her appreciative listeners.” M LiveRead full review here
Acclaim for Kings Place Festival, September 2011
“As demonstrated in her recent recording of the sonata From the Street, Gavric has Janacek’s music completely under her fingers: the plaintiveness, irascibility, humour and turbulence. There’s a quality to her sound, something peppery, dark and candid” The Independent
“the kaleidoscopic Violin Sonata, where Gavric and Thomas Gould sailed in splendour through its multiple moods, aggressive, hushed, folksy, or forlorn. Gavric shone best in the two-movement torso of the 1905 Piano Sonata, moulding its Czech- flavoured rhythms and motifs with a natural kick or easy flow, according to the moment. Fiery drama wasn’t forgotten, but nothing shrieked to excess.” The Times
Acclaim for Wigmore Hall debut, 15 July 2010
“She stamped her character on the evening from the off with a kaleidoscopic performance of Bartók’s Suite, Op 14. There’s a colloquial ease to Gavrić’s way with the Sprechstimme-like Eastern European melodies of Janácek, Bartók and the Prokofiev Sonata in D minor, Op 14; she has the musical equivalent to the gift of the gab… In the Rachmaninov she showed a different side: Gavrić the singer and poet. What a line she spun… Gavrić has a great career ahead of her, of that there is no doubt.” Theartsdesk
“Gavrić managed beautifully the sombre ‘orchestral’ colouring with drum rolls and trombone accents implied… In gesture as well as texture this music came from yet another space and the recitalist proved as well attuned to it as to everything else on her programme.” Musical Opinion
Acclaim for Janacek Festival, The Forge, 4-6 February 2011
“a highly enjoyable and fascinating mini-festival held in the intimate and acoustically pristine surrounds of The Forge. Gavrić matches her communicative pianistic technique to her endearing presence: a winning combination. One of the Festival’s highlights was Gavrić’s solo recital in which she performed Janáček’s three main piano works: the Piano Sonata 1.X.1905, the cycle On an Overgrown Path, and In the Mists. Gavrić found special delight of the radiant colours she drew from the piano: gentle touch, ability to delve into the inner life of the sound, to play from the heart, and, at times, to deliver a more robust dramatic and forthright projection. She was immersed in Janáček’s style, especially the folk elements, and the emphasis of dissonance in the melody to add poignancy. Compelling pianistic artistry… This was a fascinating weekend of discovery that attracted large audiences and whetted one’s appetite for more.” Classical SourceRead full review here
Critical acclaim for Chopin EDN1086
“(Ivana Gavric) shows how good taste and solid technical accomplishment can reap rewards. … stylish, unexaggerated readings.’
Gramophone _______________________________________________ “The early Mazurka in F minor demonstrates just how good Gavric is, Chopin’s more arresting chord progressions played teasingly and hesitantly, as if she’s making them up on the spot. The minor key numbers are especially effective, Op. 34’s moody C sharp minor Mazurka another standout. Gavric can also do folksy charm: Op. 33’s D major number is an unpretentious peasant stomp with a wonderful payoff.” The ArtsDesk _______________________________________________
Critical acclaim for Grieg Piano Works, CHRCD067
“Captivating disc…Gavric possesses what I can only describe as a beautiful musical personality” Editor’s Choice GramophoneRead full review here
“Ivana Gavrić here offers a much wider perspective in playing that is instinctively attuned to the moods and shades of the music.” The TelegraphRead full review here
Critical acclaim for ‘From the street’, Champs Hill Records CHRCD026
“it’s hardly surprising that Gavric offers hypnotically compelling accounts of the two Janacek works… After that, the first of Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales provides a welcome sense of exuberance though Gavric really excels in the more reflective dances filled with sensuous harmonies … Likewise, she delivers poetic and marvellously voiced playing in the slow movement of Prokofiev’s Second Piano Sonata.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2011
“the most impressive performance is that of Prokofiev’s Second Sonata. Gavric’s is, without question, the greatest and most revelatory performance of this extraordinarily original work I have ever heard. She is superlative here… She moulds an extraordinarily impressive statement on the composer’s behalf, which one could wait many years to hear, raising the stature of this work considerably. Her Ravel is on a similar level of excellence – beautifully expressive, driven by a sure understanding of what this music is about …A most impressive recital disc, outstandingly well recorded” (Outstanding)International Record Review, December 2011 Read full review here
“Ivana Gavric follows up her acclaimed debut disc with another well-imagined programme that embraces a variety of works all composed in the very early years of the 20th century… She highlights the Gallic taste and style of Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales and relishes the challenges and vibrant originality of Prokofiev’s Second Sonata. All in all, a highly appealing recital.” The Daily Telegraph, September 2011
“in both the Sonata and the miniatures of On an Overgrown Path she shows the same careful grading of Janácek’s textures, and perfect judgment of mood and manner that made her earlier performance so convincing.” The Guardian, September 2011
“The intimacy, finely honed nuance, conversational flow and subtle underlining of the composer’s harmonic surprises that Gavric brings to each of the short pieces comprising On an Overgrown Path prove more memorable still.” Gramophone, December 2011
“‘On An Overgrown Path’ in particular is absolutely mesmeric. The remaining works on the disc, by Ravel and Prokofiev, are played with a marvellous spontaneity and free-wheeling virtuosity that captures perfectly their varying moods. A hugely impressive release.” The Big Issue, November 2011
“The performances have clarity, subtlety and beautifully fluid phrasing… there’s a keen intelligence at work, as well as formidable technique.” The Times, September 2011
Critical acclaim for debut recording ‘In the Mists’ for Champs Hill Records CHRCD009
“her playing is altogether of an extraordinary calibre.” BBC Music Magazine, January 2011 Read full review here
“[Ivana Gavrić] is developing into one of the most important young pianists to have emerged in recent years… superbly played, with a poetry and refinement rarely encountered these days, either on or off a disc. There is no doubt in my mind that this CD could well mark the beginning of an outstanding international recording career: playing of this quality does not come along every day. Above all, Ivana Gavrić is a true musician.” (Outstanding)International Record Review, October 2010 Read full review here
“a hugely impressive CD… Gavrić commands a wonderfully wide range of keyboard colour. This is very high-class Schubert playing indeed.” Andrew Clements, The Guardian, January 2011 Read more here
“one of the most interesting and assured debuts on disc in 2010” Andrew McGregor on CD Review, BBC Radio 3
“a particularly poignant account of Janáček’s In the Mists. Her taste, lyrical allure and tonal glow suit Liszt’s Three Petrarch Sonnets well… beautifully expressed” The Daily Telegraph, August 2010 Read full review here
“Gavric’s playing throughout is notable for its beautiful sound, musical integrity and introspection.” Gramophone, November 2010 Read full review here
“Gavric seems drawn to the points at which sunshine and shadow converge… the phrasing carefully considered and imaginatively voiced.” The Independent on Sunday, August 2010 Read full review here
“A velvety touch, unerring sense of tempo and phrasing… a compelling recital” Classical Music MagazineRead full review here
Ivana is featured as ‘Rising Star’ in the BBC Music Magazine’s December 2010 issue.
Ivana is featured as Gramophone’s ‘One to watch’ in the September 2010 issue.
‘I had the opportunity to work with Ivana on Anthony Minghella’s film Breaking and Entering and I have discovered the most musical and lovely person with whom I have ever worked…she is an artist with most delicate taste…it was a joy and a treat to work with her.’ — Gabriel Yared, Composer – Oscar and Golden Globe winner for his score for The English Patient – Composer of numerous film scores including Betty Blue, Cold Mountain and The Talented Mr Ripley
In 2005, Ivana had the pleasure of working with the Oscar-winning director Anthony Minghella, who invited her to be a hand-double for the actress Juliette Binoche in the film Breaking and Entering. She was later asked to perform Bach on the soundtrack, recorded at Abbey Road Studios, where she had the great opportunity of working with the composer Gabriel Yared. The Soundtrack CD and film DVD are available for purchase. A few months later, Ivana was invited by the award-winning director Saul Dibb to play the role of the Czech pianist, Nina Glaserova, in the BBC2 adaptation of the Booker Prize-winning book The Line of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst. She performed Beethoven Sonata Les Adieux and Chopin Sonata No 2 live for the TV drama, which is now available on DVD.
“The idea for this album came about some years ago when I attended a performance of Haydn’s Piano Concerto No.11 in D. While reading the programme notes, I was struck by the suggestion that the concerto’s finale, Rondo all’ungarese, despite its title, was thought to be based on a Croatian or Bosnian folk melody. This got me very excited, due to my heritage: I was born in Sarajevo, a small city that is a melting-pot of cultures, nationalities, architecture, arts, history and humour. The region’s culture is incredibly rich and diverse, and I am always keen to celebrate this.” - Ivana Gavric
Haydn’s famous ‘Hungarian rondo’ finale to his piano concerto in D may not be Hungarian but from another part of the Habsburg empire - might its origins be Bosnian or Croatian? This concerto, together with solo piano works in homage to Haydn by leading French composers, frame the world premier recording of Cheryl Francis Hoad’s piano concerto, which takes the traditional Bosnian folk song Kad ja pođjoh na Bentbaša, Bosnian folk tales and the Haydn as its inspiration.
This album bridges the folk songs of Ivana’s childhood to the music of her professional life and reflects her varied heritage.
It has long been my desire to record works by Chopin, and more especially the Mazurkas. Chopin wrote the Mazurkas throughout his life and I like to think of them as his short, poignant diary entries. These miniatures have a rich emotional palette; they are wonderfully inventive in melody, harmony, texture, character, and tempo, while at the same time sharing the same DNA: the dance rhythms of Chopin’s native Poland.
Ivana's third album for Champs Hill Records is a very personal selection of repertoire including Grieg's Piano Sonata, the Ballade and a selection of his Lyric pieces and Slatter. There is also a unique epilogue - a new piece written for Ivana (the first of a set of four) by RPS Award-winning composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad.
'Captivating disc...Gavric possesses what I can only describe as a beautiful musical personality'
GramophoneRead full review here
'Gavric delivers an electrifying performance'
BBC Music MagazineRead full review here
'Ivana Gavrić here offers a much wider perspective in playing that is instinctively attuned to the moods and shades of the music.'
The TelegraphRead full review here
Ivana’s second album, From the street on Champs Hill Records is released in September 2011. On the disc, Ivana completes her survey of Janáček’s solo works and places them alongside works written at a similar time by composers that she holds dear: Ravel and Prokofiev.
Janacek: Sonata 1. X. 1905 From the streetOn an overgrown path
Ravel: Valses nobles et sentimentales
Prokofiev: Sonata No 2BBC Music Magazine
International Record ReviewThe Daily TelegraphThe Guardian
Ivana is delighted to release her debut disc In the Mists on Champs Hill Records in September 2010 which includes works by Schubert, Rachmaninov, Liszt and Janáček. The album has received critical acclaim in the press, including being selected as Instrumental Choice of the month in BBC Music Magazine and 'Oustanding' by International Record Review:
Instrumental Choice of the month
BBC Music Magazine
International Record ReviewThe GuardianThe Independent on SundayThe Daily TelegraphClassical Music Magazine
Concerto in F minor BWV1056 Beethoven
Concerto No 1 in C
Concerto No 2 in Bb
Concerto No 3 in C minor
Concerto No 4 in G
Concerto No 5 in Eb ‘Emperor’ Grieg
Concerto in A minor Haydn
Concerto in D Hob XVIII/11 Janáček
Capriccio for LH
Concerto No 1 in G minor Mozart
Concerto K271 in Eb ‘Jeunehomme’
Concerto K 466 in D minor
Concerto K 488 in A Prokofiev
Concerto No 1 Rachmaninov
Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini
Concerto No 2 in C minor Op 18 Ravel
Concerto in G Schumann
Concerto No 1 in A minor Shostakovich
Concerto No 2
For suggested solo recital programmes please get in touch via the Contact page.
Violin and Piano
Bach Sonata in C minor BWV 1017 Bartók 6 Romanian Dances, arr. Székely Beethoven Sonatas No 4 in A minor No 5 in F ‘Spring’ No 7 in C minor No 10 in G Brahms Sonata No 2 in A Hungarian Dances, arr. Joachim (selection) Bloch Nigun Debussy Sonata Dvořák Sonatina in G Op 100 Elgar Sonata Op 82 De Falla Suite Populaire Espagnole Franck Sonata Grieg Sonata No 2 in G Sonata No 3 in C minor Janáček Sonata Mozart Sonata in Bb, K454 Sonata in G, K301 Sonata in E minor, K304 Schumann, Clara Three Romances for Violin and Piano Op. 22 Ravel Sonata Tzigane Massenet Meditation from ‘Thaïs’ Montsalvatge Spanish Sketch Schubert Fantasie in C, D934 Turina Sonata No 1 in D Op 51
Cello and Piano
Beethoven Sonata No 5 in D Glazunov Chant du Ménestrel Janáček Pohadka Martinů Variations on a Slovak Theme Stravinsky Suite Italienne
Clarinet and Piano
Bartók 6 Romanian Dances, arr. Székely Bax Sonata Bernstein Sonata Brahms Sonata in F minor Sonata in Eb Debussy Première Rhapsodie Hindemith Sonata Ireland Fantasy-Sonata Lobanov Sonata Op 45 Milhaud Sonatine Mozart Concerto in A major Nielsen Concerto Poulenc Sonata Salter, Tim Abstractions II for Bass Clarinet Schoeck Sonata for Bass Clarinet Schumann Fantasiestűcke Watkins, Huw Chorale I and II Weber Grand Duo Concertante
Oboe and Piano
Bozza Fantasy Pastorale Colin Solo de Concours Damase Rhapsodie Dring, Madeleine Italian Dance Dutilleux Sonata Finzi Interlude Handel Sonata in F Kabalevsky Piano pieces (arr) Kalliwoda Morceau de Salon Op 228 Poulenc Sonata Ravel Piano Sonatina (arr) Saint-Saëns Sonata
Beethoven Piano Trio Op 1 No 1 in Eb Piano Trio Op 1 No 3 in C minor Piano Trio Op 70 No 1 in D ‘Ghost’ Brahms Piano Trio for clarinet and cello Op 114 Piano Quartet in C minor, Op 60 Two songs for voice, viola and piano Op 91 Dvořák Piano Trio in E minor ‘Dumky’ Janáček Capriccio Concertino Mendelssohn Piano Trio in C minor Mozart Piano Trio for clarinet, viola and piano ‘Kegelstatt’ Piano Quartet in G minor, K 478 Piano Quartet in Eb, K 493 Schubert Piano Trio No 2 in Eb Shostakovich Piano Trio No 2 Piano Quintet in G minor
Milhaud Scaramouche Mozart Adagio and Fugue Rachmaninov Fantaisie-Tableaux Op 5 (First Suite) Suite No 2 Op 17
Chopin: Mazurkas Op 17, 23 April 2017
Chopin: Mazurka Op 24 No 2
Grieg: ‘Butterfly’ from Lyric Pieces Op 43 No 1
Janáček: Violin Sonata 1st Movt – with Thomas Gould
Janáček: Concertino – with Aurora Orchestra soloists
‘Chopin’ album trailer
Schubert: Sonata in A minor D784, Allegro vivace
Rachmaninov: Prelude in D major Op 23 Recorded live at the Wigmore Hall