Saturday September 9 2023, 11:00 AM

La Fiammata

Cecilia's Retreat
Saturday 9 September – 11:00 AM

$35 in advance. Admission by advance reservation, please email


Charissa Vandikas, piano

Linda Ruan, piano


Musique Royale welcomes piano duo La Fiammata to Cecilia’s Retreat in Mahone Bay to perform Love Letters To Humanity, featuring pianists Charissa Vandikas and Linda Ruan on Saturday September 9 at 11 am. The featured program highlights a diverse selection of works based on the warmth and dynamism of friendship and community, featuring composers from Beethoven to Corigliano, Canadian favorites Elizabeth Raum, Gary Kulesha, Alice Ping Yee Ho, and a brand new work by Kelly-Marie Murphy. The music is woven with anecdotes to explore the strength of human connections over time and tell the story of La Fiammata’s near-decade-old friendship.

About La Fiammata

Praised for their “dizzying musicality” (Süddeutsche Zeitung), Canadian piano duo La Fiammata are the Second Prize winners, the Henle Urtext Prize winners and the youngest piano duo finalists of the 70th ARD International Music Competition. Since their formation in 2015, La Fiammata has quickly emerged as one of the most promising young duos in the world, garnering top prizes at the 2021 Lancaster International Chamber Music Competition, the 2019 Suzana Szörenyi International Piano Duo Competition, and at the 2018 Northwest International Piano Ensemble Competition. As the Grand Prix Winners of the Canadian Music Competition, La Fiammata made its orchestral debut with Orchestre de la Francophonie and conductor Nicolas Ellis in 2017. Since then, they’ve worked with conductors Johannes Debus, Matthias Foremny, and Radoslaw Szulc, performing with orchestras in Europe and North America. These include the Munich Chamber Orchestra, the Munich Radio Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Royal Conservatory Orchestra.

La Fiammata have been featured on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s In Concert, where radio host Paolo Pietropaolo attested that “[one] can practically hear the electricity crackling between [the two pianists].” They have also been featured on BR24 Rundschau (Bavarian Radio), Art Channel Romania, and EnjoyTV Romania. The duo was named the RBC Stockey Young Artists at the Festival of the Sound and the Youth Ambassadors for the 60th anniversary of the Canadian Music Competition.

La Fiammata are eager to explore the potential of the piano duo instrumentation while supporting the Canadian voices of their generation. In May of 2019, they won a commission sponsored by the Ontario Arts Council and premiered “density swells upclose in breath” by Canadian composer Julia Mermelstein. They’re honoured to have given among the first performances of works for two pianos and four hands by Vassos Nicolaou, Sebastian Androne, and Stefan Young.

The duo was formed in Toronto where they were both full scholarship students of The Glenn Gould School. During this time, they primarily worked with James Anagnoson of the renowned Anagnoson-Kinton Duo. They have also received coachings from Anagnoson-Kinton Duo, Emanuel Ax, Hung-Kuan Chen, John O’Conor, and Jean Saulnier. Currently, Ms. Ruan studies at the Tianjin Juilliard School with Dr. Xiaohan Wang and Ms. Vandikas at the University of Montréal with Charles Richard-Hamelin and Henry Kramer.

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