Russian National Orchestra

Duo Lebed

Duo Lebed
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Maria and Sofia Lebed, pianist and violist, became a prize-winning classical chamber ensemble in 1996, when they were 15-year-old students at Moscow’s Gnesin Academy of Music. Their triumphs continued in more than a dozen international competitions held in Russia and Europe. For the twin sisters it is possible their success as a duo began at birth, or perhaps as a result of their musician parents who introduced them to music at an early age. Their formal studies and duo performances began at the age of five.

Sofia Lebed, a graduate of the Moscow State Conservatory, where she was a student of Yuri Bashmet, is currently a violist in the Russian National Orchestra. She is a founding member of the RNO’s Four Strings. She has participated in several important international music projects, including the World Orchestra, led by Valery Gergiev, the Verbier Festival Orchestra under the direction of James Levine, and the Kremerata Baltica, under the direction of Gidon Kremer.

Maria Lebed completed her piano studies at Hanover’s University of Music, Drama and Media, one of Germany’s largest music academies, where she currently teaches. In addition to advanced graduate studies in Hanover, she has completed additional studies in German song interpretation at the University of Music in Saarland with its geographical and spiritual link to France and French influences. A frequent piano soloist specializing in Russian repertoire, Maria has appeared on stages in Europe and Asia. Her expert accompaniment of vocal and instrumental soloists has won prizes in Germany and resulted in a grant from the Yehudi Menuhin Organization.

Duo Lebed’s unique repertoire features standard compositions for viola and piano, as well as compositions and transcriptions written specifically for them. Their concert tours have included Germany, Italy and Russia. In 2011 Duo Lebed presented their United States debut concerts, offering master classes and commentary on their unique repertoire.