Alina Israilian is a 17 year old pianist who has already achieved what many pianists can only dream of throughout their careers. That is to play at Carnegie Hall. She was already able to accomplish this feat at a young and tender age of eleven years old. According to her, it was everything that she’d dreamed of in one place.
This isn’t the only success that she has gained. She has also been a recipient of the McGill Conservatory Vera Black Scholarship for the past two years. Despite all of her accomplishments and success, Alina still remain who she is till today. Her warm, welcoming smile and jovial demeanor have not changed one bit. She was born in Toronto and raised in Laval, Montreal. At just 4 years old, Alina attended her first piano lesson under Tina Kakabedze. When she was 7 years old, she took part in her first piano competition. Two years after that, she managed to win the second place prize in the 9-year-old category at the Canada Music Competition. During the 2006 World Piano Competition in Cincinnati, she came in at second place, but was still given the prize to play at Carnegie Hall. “It was very exciting. I don’t think I was aware that I was playing at Carnegie Hall, but now that I look back, it’s, ‘Oh my God, I played there,’” she recalls.
The best part of it all is that she was able to take some master classes from renowned pianist Anton Kuerti and Prof. Marc Durand. Her musical heroes include pianists such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Martha Argerich and Jan Lisiecki. Her favourite pieces to play are those from the Romantic Era. She also mention that she recently “started to expand my view on classical music, from the Classical period” after playing Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto. Although her favorite piece to play is still Chopin’s Etude No. 3, she stated that she would like to learn to play Brahms’ First Piano Concerto as well.
Alina says that she owes it to her parents, who are her inspiration. “They encourage me a lot. They’re great supporters. They just love music. We attend concerts together, we share opinions on concerts, everything,” she added. She says that her father always reminds her to live in the moment and take advantage of the time she has presently: “When there’s an opportunity, I have to open my eyes…if I really want something, I should go get it.” For the full story, you can read it here.