An award-winning pianist performs in Darlington this week for the first time.

Darlington Piano Society’s recital on Sunday, February 18, sees a Darlington debut for the London-based Romanian/Nigerian pianist, Rebeca Omordia.

Rebeca promotes African classical music in the UK and has been hailed as an 'African classical music pioneer' (BBC World Service) and 'a classical music game changer' (Classical Music magazine).

She is artistic director and founder of the world’s first ever African Concert Series in London, part of Wigmore Hall’s Family of Partners, and will be partnering the double bassist, Leon Bosch, in a programme of spirituals at the Wigmore on the day proceeding her Darlington engagement.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Rebeca Omordia

In recent seasons, Rebeca has toured Nigeria, performing both as a soloist and in collaboration with the MUSON Symphony Orchestra in Lagos and Abuja.

She has worked with an array of international musicians, including a three-year partnership with British cellist Julian Lloyd Webber, her partnership with South African double bass virtuoso Leon Bosch consisting of several recordings, and collaborations with cellist Raphael Wallfisch and pianist Mark Bebbington, with whom she has performed and recorded works by several British composers.

Rebeca Omordia brings her virtuosity to the fore in a programme that includes two works by English composer John Ireland and three works by Nigerian, Moroccan and Ghanaian composers, as well as the virtuosic challenge of Gaspard de la Nuit by Ravel.

Rebeca was born in Romania to a Romanian mother and a Nigerian father and, following graduation in Budapest, continued her studies in the UK at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and Trinity College of Music in London. She holds a Doctor of Music degree from the National University of Music in Bucharest, Romania.

Greg Johnson, society chairman, said: “Rebeca’s programme has great variety and, hopefully, will appeal to those who experience and love African music in genres other than the classical form.”

The recital takes place in Central Hall, the Dolphin Centre, at 3pm, on Sunday, February 18. Details of the full programme are available at Tickets can also be purchased through the website and will also be available at the door on the day, price £15, with under-25s free.