June 26th saw Martina Filjak perform the 2nd concerto by Saint Saens at Theatre Schweinfurt in Germany, along with the Staatskapelle Halle led by Josep Caballe Domenech. A rave review was published at the Main-Post following the concert, stating that ''... a mixture of passion and feeling....the Croatian pianist demonstrated the particularly expressive side of this work. Already the very first notes showed us the direction this was going to take: into a highly charged and tension-filled dialogue between the piano and orchestra. While the orchestra produced bell-like sounds Filjak allowed her piano part to flourish in a huge variety of colours, painted with a broad brush..... Filjak's virtuosity and uncanny sensitivity in her fingertips were particularly impressive. She has that certain something, that empowers her to transmit musical ideas.'
Following the first encounter with La Verdi in December 2014, this past weekend Martina returned to Milan's Auditorium for two performances of Sgambati's Piano Concerto with Orchestra Sinfonica La Verdi and Gaetano d'Espinosa:
Martina completed a one month tour of the US that included a recital at the Boston Conservatory and concerto performances with the Pro Musica Chamber Orchestra and David Danzmayr; the Phoenix Symphony and Tito Munoz; the San Antonio Symphony and Akiko Fujimoto, performing 2. concerto by Saint Saens as well as the 2nd concerto by Rachmaninoff.
All the performances were warmly received by the audience and the critics; the Boston Musical Intelligencer wrote of her recital performance that: 'it was plenty Romantic as well as mysterious-sounding....projected a near trancelike state' while the Columbus Examiner noted that the Saint Saens concerto was a 'brilliant showpiece for Filjak...her artistic strenght lies in touch....her encore, Pärt's 'Für Alina' imparted such reverent stillness to the room that not a breath was heard, not a movement seen, in the audience'.
While in San Antonio, the reviewer noted that: 'As much imagination as Saint-Saëns put into his concerto, the piece requires equal imagination from the pianist. Croatian Filjak matched the composer idea for idea with her clean technique, shifting tempos and varied style changes.....her performance was sophisticated and stylish, winning immediate approval of the audience.'
During the autumn months of 2015, Martina held a number of performances as well as several debuts.
On November 15th and 16th she returned to Halle for 2 performances of Beethoven's 5th Piano Concerto with the Staatskapelle Halle led by Hermann Bäumer. She subsequently performed the 2nd Piano Concerto by Rachmaninoff at the Antalya Piano Festival accompanied by the Mediterranean Philharmonic Orchestra and Gürer Aykal.
December 8th and 9th saw her jumping into 2 performances of Schumann's Piano Concerto with the Dortmund Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Sebastian Lang-Lessing on a 48 hour notice; it was her first ever appearance on the stage of Dortmund's Konzerthaus.
On December 16th and 18th she performed the Piano Concerto in G major by Maurice Ravel alongside the Bremen Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Markus Poschner. A reviewer noted that: '' Ravel's Piano Concerto was a musically deep interpretation: the pianist Martina Filjak was the evening's highlight. She approached the work with a poetic touch and immaculate clarity, offering French finesse and whimpers of devilish Jazz. Filjak demonstrated readiness for both a perfumed legato and thunderous Basses in the left hand. A fabulous performance''.
During May and June Martina Filjak performed the 2nd concertos by Brahms and Rachmaninoff in Aachen and Kaiserslautern. The concerts were warmly received both by the audience and the press.
End of June, Martina performed the 2nd Piano Concerto by Rachmaninoff in Kaiserslautern. On that occasion the reviewer of the 'Rheinpfalz' noted: ''She delivered big cinematic emotions without ever becoming 'kitschy'. Pathos and Emphasis were consciously employed, but without any exaggeration.... a melancholy of disturbingly sweet beauty demonstrated by Martina Filjak with huge sensibility and fantastic technique.''