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available online > Dego-Leonardi Duo: Violin and Piano Recital



available online > Dego-Leonardi Duo: Violin and Piano Recital

Among the best Italian musicians of their generation, with a repertoire ranging from Baroque to contemporary music, Francesca Dego (violin) and Francesca Leonardi (piano) have been performing together worldwide for more than ten years.

To continue our celebrations for Women’s History Month, the virtuoso duo delighted us with a special concert (scroll down to enjoy its recording) from the Conservatory “Guido Cantelli” in Novara (Italy), featuring a selection of pieces by Mozart, Beethoven and three violin and piano paraphrases of classic opera arias by Rossini and Verdi.


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Mozart - Sonata for Piano and Violin No. 21 in E minor, K. 304

Beethoven - Sonata for Piano and Violin in F major, op. 24 (Spring Sonata)

Mario Castelnuovo Tedesco - Opera Pararaphrases

“Violetta” from La Traviata by G. Verdi

“Rosina” and “Figaro” from Il Barbiere di Siviglia by G. Rossini


CONCERT (via YouTube)

(originally broadcast on March 18, 2021)






Celebrated for her sonorous tone, compelling interpretations and flawless technique, Francesca Dego is one of the most sought-after young violinists on the international scene. Recently signed to Chandos Records, her first album on the label honors the legacy of Niccolò Paganini, with a recording of works inspired by the great violinist and performed on his violin, the fabled “Il Cannone”. Past releases include her highly acclaimed first concerto album featuring concertos by Paganini and Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari alongside the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Daniele Rustioni (2017), the recital disc Suite Italienne, as well as a complete survey of the violin sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven and of Paganini’s Caprices, all for Deutsche Grammophon.

Born in Lecco, Italy, to Italian and American parents, Francesca regularly appears with major orchestras worldwide, and recent and forthcoming highlights include performances with the Philharmonia, Hallé, Ulster, Royal Philharmonic and Royal Scottish National Orchestras, Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan and Tokyo Symphony Orchestras, Orchestre Philharmonique de Nice, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Teatro Carlo Felice Genova at St Petersburg’s renowned Stars of the White Nights festival, Teatro Regio di Torino, Orquestra de Sevilla and de la Comunitat Valenciana at Palau de les Arts, Auckland Philharmonia, Las Vegas Philharmonic, Santa Barbara Symphony, Het Gelders Orkest, and the Orkest van het Oosten.  

In Italy, this season’s highlights include opening the prestigious MITO Settembre Musica Festival with Milan’s “La Verdi” Orchestra in a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Souvenir d’un lieu cher, returns to the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini in Parma, and to the main season of the “La Verdi” orchestra. She will also appear in recital at the Festival Valle d’Itria, and perform at the Gravedona Chamber Music Festival, which was co-founded by Francesca in 2018.    

Her international career has allowed her to work alongside many esteemed conductors, Sir Roger Norrington, Fabio Luisi, Karen Durgaryan, Christopher Franklin, Lionel Bringuier, Dalia Stasevska,  Paul Goodwin, Christopher Hogwood, Yoel Levi, Donato Renzetti, Grant Llewellyn, Wayne Marshall, Gianluigi Gelmetti, Diego Matheuz, Shlomo Mintz, Gemma New, Alpesh Chauhan and Xian Zhang, just to name a few.

An outstanding collaborative artist, Francesca thrives in chamber settings, and she has performed with Salvatore Accardo, Alessandro Carbonare, Mahan Esfahani, Bruno Giuranna, Narek Hakhnazaryan, Piers Lane, Jan Lisiecki, Mischa Maisky, Antonio Meneses, Martin Owen, Roman Simovic and Kathryn Stott, as well as her regular recital partner, pianist Francesca Leonardi. Highlights of the 2020/21 season for the duo include performances at the Louvre in Paris, Lincoln Center New York, Washington DC, Siena, as well as the final concerts of their complete cycle of Beethoven’s violin sonatas at Unione Musicale, Torino.    

Francesca is the winner of numerous national and international competitions, including being the first Italian female prize-winner of the renowned “Paganini Competition” in Genoa since 1961 (2008) Furthermore, she was awarded the “Enrico Costa” prize as the youngest finalist. She was also selected to perform as soloist at the 2014 and 2015 Remembrance Day concerts in Rome, which were broadcast worldwide by RAI. In June 2014, she performed at Rio de Janeiro’s Teatro Municipal for the opening of the Football World Cup in Brazil. She is a frequent contributor to specialist music magazines, penning a monthly column for Suonare News among others, and has written articles and opinion pieces for the BBC and Classical Music Magazines, The Strad, Musical Opinion and Strings Magazine. Francesca has also recently published her first book, Tra le Note. Classica: 24 chiavi di lettura, with Mondadori in which she explores how classical music can be listened to and better understood today.  

Francesca is based in London and plays on a precious Francesco Ruggeri violin (Cremona 1697).




Pianist Francesca Leonardi is the first Italian female pianist to record for the prestigious Deutsche Grammophon label, recently completing a recording of the Beethoven Violin Sonatas with regular violin collaborator of fourteen years, Francesca Dego. In October 2018, the duo’s most recent disc was released worldwide, a project marking a journey through 20th century music inspired by Italy and including world premiere recordings of three works by Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco.   

Performing in public from a young age, pianist Francesca Leonardi regularly appears in prestigious venues and festivals around the world. In 2015 she was a part of the Remembrance Day performance in the Santa Cecilia Hall of the Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome, which broadcast worldwide through RAI. Other distinguished performances include Sala Verdi and Teatro dal Verme in Milan, Royal Albert Hall in London, “Les Flâneries Musicales” Festival in Reims, “Accademia Chigiana” in Siena and Politeama Theatre in Palermo for the Opening of the “Amici della Musica” season. Highlights of the last season included a trio tour and performances of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto alongside the Budapest MAV Orchestra, Laura Bortolotto and Amedeo Cicchese. The live recording of one of the performances was published as a supplement to the music magazine “Amadeus” in August 2018. In Summer 2019 Francesca completed a US tour that also included a performance at the prestigious Ravinia Festival in Chicago.   

From her earliest years Francesca has earned distinction in many national and international competitions, winning 14 first prizes, and in 2011, she was awarded the Phoebe Benham Junior Fellow in Piano Accompaniment at the Royal College of Music. She gave her solo début at the age of 16 performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 13 in C major with the Rosetum Orchestra. Since then, she has been invited to join many Italian and international orchestras as a soloist. She has toured Japan, China, the US, and South America, where she performed at the Colon Theatre in Buenos Aires, for the “Semana musical Llao Llao” in Bariloche, and Theatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro for the opening ceremony of the Football World Cup in 2014. Francesca is actively involved in the field of chamber music performance and regularly performs with instrumentalists and singers such as Bruno Giuranna, Laura Marzadori, Sonig Tchakerian, Susanne Hou, Nigel Clayton, Jacopo di Tonno, Martin Owen, Alfredo Zamarra, Laura Bortolotto, Andrea Cicchese, Andrea Giuffredi and Andrea Oliva.

Francesca has performed in many live broadcasts on RAI Radio and TV, Tv2000, Radio Classica, the Italian Swiss Radio, the Vatican Radio and selections from her CDs were included in the soundtrack of the 2008 film “The beautiful Truth” by prize-winning director Steven Kroschel. Her first solo recording, Debussy’s Second Book of Preludes and Chopin’s Andante Spianato e Grande Polonaise, was released by “Classica Viva” Musical Editions in May 2007.   

Born in Milan in 1984, Francesca began studying the piano at the age of three under the guidance of Graziella Bianchi and Paolo Bordoni. She graduated from the Milan Conservatoire with top marks, cum laude, and special mention in 2004. She continued her studies at the Musical Academy in Pescara, at the Chigiana Academy in Siena and at the Royal College of Music in London where she was awarded both a Master’s in Performance and an Artist Diploma in Piano Accompaniment with Distinction in 2012, under Nigel Clayton and Roger Vignoles, and generously supported by The Gordon Calway Stone Memorial Award.   

From a very early age Francesca showed enthusiasm and passion for teaching, and following this passion she has become a chamber music tutor at the “Cantelli” Conservatoire in Novara, Italy.



Data: Gio 18 Mar 2021

Organizzato da : Embassy of Italy, IIC Washington

Ingresso : Libero