18th-century Bohemia is the inspiration behind this program marking the Tafelmusik debut of Bulgarian violinist and guest director Zefira Valova.

Concertmaster of the high-octane period orchestra Il Pomo D’Oro, Valova is featured in the energetic Violin Concerto in A Major by the prolific Bohemian violinist František Benda. Hear for yourself why Valova’s new recording of this music shot to the top of the classical charts. 

Opening with the Symphony in D Minor by the Bohemian/German composer Carl Stamitz, the Bohemian connection continues with Haydn, who spent formative summers in Bohemia as a young man in the employ of Count Morzin. Tafelmusik’s own Keiran Campbell takes centre stage as soloist in Haydn’s show-stopping Cello Concerto in C Major.  

Our performances and recordings of Haydn symphonies are widely considered “definitive” (BBC Music Magazine) as our concert concludes with the powerful Symphony no. 44 in E Minor, or “Trauersymphonie”—a work so intensely personal that Haydn requested that the slow movement be performed at his own funeral. 

Directed by Zefira Valova, violin

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Running Time
2 hours
Style of Music
Classical (orchestra)

Jeanne Lamon Hall, Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre

April 19, 2024 8:00 pm
April 20, 2024 8:00 pm
April 21, 2024 3:00 pm

Zefira Valova

Guest Director and violinist

Bulgarian violinist Zefira Valova is a leading specialist in early music, performing as a soloist, leader, concertmaster and chamber musician. Following studies at Sofia’s National Academy of Music and at the Amsterdam Conservatory, she went on to serve as leader of numerous ensembles, including the Helsinki Baroque Orchestra, Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra, Arcangelo, and the European Union Baroque Orchestra. She has been Artistic Director of the Sofia Baroque Arts Festival since 2006.

Zefira has been concertmaster of the Italian period ensemble Il Pomo d’Oro since 2015, working under Maxim Emelyanychev and Francesco Corti. She has recorded with the ensemble as soloist, conductor, and concertmaster on multiple releases for the Aparte, Deutsche Grammophon, and Alpha labels. 

Awards include first prize in the José Herrando Baroque Violin Competition (2020), Musician of the Year for artistic activity awarded by the Bulgarian National Radio (2017), and the Golden Quill Award (2021). 

Highlights of the 2022/23 season have included leading il Pomo d’Oro in concerts with countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński and with mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato throughout Europe and North America. 


Directed by Zefira Valova, violin


František Benda Concerto for violin in A Major, L2.13 (Zefira Valova, soloist)

Carl Stamitz Symphony in D Minor, op. 15, no. 3

Haydn Concerto for violoncello in C Major (Keiran Campbell, soloist)

Haydn Symphony no. 44 “Trauersymphonie

Zefira Valova’s performance has been generously supported by Bojan Pavlovic

Season Presenting Sponsor