Four hands, one feeling

Carles & Sofia have been playing piano together for 3 decades around the world

Carles and Sofia in a recital at Carnegie Hall in New York
Carles and Sofia in a recital at Carnegie Hall in New York
1 AUG 2016
by

Four hands, one feeling, one passion. Music makes them special, makes them unique. Carles and Sofia have made the piano the driving force of their lives. These musicians from Girona (Spain) began their career together 30 years ago, playing piano four hands. They follow the same rhythm at once. Their fingers glide over the keys and nail the notes at the same instant. Something almost impossible and surprisingly magical. When they jump on stage and start playing, their souls merge, they feel the same way together, breathe at once, up to the point they make the audience feel there is just one person performing.

Widely known by piano and good music lovers worldwide, Carles & Sofia is the name of the piano duo formed by Carles Lama and Sofia Cabruja. They started playing together in 1987 and since then, professionally and sentimentally attached, they’ve turned the piano into their life and passion. Their recitals for four hands have been heard across the world.

They met in Girona, their hometown. It was Sofia who "found" him first during a recital at the Conservatory of Girona. Among the various performances that day, there was Carles playing a Chopin waltz.

He was just a teenager and Sofia was astonished by the amazing skills of the young boy. A few years later, they met again by chance in some music lessons in Girona and from then on, they became inseparable. They continued their studies at L'Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris and later at the Hartt School in Connecticut. In 1987 they started performing in public as a duo and since then their professional and artistic career has toured the world, stepping onto some of the most important stages in the world.

In February 2011 they were able to fulfill one of their greatest dreams in their debut at Carnegie Hall in New York, the “mecca of dreams” of any artist. In 2001 they were awarded an honorary distinction from UNICEF from the hands of her Royal Highness Margarita de Borbón, for a series of benefit concerts for needy children worldwide.

They were also recognized as "Steinway Artists", distinction which praises their excellence as artists, as it equates them to pianists and legends such as Sergei Rachmaninov, Alicia de Larrocha, Artur Rubinstein, among others.

Last year, the Rotary International Foundation honored them by appointing them "Paul Harris Fellow" after their concert to support the charitable work of a project led by the Rotary Clubs in Barcelona.

The artists are now in one of the most important moments of their career, since they now combine maturity, acquired knowledge, the experience of many years on stage, recognition by the public and the number of projects already carried out.

In 2016 only, they premiered at Carnegie Hall in New York the transcription for piano four hands from the famous Goyescas, exactly one hundred years after Enrique Granados premiered it at the Metropolitan Opera in the same city.

This year they have also seen fulfilled another of their greatest dreams: to perform the transcription of Mozart's Requiem. They did so in a tour of several concerts. They have also started a project that has always seduced them, based on the transcriptions of Lieder, one of the most refined, exquisite and nuanced musical genres. These musicians, always insatiable and tireless of projects, will develop next September another one of the many they have in mind. However, this project in particular means something very special for Carles and Sofia. It’s “The Four Hands Revolution”, which will be carried out next year, coinciding with their 30th anniversary year as a duo. The project aims to illustrate the new frontiers of the four hands performance: that unique way to play, that deep mutual understanding, that sensibility, that emotional synchrony… It also wants to reflect the new repertoire that has crossed borders, and of which they have been the creators.

Carles & Sofia is the personal brand of these musicians and entrepreneurs, who have the ability to promote their music through various projects that they devise and produce. They are also founders of various festivals and creators of a record label. All this work was something they needed to extend to young artists who are just starting. They did so through "Music Talent Lab", a series of seminars and consulting sessions where Carles and Sofia exercise as mentors to help emerging talents to pursue and achieve success in their career. Another project that clearly bears his stamp is Concerts4good, which supports charities to raise funds. An initiative where, as usual, the music is the leitmotif.

So they are: tireless, disciplined, perfectionists, though especially passionate about their profession and life in general. Lovers of the little pleasures. People full of daydreams, aspirations and ambitions, which make their dreams come true. And by projecting these dreams and putting them on the ground, working in them with passion, they get them to come true.

Carles & Sofia is music, is a way of life, on and off stage.