Lunchtime Music: Saint-Saëns, Kirchner, Strauss

Lunchtime Music: Saint-Saëns, Kirchner, Strauss

Lunchtime Music

Date and time
03 Oct 2022 (1:05pm - 2:00pm)

Recital Hall, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

200 Jennens Road, B4 7XR



Booking Information

Guide dogs are welcome at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire venues. If you wish to bring a Guide Dog or wheelchair, please let the Events Office know by calling 0121 331 5909.

Alexander Hucknall in formal wear cradling French horn

Alexander Hocknull French horn
Joanne Sealey piano

Saint-Saëns Romance in F, Op.36
Kirchner Lamento
Franz Strauss Theme and Variations, Op.13

Mario Bobotov piano

Beethoven Sonate op.13 No.8, Grande Sonate Pathetique - Grave, Allegro di molto e con brio; Adagio Cantabile; Rondo
Scriabin Sonata No.4 

Alex Hocknull began playing the French horn aged nine, however, by the age of 12 illness had forced him to stop playing completely. It was not until 2017, after returning from studying politics at Lancaster University, that a chance encounter with an inspiring piano teacher encouraged Alex to pick up the horn once again. This led to decide to pursue a career in music and now he is in the final year of his undergraduate degree at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. 

Alex’s recent highlights include performing at the Three Choirs Festival, playing with Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and a residency with the Chipping Campden Festival Orchestra. Next year, Alex is making his concerto debut performing Richard Strauss’s 2nd Horn Concerto. 

Alex is also an award-winning chamber musician, performing regularly with his brass ensemble Second City Brass.

Mario Bobotsov was born on 14 February, 2002 in Sofia, Bulgaria and is currently studying for a bachelor's degree in piano at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire with a full scholarship in the class of Prof. Pascal Nemirovski. He graduated from the National School of Music in Sofia, Bulgaria where he started his piano education at the age of six in the class of Milka Miteva.

Mario has been awarded the Denis Matthews Memorial Trust Scholarship Award and Miss Bowen Challenge Cup (2022). He is an eight-time winner of the “Lydia Kuteva” Memorial Scholarship, established by Prof. Pavlina Dokovska, USA and a laureate of the Yordan Kamdzhalov Foundation, Bulgaria for 2020 and 2021.

In 2020 he won a full scholarship from the American Foundation for Bulgaria in the name of Prof. Pavlina Dokovska and from the International Keyboard Institute and Festival Manhattan, New York.

Mario is a laureate of the following National and International Piano Competitions:

  • First Prize - Denis Matthews Piano Prize 2022, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.
  • First Prize - Winifred Micklam Prize 2022, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.
  • Third Prize - London Classical Music Competition 2022, category Piano, Youth Artist.
  • First Prize - 4th International Music Performance Competition “Music Prospect”, 2021.
  • First Prize - 9th International competition JSFest 2021 Instrumental Music Competition.
  • First Prize - Millersville Keyboard Division Piano Competition, Pennsylvania, USA, 2021.
  • Third Prize - Lancaster International Piano Festival, USA, 2020.
  • First Prize - Classic Music Online Competition Perusia Harmonica, Perugia, Italy, 2020.
  • First Prize - 23rd International Competition "Hopes, Talents, Masters” – 2019, Dobrich, Bulgaria.
  • Special 1st Prize - 29th FLAME Competition 2018, Paris, France.
  • 1st Prize and “Premio Virtuoso” - 2nd International Competition "Sante Centurione" 2018, Chieti, Italy.
  • 3rd Prize - 48th International Competition “VIRTUOSI PER MUSICA DI PIANOFORTE“ 2015, Usti nad Labem, Czech Republic.
  • 3rd Prize - 5th National Piano Competition “Mila Mihaylova” 2016, Varna, Bulgaria.
  • 3rd Prize - 20th International Competition “Hopes, Talents, Masters” 2016, Dobrich, Bulgaria.
  • 3rd Prize - International Competition “New Pianists” 2014, Sofia, Bulgaria.
  • 1st Prize - International Competition “Young Pianists” 2012, Vranja, Serbia.
  • 1st Prize at International Competition “Young pianists from Europe” 2012, Gevgelija, Macedonia.

Mario has participated in masterclasses with Prof. Pascal Nemirovski (UK), Prof. Pavlina Dokovska (USA), Prof. Fali Pavri, Prof. Milena Mollova (Bulgaria), Prof. Katarzyna Popowa-Zydron (Poland), Prof. Giuliano Mazzoccante (Italy), Prof. Victor Chuchkov (Bulgaria), Prof. Ivo Kalchev (USA), Prof. Bozhidar Noev (Austria), Prof. Adrian Oetiker (Germany), Prof. Massimo Gon (Italy), Prof, Claudius Tanksi (Austria) and Prof. Michal Tal (Israel).

Forthcoming events in Lunchtime Music

Forthcoming dates include: