Meet Clara Birch, a Danish singer-songwriter who captivates audiences with her beautiful, strong, and touching songs. Her honest lyrics, sung in Danish, resonate deeply with listeners, as she sings about love, vulnerability, and dreams. This episode of Low-Fi Backstage is dedicated to Clara Birch, an artist that truly connects with her audience.
It started with Chopin
On a gloomy November night Irina Hayrapetyan brought a little magic into a cozy apartment in Havenstad. Guests gathered, wine was poured, lights were dimmed and, as surprisingly many things in life, it started with Chopin.
The concert allowed the audience to see the musical side of Irina, her style, and her inspirations. Yet, it also gave an insight into her as a person. In many ways the concert reflected her own life adventures that brought her here.
Irina was born and raised in a musical family in Yerevan. Her mother is a violinist and a conductor. On the paternal side, everyone excluding her father are musicians. Despite this, he also had strong musical abilities and always joked that Irina inherited her talent only from him, and not from anyone else. Being surrounded by music it is no wonder that Irina showed talent from the earliest days. At the age of two her father built her a special chair so she could sit next to the high-raised piano. Musical education followed, as at six she started attending the Sayat-Nova music school. She was trained as a concert pianist and chamber musician in Armenia and Denmark. At fourteen she won her first prize in a Chopin competition for young musicians.
Irina’s repertoire is quite wide. She has a special approach to all composers, but calls Bach, Chopin, Liszt or Rachmaninov her greatest musical authorities. Yet Irina is more than a classical musician. The influence of the music culture of both Armenia and Denmark made her comfortable in a variety of styles. During her concerts, she seamlessly flows from one genre to the other. Irina strives to popularize Armenian music among the Danish audience – and there is a lot to promote. As a country with one of the longest, unbroken historical records, Armenia is rich in history and rich in musicians. The music of Armenian composers such as Arno Babaganian or Aram Khachaturian is something that any classical music lover should know. By drawing from her many sources of inspiration, Irina offers her listeners something fresh and unique. This is what she is looking for – new ideas and originality.
After arriving in Denmark, Irina studied at the Royal Danish Conservatory of Music. Currently she is working at the Royal Theatre. While family and top-notch education play a very important role in one’s career, it is not everything. Neither this nor raw talent will take you far if you do not develop yourself professionally and as a person – says Irina. When performing music, the artist always demonstrates his inner world and the richer it is, the better. What may be even more important is the connection with the audience. Without contacting them, you will not be able to fulfill your role as a concert pianist. This might be the reason why Irina found our little low-fi family so attractive. In the end where could you connect better rather than among friends in the comfort of one’s living room.