Xenia Pestova Bennett
"Powerhouse of contemporary keyboard repertoire"
Xenia Pestova Bennett is an innovative performer and educator. Described as “a powerhouse of contemporary keyboard repertoire” (Tempo), “stunning” (Wales Arts Review), “ravishing” (Pizzicato) and “remarkably sensuous” (New Zealand Herald) in the international press, she has earned a reputation as a leading interpreter of uncompromising repertoire alongside masterpieces from the past.
Xenia’s commitment to promoting music by living composers inspired her to commission dozens of new works and collaborate with major innovators in contemporary music. Her widely acclaimed recordings of core piano duo works of the Twentieth Century by John Cage and Karlheinz Stockhausen with Pascal Meyer are available on four CDs for Naxos Records. Her solo recordings of works for piano and electronics include “Shadow Piano” (Innova), a “terrific album of dark, probing music” (Chicago Reader).
Xenia's recent offerings include the complete piano works by Gayle Young (Farpoint) hailed as "a triumph" (John Eyles, All About Jazz) and "Gold.Berg.Werk" (Ergodos), a reimagining of J.S. Bach's Goldberg Variations described as "a sci-fi journey in the direction of 1741” (Luke Clancy, RTE Lyric FM).
Xenia's own compositions are available on Diatribe Records and TakuRoku. Her full-length album "Atomic Legacies" features Ligeti Quartet and the Magnetic Resonator Piano. Highlighted in Bandcamp's "Best of Contemporary Classical" in 2020, the album was described as "boldly conceived and brilliantly realised... a foretaste of things to come" in The Wire, "intoxicating, extraordinarily eerie and evocative” (Bernard Clarke, RTE LyricFM), "melancholy... heart-swells and proper feelings" (The Quietus) and "a nuclear musical reaction that produces that great, irradiated beauty" (Tom Service, BBC Radio 3). Xenia's subsequent digital EP "Atonal Electronic Chamber Music for Cats" takes an unexpected turn-around, using vintage synthesizers in an exploration of 1990's techno-art-pop nostalgia.