Edit ModuleShow Tags

Whatever Lola Wants

San Diego Magazine talks with pianist Lola Astanova


(page 1 of 2)

Lola Astanova and Julie Andrews

Lola Astanova and Julie Andrews

Lola Astanova is one of the world’s most sought-after pianists, and set to headline the San Diego Symphony’s 2012 Donor Appreciation Concert on August 30. There’s still time to donate and get tickets. San Diego Magazine talks with the musician about life lessons, haute couture, and her ‘deeply emotional’ style.

SDM: You are one of the world’s most accomplished pianists, and you’re also quite beautiful. Has anyone ever told you that you look like Victoria Beckham (aka Posh Spice)?  

LA: Thank you, that’s very kind, indeed. Actually, no, I haven’t heard comparisons to Posh Spice, but I’m flattered because I used to love Spice Girls.

SDM: You’ve developed a reputation for being a fashionista. Who are some of your favorite designers?

LA: I do love fashion and believe that some extraordinary artists work in the field. I love the boldness and creativity of Tom Ford, Emilio Pucci, and Alexander McQueen and the unsurpassed elegance of Chanel and Oscar de la Renta

SDM: Is it more difficult to play the piano in high heels?

LA: No, for me, it’d be more difficult to play in flats. (Laughs) In fact, I don’t own a single pair of flats.

SDM: Has your style been influenced by your travels? What are some of your favorite cities for fashion?

LA: Yes, travel definitely influences one’s style and taste. And for me the two most exhilarating fashion cities are New York and Milan.

SDM: Who are some of your favorite composers? 

LA: My favorites change all the time, but Rachmaninoff and Chopin are always among them.

SDM: You were born in the former Soviet Union and started playing the piano at age 6. What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned along the way?

LA: If I had to pick one lesson, it would be summarized in one word: patience. Which, of course, happens to be my least favorite word in the world.

SDM: You’ve collaborated with the likes of acclaimed pianist Byron Janis and San Diego Symphony music director Jahja Ling. What are some of the take-aways from those experiences?  

LA: It is very rare to find a conductor who can make the separation between soloist and orchestra disappear, so that they function like one. Every time I play with Mr. Ling I am amazed at his ability to do that. As for Mr. Janis, one of the biggest lessons I learned from him is not to have just one dream, but rather to have dreams.

The 2012 Donor Appreciation Concert is open to anyone who has made a donation to the San Diego Symphony in the last year. Anyone who decides to donate before August 24 will receive up to eight tickets. Contact 619.615.3908 or visit sandiegosymphony.com.

Learn more about Lola at lolaastanova.com or @FollowLola on Twitter.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

It's a Thing: Too Many Free Lunches

What we're talking about in the office this week

3 Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in San Diego

Where to go green in honor of Ireland’s patron saint this Saturday

7 Ways to Celebrate International Women’s Day in San Diego

Opportunities to #PressForProgress aren't limited to March 8, they're available all month long
Edit Module

Subscribe to the Blog

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Enter a Drawing You Could Actually Win

There are more than 1,700 prizes in the Dream House Raffle

Buy a Raffle Ticket, Win This Rare Sports Car

Donate to a good cause to seriously upgrade your ride
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. Vote Now for San Diego's Best Restaurants 2018
    From burritos to bottomless mimosas, you choose San Diego’s best eats and drinks in 90 categories
  2. 15 Coolest Jobs in San Diego and How to Get Them
    We asked 15 San Diego professionals with the coolest jobs in town how they landed their gigs—and how we could steal them
  3. First Look: Cloak & Petal
    The owners of Tajima bring Japanese small plates to Little Italy with Cloak & Petal
  4. 31 Best Places to Live in San Diego
    Five local homeowners share their advice, tips, and tricks on how they sealed the deal
  5. Green Rush: Inside San Diego's Emerging Cannabis Industry
    Marijuana's legal. How did it go from evil death drug to medical miracle and billion-dollar industry?
  6. First Look: Bivouac Ciderworks
    A new craft cidery opens in North Park, designed for the outdoors person in all of us
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module