Monday’s Music Moves Me: The Incredible Sofya Tyurina

Source: YouTube

Two weeks ago I introduced you to Anastasia Tyurina, a tremendous 11-year-old Russian balalaika player. At that time, I also found a young woman named Sofya Tyurina (who I thought might be a cousin but isn’t, they just have the same last name, though they are friends), who is an equally talented 13-year-old saxophone player who’s been playing since she was five and who likewise blew me away. She started out playing soprano saxophone (mostly because it was small enough for her), but has become equally adept at alto and tenor sax. She plays primarily classical music and jazz standards, and I swear, she’s improvising already. Here are ten by Ms. Sofya. The commentary will be limited, because most of the descriptions are written in Russian, which I’m not conversant in.

  1. "Lullaby of Birdland": Written by George Shearing. She’s five (5!) years old here.

  2. "Symphojazz": Here she plays with Mikhail Ivanov on piano, Andrei Ivanov on bass, and 12-year-old Rostislav Mudritsky on the button accordion. This is from the TV show "Blue Bird," a sort of "Russia’s Got Talent" with young musicians. She’s 8 here.

  3. "Summertime" (Gershwin): More from "Blue Bird." 8 again. Amazing to see how the musicians playiung behind her get into it. She finishes the song at about 3:00, and at 4:00 she plays a short burst of "Flight of the Bumble Bee" by Rimsky-Korsakov. Unless you speak Russian, you might want to jump ahead…

  4. "Tom & Jerry"/"The Pink Panther": She was about 10 another time she was on "Blue Bird," here playing tenor sax, which is a little too big for her, but she handles it like a pro. From what I was able to glean from the subtitles, she hadn’t been playing tenor too long. (The fingering is pretty much the same as that of the soprano.)

  5. "Uletai (Stranger In Paradise)"/"Take Five": This was taped about a year ago, so she’s 11 or 12 here. She’s playing with Denis Matsuyev on piano, Andrey Ivanov on bass, Alexander Zinger on drums, and Arkady Shilkloper on French horn. This is Matsuyev’s anniversary concert.

  6. "Blue Monk": Here she is at 10 playing a concert in Chardim with Sergey Tkachev on guitar.

  7. "Saber Dance" (Khatchaturyan): From 2018. Alexandra Dovgan (I believe she’s 12) plays the piano.

  8. "Little Csardas": By Pedro Itturalde. The date on this is 2021, but it looks like she might be younger. In any event, she plays the alto saxophone here. No idea who the orchestra is.

  9. "Storm" (Vivaldi): She’s 11 here. Not sure who the accompanist is.

  10. "Tango Club" (Molinelli): This was her seventh-grade recital at the Gnesins Russian Academy of Music, where she was named "Best Student of 2020." She plays alto saxophone here. Her accompanist is Alexey Rasinsky.

OK… here’s her YouTube page and her Instagram. I hope you’re as impressed with Sofya Tyurina as I am. That’s Monday’s Music Moves Me for July 26, 2021.

Monday’s Music Moves Me is sponsored by Cathy, Alana, and Stacy, so be sure and visit them, where you can also find the Linky for the other participants.

15 thoughts on “Monday’s Music Moves Me: The Incredible Sofya Tyurina

  1. Hi John…. my computer still hates me or I’m just dumb and I cannot add 2 & 2! 😦 Anyway, My hubby loves the Pink Panther and he even came in here to listen to it. hahaha So you have more listeners this week for sure! Have a great day and loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee your playlist. Have a great day.


  2. What wonderful talent. It was so nice watching her (in a way) grow up from age 5 to age 12. Even at 5, her talent was so obvious and she had such stage presence. The Saber Dance, I think, was my favorite.


    1. I love the video where she comes out with a saxophone that’s almost as tall as she is. She handles it beautifully. I see kids like her and I think, when I was 8 I could barely tie my shoes…


  3. John,

    Another talented youngster. Mercy, as good as she is now I can’t imagine how great she’ll be as an adult. WOW! Thanks for sharing your discovery with us on the 4M dance floor this week, my friend. Have a boogietastic week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Her understanding of the music goes well beyond the inkblots on the page. With enogh practice anyone can reproduce the notes on the staff, but she actually feels it.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Some hangover from the Soviet days, maybe, although I think a lot of that is falling by the wayside. I’m sure there are just as many kids who are great underachievers in Russia, just as I suspect there are many uber-talented kids here.

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