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College Profiles

Student Stories: Sofia Vasieva

Sofia Vasieva playing piano, taken by Dr Elisabeth Kendall

Meet Sofia Vasieva, a first year Physical Natural Sciences student, who recently performed a selection of her own compositions for solo piano from her debut album, Sky, during the Girton College Music Society Composers' Concert. 

Sofia Vasieva (2022 Physical Natural Sciences)

Sofia VasievaI feel very fortunate to have been part of the Composer’s concert, in which I performed a selection of my own compositions for solo piano - 'Starlight', 'Rays Escaping', 'Under Water', 'Rain' and 'Horizon'.

Here is a clip from my performance of Starlight, one of my earliest compositions. I intended for this piece to reflect a feeling of wonder and a longing to comprehend the universe in a way beyond the capabilities of the human mind.

I began to compose for solo piano when I was 13 years old. Over the years, creating music has provided me with a means of expressing my thoughts and emotions. These musical pursuits are paralleled by a passion for physics and, for a number of years, I struggled to decide between them. Knowing that I couldn’t leave either one of them behind, I now study Physical Natural Sciences at the Girton College, University of Cambridge, and for me, music and physics are inseparable, intertwined and dependent upon one another. Studying physics provides me with deeper mental content to express in my music, whilst the music I hear and create is the backdrop upon which I experience all else, including physics.

My music is strongly influenced by nature, as can be seen through the names of my compositions, but these references are intended as metaphors for other life experiences. For example, the three pieces 'Rays Escaping', 'Under Water' and 'Rain' form a trilogy which begins with rays of light emerging from dark clouds. Then, 'Under Water' narrates a metaphorical feeling of drowning, but as the light rays enter the transparent water beneath, they can reach even those who are sinking. Finally, 'Rain' represents a release, a forgiveness of oneself and a willingness to move on to a new stage in life.

Last summer, I decided to record nine solo piano pieces and release them as my debut album, Sky. If you enjoyed listening to Starlight, my other music can be found here:

Sky - Album cover by Sofia Vasieva