Rebeca Omordia

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Omordia performs music by composers who share her Nigerian heritage amid a wide range of more traditional piano solo and chamber music.
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Pianist Rebeca Omordia, best known by the mid-2010s as a duet partner to cellist Julian Lloyd Webber, has embraced her unusual background: she is half Romanian and half Nigerian. Omordia's father, a member of the Igbo ethnic group, moved from his home in Nigeria's Delta State to Romania in the 1980s to study medicine, where he met and married her Romanian mother. Omordia was introduced to the piano at an early age, with the idea that she might be able to play the instrument in church. The plan was that she would follow her father into the medical profession, but it soon became clear that the piano could occupy her for hours on end, and that she tended to lose patience with almost anything else. A teacher spotted Omordia's talent and began to enter her in competitions, which led during her teen years to appearances on Romanian national television. Studying piano with Dana Borsan, Omordia graduated from the National Music University in Bucharest in 2006.

Moving to England, Omordia earned advanced degrees at the Birmingham Conservatory (2009) and Trinity College, London (2010). For the latter program she received the Ofenheim Scholarship. During this period she caught the attention of Lloyd Webber, with whom she toured for two years beginning in 2009; he has remained a strong supporter of her career. Omordia made solo appearances at Birmingham's Town Hall as well as at several top Romanian venues. In 2015 she was engaged by the John Ireland Trust for a tour of Britain that featured Ireland's compositions. She made her recording debut in 2017 in a duo recording with pianist Mark Bebbington in an album of two-piano music by Ralph Vaughan Williams; that year also saw her tour with cellist Razvan Suma.

Omordia has also championed the little-explored field of classical music by Nigerian composers, forming a partnership with the Nigerian High Commissioner in London to promote the effort. She has performed works such as the Piano Sonata No. 2 of Ayo Bankole that incorporates influences from traditional Nigerian music. Omordia has also traveled to the U.S. to attend and perform at the African and Afro-American Music Festival in St. Louis, where she commissioned a work, 5 Kaleidoscopes, from Nigerian-American composer Fred Onovwerosuoke.