Lalauni [Lalaouni], Lila [Ioulia]
- George Leotsakos
(b Athens, ?June 9, 1910; d Paris, Feb 12, 1996). Greek pianist and composer. Granddaughter of the composer Timotheos Xanthopoulos and a child prodigy, she entered the Vienna Music Academy in 1927. She studied the piano until 1930, and then composition with Robert Konta, graduating in 1934. She later took lessons privately with Dupré in Paris, where she settled. Lalauni became known primarily as a brilliant pianist; she made her début in Vienna as early as 1930. Four years later she performed Richard Strauss’s Burleske, with the composer conducting. Although her international performing career overshadowed her achievements as a composer, some of her works, especially her piano concertos, were occasionally performed in Greece. Stylistically, her compositions move between late Romanticism and neo-classicism and betray a genuine lyrical gift exercised with emotional restraint. Indeed in terms of technique, let alone inspiration, she ranks among the best Greek composers of her generation. In her final years, poor eyesight forced her to abandon composition....