About me

Yllka is from Prishtina – Kosovo. Her first piano lessons were with Letafete Ballata at the Prenk Jakova music school in Prishtina and afterwards at the Academy of Music with Lejla Pula. Yllka graduated with the highest award Distinguished Student given by the University of Prishtina.

In 2001 Yllka moved to London, UK for advanced study with Benjamin Kaplan. During four years of studying with Ben she obtained an external diploma from Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London and had her first London recital in aid of North London Hospice at Lauderdale House in 2004. She also had occasional lessons with John O’Conor in Dublin.

Royal College of Music
Royal College of Music

In 2008 Yllka completed Masters degree in Advanced Piano Performance at the Royal College of Music, studying with Vanessa Latarche. 

In London Yllka was selected to perform at the ‘Pianists of the World Series’ at St Martin-in-the-Fields, has given the opening recital of the Bosendorfer Piano Series and highly acclaimed performances at Fairfield Halls and Blackheath Halls. Her U.S. debut was a recital at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C. broadcast live on the internet.

Yllka has worked with many orchestras including Crowndale, Helios, North London Orchestra, Macedonian Philharmonic with conductor Ramiz Melik performing Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini in Skopje and Struga and has played Saint-Saëns’ concerto n.2 on the closing night of the Chopin Festival with Kosovo Philharmonic in Kosovo. 

Her growing reputation as an exciting pianist has led to her being invited to many major festivals, such as the Chelsea Schubert Festival, Mozart Piano Sonata Festival, Transcendent Festival at the Royal College of Music in London, the Ohrid Summer Festival in Macedonia, Music Festival of Nations by the Cultural Association Tempietto, in Rome, Italy and Remusica festival in Kosovo. 

Yllka works regularly with soprano Gordana Kostic and they have performed together for audiences in the UK, Japan and South Korea.

Yllka is a Steinway artist and in her spare time an eager runner coached by David Chalfen www.runcoach1to1.com 

  • New video!

    Prokofiev Sonata Op.28 n. 3 in A minor. Prokofiev finished the sonata in 1917 while he was still living in Russia. The subtitle of the work is From the old notebooks, since the early sketches of the work date from... Read more
  • London Marathon

    In May 2014 I ran Edinburgh Marathon in 3:42 time, totally smashing my previous best time. This enabled me to qualify to run London Marathon for which I have been training really hard. I have a time target in mind and I... Read more
  • Concert at Burgh House

    On the 9th July I will be performing at the charming little venue, Burgh House in Hampstead. This is a part of Hampstead Music Club's three annual concerts by professionals. I have been a member of Hampstead Music... Read more
  • Interview with Kosovo Diaspora

    Kosovo Diaspora, a website dedicated to highlighting the achievements of Kosovans living abroad, has asked me for an interview. Here's the... Read more
  • Croydon Radio Interview

    On 26th of March, I was a guest on Jo Whitehall's show at Croydon Radio studio. We talked about my recent concert at the Fairfield Halls in Croydon, as well as my upcoming concert with the Kosovo Philharmonic Orchestra... Read more
  • Running for Mental Health Foundation

    On 25th May 2014, I will be running again. This time it's Edinburgh Marathon and I will run for a really good cause, for the Mental Health Foundation. These are the key areas in which their work is focused: improve... Read more
  • Recent recital at Blackheath Halls

    I recently performed at Blackheath Halls in London, at their Fundraising series organised by the Friends of Blackheath Halls. The concert took place at the Recital Hall and was very well attended. I was asked to... Read more
  • Amsterdam Marathon

    TCS Amsterdam Marathon 20th October 2013. Time 3:54:04. If I wasn't a pianist, I would have been a... Read more
  • Fairfield Halls Recital

    It was such a pleasure to perform at the fabulous Fairfield Halls on the 8th of October. The hall, the piano, audience and the whole history of the hall made my recital extra... Read more
  • Review in Farnham Herald

    On September 24th I opened the 2013-14 season of the Music at Lunchtime series at Farnham. The concerts take place at Farnham United Reformed Church, in South Street and this was my third visit there. Concerts are... Read more
  • Concert repertoire

    I remember a long time ago, when I was still studying with Ben Kaplan, I was asked to give a recital in a local venue in North London and was trying to sort out the repertoire for the concert. I told Ben I wanted to... Read more
  • An article in The Archer Newspaper

    The April edition of the Archer Newspaper of the East Finchley in London has published an article about me. They have expressed interest in me because I live in the... Read more
  • Concert at the Woodford Concert Society

    Forest School in Snaresbrook, East London is the host of 5 annual concerts organised by the Woodford Concert Society. I performed there on the 3rd of March, on a Sunday afternoon and it was the first time I visited the... Read more
  • Old scores re-visited

    Musicians are always challenged by learning new repertoire pieces whilst refining current works. Depending on the piece, these new works can be quite time consuming and sometimes I find myself not wanting to stop... Read more
  • Scarlatti Sonata in B Minor, K27

    Domenico Scarlatti (1685-1757) wrote his sonatas later in his life and most of them are believed to have been written between 1752 and 1757. This sonata belongs to his early works known as Essercizi per Gravicembalo... Read more