Emmanuel Vass 'The Naked Pianist' is playing in Surbiton this weekend ahead of an appearance on Channel 4's First Dates Hotel programme.

Mr Vass is known for his exuberant performances and incredible skills on the keys, and will play at the The Cornerhouse Community Arts Centre in Surbiton from 7.30pm this Saturday (July 27).

The gig comes ahead of Mr Vass appearing on Channel 4's hit show First Dates Hotel, which will screen later this year.

Speaking to the Surrey Comet, Mr Vass described his journey growing up in Hull to taking the classical music world by storm on a path that was anything but conventional.

"I'm not from a musical background. My parents, completely off the cuff, bought me a little toy piano keyboard with coloured keys and I absolutely loved it and loved making tunes on it from a young age.

"Finally I asked my parents for piano lessons and eventually got a place to study at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester," Mr Vass described.

Since then, he has achieved a number one album in the classical charts, has performed for royalty in the form of the Prince of Monaco — "it was amazing!" — and is a frequently broadcast artist on radio stations like Classic FM.

"I'm a from a very humble background — my Dad's a carpenter, and I'm good with my hands in a different way," Mr Vass joked.

Indeed, challenging stereotypes with a view to breaking them down completely is at the heart of the northerner's Naked Pianist project.

Surrey Comet: Mr Vass will appear on Channel 4's First Dates Hotel programme later this yearMr Vass will appear on Channel 4's First Dates Hotel programme later this year

Frequently perceived as aloof and remote, Mr Vass wants to liberate the genre of classical music from these stereotypes and show how anyone can discover the beauty and fun lying behind the sheet music.

"When people think about classical music they have all sorts of pre conceptions about what it's like.

"People often message me on social media asking whether they need to where a ball gown, tail coats, bow ties, things like that, they think it's very traditional.

"Whereas I'm a mixed race carpenter's son who is also a triathlete and I absolutely love classical music.

"I'm stripping music bare and making it accessible to everyone...I don't think classical needs to be dressed up — it's already fantastic as it is," Mr Vass said.

This is what gig-goers can anticipate with Naked Pianist's arrival in Surbiton as part of Surbiton Salons this Saturday.

While a classical repertoire of Bach, Beethoven, Debussy will feature in Mr Vass's set, the audience will also be treated to slices of Boogie-woogie and The Naked Pianist's own version of Queen's iconic hit Bohemian Rhapsody.

"I hope it's going to be a gateway for people into experiencing the joys of classical music," Mr Vass said.

"That's what the Naked Pianist is all about."

The Naked Pianist is performing at Surbiton's Cornerhouse Community Arts Centre for Surbiton Salons from 7.30pm this Saturday (July 27).

For tickets and more, go to: http://www.surbitonsalons.com/