Venezuelan pianist composer Gabriela Montero stunned members of the public as she gave a surprise performance to kick-off her year with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra on the end of Bournemouth Pier.

The Latin Grammy-winning pianist has a huge following across the globe: she performed at Barrak Obama's 2008 inauguration alongside Yo-Yo Ma, and has been honoured by Amnesty International for her humanitarian work. Growing up in Venezuela she was championed by José Antonio Abreu, the founder of the ground-breaking El Sistema movement.

Famous for her incredible improvisations she is renowned for her unique approach: a performance at Vienna's Konzerthaus was described by Der Standard as being "like a visit from outer space" and she's performed with the world's leading conductors from Marin Alsop to Claudio Abbado, Lorin Maazel and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

She announced at the end of September that she would visit the south coast to give locals "a sense of what's coming up this year", ahead of a year as Artist-in-Residence with the BSO.

Filmed by Classic FM, the surprise performance took place in Key West, at the end of Bournemouth Pier, and locals braved a dramatic storm to reach the famed performer. She improvised on themes requested by the audience which included Summertime and Maria from West Side Story. The performance is available to watch at Gabriela performed her Latin Concerto with the BSO and conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto in Poole and Portsmouth, in October, and her performances blew audiences away. You can hear Gabriela playing Mozart's Piano Concerto No 4 ) in a concert that features Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite – at Lighthouse, Poole on December 4 and Exeter's Great Hall on December 5.

She'll return to perform in recital with the BSO Soloists in Poole next year (February 26).

See the BSO's website for further details and to book tickets.