Last Wednesday’s concert with the Trio Shaham-Erez-Wallfisch was not only a sell-out but a very happy capacity audience who listened to three exceptional musicians play a superb programme of chamber music.
The trio started with Schubert’s Nocturne: the beauty of this music disguises both its complexity and the fact that Schubert was seriously ill at the time he wrote it. The wonderful skills of Arnon Erez (piano), Hagai Shaham (violin) and Raphael Wallfisch (cello) made the sound three dimensional with the three instruments perfectly blended.
Beethoven’s early composition Piano Trio Opus1, No2 was played next. Despite Beethoven only being in his twenties, it’s very recognisable as from the composer. Full of attractive, lively music.
After the interval for coffee, tea and biscuits, the concert ended with an altogether more gritty piece: Dvorak’s Trio No 3, written in 1883 in Vienna at a time when Czechs and all things Czech were not popular in Austria. And shortly after the death of his mother, Dvorak produced a complex masterpiece influenced by Schumann and his champion, Brahms. However, Dvorak could not leave behind his Czech roots entirely, the fourth movement being based on a Czech Furiant dance – in ¾- time with cross-rhythms. This contrasted with a lilting waltz. Toward the end, the themes from the previous movement are recalled.
Despite the success of this concert, there were one or two problems. Pianist Arnon Erez was expecting a page turner but this was not passed on to us. Following an appeal by chairman Tony Cooper, a lady from St Helen's volunteered although she had not page-turned for 30 years! She managed very well and the winner of the raffle for the flower arrangement presented her with the bouquet, a very touching gesture.
But the musicians must have the last word. They thanked the society for engaging them and for such an enthusiastic and appreciative audience. They had enjoyed the evening as much - if not more - than anyone. Great praise from one of the very top piano trios in the world.
The next concert will be on Friday, November 9th, when Norway’s finest string quartet, the Engegård, will play Beethoven, Grieg and Schumann.
See https://clitheroeConcerts.org/ where tickets are available.
Also make a note in your diary for December 12th when five remarkable lady guitar players from Vienna play a Christmas programme of traditional music, moving on to modern compositions, including a suite from West Side Story. Glühwein and mince pies in the interval!