Petrof Piano Trio
Friday March 15 in the Courtenay Centre, Newton Abbot, at 7.30pm
It was only a couple of weeks ago that I was singing the praises of pianist Martin James Bartlett’s spectacular virtuoso keyboard display, at the previous recital in the outstanding NADSA Concert Series.
For the next event, they return to the field of chamber music, and one of its most popular genres – the Piano Trio – with a visit from the Petrof Trio on Friday March 15 in the town’s Courtenay Centre at 7.30pm.
The Trio hails from the Czech Republic and is unmatched in its interpretation of works by the Bohemian masters. It was founded in 2009 by Wihan Quartet violinist, Jan Schulmeister. The members are renowned chamber-music players, and together bring to the ensemble over thirty years’ experience in the concert hall. The same year it was formed, the ensemble became the resident trio of the Petrof Piano Company, also in the Czech Republic. The company, known for its long tradition and build quality, immediately recognised that the Petrof Trio was an ensemble whose performances were at the highest level, and so was keen to support it.
Since 2011 the ensemble has been resident trio at the International Music Course in Zábřeh na Moravě (Czech Republic), where the members are also instructors. The Trio’s last two CDs, featuring trios by Bruch, Mendelssohn, Lalo, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky, were both released on the Nimbus label, to positive critical acclaim from both Czech, and leading international musical journals, and the trio-members are also frequent concert performers, both in Europe further afield.
Haunting, yearning and passionate
Their NADSA programme opens with a real nonpareil – Janáček’s first String Quartet – subtitled ‘Kreutzer Sonata’ – in a special arrangement for the Trio by leading Czech musicologist, Milos̆ S̆tĕdron̆at. This is followed by Rachmaninoff’s early Trio élégiaque No 1 in G minor, written when the composer was nineteen, and full of haunting, yearning and passionate themes. The Petrofs then return to their homeland for the final work – Dvořák’sPiano Trio No. 2 in G minor, Op 26.
Tickets: £13 in advance, £15 on the door (students £2, accompanied children free, (subject to availability), can be purchased online from www.nadsa.co.uk or from Tourist Information Centres, Arnolds (Bovey Tracey), or Fables (St Marychurch).
Philip R Buttall
top image: the Petrof Trio