Thrilling finale puts piano trio to the fore

NZTrio set off in the glow of a fading Celtic twilight, working valiantly to inject some semblance of stylistic unity into a 1946 piano trio by Arnold Bax.

 

Bax’s Adagio did showcase Ashley Brown’s uber-lyrical cello, but just how could critic Scott Goddard, 70 years ago, hail this trio as a “great little masterpiece?” Two Seascapes, arranged by Jenny McLeod from her Tone Clock Pieces, came far closer to deserving that accolade. The musicians responded imaginatively to their ingenious recasting, with veiled string sonorities in the first and frolicking dialogues in the second.

 

Samuel Holloway’s new Corpse and Mirror continues his teasing exploration of boredom and anxiety in the concert hall. However, 18 minutes of seemingly unrelated chords, carefully toned and modulated, replaced ennui with an irresistible urge to immerse oneself in this deceptively intricate and off-beat soundworld.

 

After interval, Brown introduced Beethoven’s E flat trio from Opus 70 as new to the group, warning us not to heed seeming uncertainties in its opening pages. This received the most forceful playing of the evening, with thrilling moments of tenacious thematic pursuit. Sarah Watkins’ piano was the glittering core of Beethoven’s rushing finale and, apart from some exposed solo work in that movement, Natalie Lin, the first of three violinists deputising this year for the sorely missed Justine Cormack, was at her most convincing.

 

William Dart – NZ Herald, August 2017

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NZTrioTuesday, November 21st, 2017 at 9:51am
We’re proud to count NZTrio as part of the Q whanau ... so deserved Q team!! Congratulations
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NZTrioFriday, November 17th, 2017 at 2:34pm
Amazing night at the VMAS NZTrio SWAY winner of Classical Artist thanks to #rattle & all our NZ composers
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NZTrioFriday, November 17th, 2017 at 8:50am
There’s a Tui in my garden!
Big ups to our fellow nominees Te Koki Trio and Jenny McLeod, and to Steve Garden at Rattle.
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NZTrioFriday, November 17th, 2017 at 7:48am
WOOHOO! Best Classical Artist 2017 - what a fabulous night at the #NZMA! Thanks so much Steve and the Rattle crew!
NZTrio
NZTrioTuesday, November 14th, 2017 at 5:20pm
Join us for Last Calls for our 2017 year as we SOAR tonight at 7pm in Auckland at Loft & last rounds of our specially potent cocktail - thanks #QTheatre crew.
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NZTrioMonday, November 13th, 2017 at 11:47am
Pretty proud that our #rattle recorded CD SWAY is up for a Tui this year. Sarah & Ashley chat to Eva on Upbeat today at 1pm about their fave pieces. Thanks #RNZ Concert.

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