17 Jul 2016

RAVEL: Piano Trio in A minor

From Music Alive, 8:00 pm on 17 July 2016
Calvino Trio

Calvino Trio Photo: Calvino Trio

RAVEL: Piano Trio in A minor 27 min 20 sec

Ravel's Piano Trio dates from the spring and summer of 1914, during which time the First World War broke out.

Ravel had been exempted from military service earlier on account of his weak constitution, but he volunteered once again and hurried to complete the Trio which he knew could well become his 'opus posthumous'.

In July he wrote to a friend, " Although the weather's been good, for three weeks now the Trio's been getting nowhere and I've been disgusted with it. But today I realised that it's not as horrible as all that ... and the engine's turning over again."

  • The opening theme of the first movement derives from a Basque dance, the zortico.
  • The second movement has the unusual title Pantoum. Ravel was inspired by teh poetic structure of the Malaysian pantun in which the second and fourth lines in one verse appear as the first and third lines in the next.
  • The third movement is a noble passacaglia, and the finale, which follows without a break, calls for a great deal of technical display, with rhythms frequently found in the music of Ravel's native Basque region.

A Wellington Chamber Music Trust concert

Recorded 17 July 2016, St Andrew's on The Terrace, Wellington by RNZ Concert

Producer: David McCaw

Engineer: Graham Kennedy

About the artists:

The Calvino Trio was founded in 2013. The three young musicians, Finnish violinist Sini Simonen, Canadian cellist Alexandre Foster and New Zealand/Japanese pianist Jun Bouterey-Ishido, first met at the IMS Prussia Cove master classes in Cornwall.

New Zealander Jun Bouterey-Ishido will be familiar to audiences from the concert stage and his competition successes, including 1st Prize at the 2008 Kerikeri International Piano Competition. Since then his studies have taken him to the Liszt Academy, Budapest and to Stuttgart, where he graduated with Distinction from the Konzertexamen (Concert Artist) programme, receiving mentoring from Péter Nagy and Kirill Gerstein.

Finnish violinist, Sini Simonen studied at the Sibelius Academy and Musikhochschule Hannover. She has been a prize winner in several major international violin competitions including the Lipizer, Flesch, Cremona and Sibelius violin competition. Sini was a member of the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra and has played as a soloist with, among others, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the Göttingen Symphony Orchestra, the Gyor Philharmonic Orchestra and the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra.

Alexandre Foster, born in Canada, studied cello with Thomas Demenga in Basel. A devoted chamber musician, Alexandre Foster was a member of the Iris Quartet (Freiburg) with which he played concerts in Europe and America and is now a member of the Baroque Ensemble Le-Je-Ne-Scay-Quoi. Alongside his performing commitments, since 2013 Alexandre has held a teaching post at the Hochschule für Musik Stuttgart and is the assistant of Conradin Brotbek at the Hochschule der Künste Bern.