The Mediterranea Trio had the audience spellbound when they demonstrated their amazing technique and cohesion in the Hayward Theatre on the 11th March 2011.
The pianist Elenlucia Pappalardo, violinist Markella Vandoros, and the cellist Alessandro Sanguineti combined perfectly, playing as one. Their concert included mammoth works that explored a wide range of styles and expressions.
Schubert’s Piano Trio no.2 in E flat major opened the programme. In these four varied movements, the three players definitely added a Mediterranean flavour to their performance as they fully expressed the emotive and lyrical potency of Schubert’s themes.
Cascading runs and broken chords in the piano and beautifully entwined violin and cello episodes captured our attention immediately. The playful Scherzo and its subsequent changes of mood and the intriguing stuttering theme in the final movement were also exquisitely executed.
This was followed by Shostakovich’s Piano Trio no.2 in E minor which provided a nice contrast. In this work we were transported to the sparse countryside of Russia. Intriguing use of harmonics in the cello helped create an eerie sense of emptiness and loss associated with the souls of the missing people from the atrocities of the Second World War.
This desolation branched into long episodes that were demonic, macabre or pervaded with haunting gypsy refrains. Not a moment was lost. Every nuance of expression and emotion was wrenched from the notes by these amazing musicians.
This delightful concert ended with Piazzolla’s Four Seasons of Buenos Aires. This work demonstrated without a doubt that these players ‘have it’.
Some musicians, no matter how practiced they are, can create music that is note perfect and rhythmically exact but that never quite touches the soul of the music. However, these wonderful performers exuded natural Latin rhythmic ‘know how’ to fascinating effect. Their amazing technical agility, their expressive intensity and their empathy with the style was always permeated with an infectious Tango rhythmic pulse.
The next concert in the King’s School Ely Concert Series will be on the 13th of May in the Recital Hall at 7.30 pm featuring Catriona Clark (soprano), Daniel Howard (baritone) and Oliver Hancock (piano).