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The Orion Ensemble with guest Stephen Boe, viola
November 10, 2021 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm
TRIO in B Flat Major—Allegro, for Violin, Viola, and Cello, Op. 9 No. 2
FANTASY in G Minor for Violin and Piano (1933)
QUARTET for Clarinet, Violin, Cello, and Piano (1938)
ADAGIO and RONDO CONCERTANT in F Major for Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, D. 487
Franz Schubert’s Trio in B-Flat Major—Allegro, for Violin, Viola and Cello, D. 471, is a single-movement, unfinished work. It offers a glimmering texture of expressions that point to a vision of eternity. Schubert’s lyricism provides a sense of timeless, luminous beauty and affirmative joyfulness, hiding much of the dark clouds which pervaded all too many of the composer’s short time on the earth (31 years).
Florence Price was the first American Black female composer to have her music performed by major symphony orchestras. Born in Little Rock, Arkansas, she established her career in Chicago. Her Fantasy in G minor for Violin and Piano (1933) combines the sounds of post-Romantic Era expressions with the folk music of Africa. A highlight of this work is during its final minutes, as the opening theme returns for a passionate conclusion.
Paul Hindemith composed the Quartet for Clarinet, Violin, Cello and Piano (1938) in the winter of 1938 during his second visit to America. Hindemith’s life in Germany was made unbearable by Hitler’s rise to power. His wife was Jewish, endangering their safety. Two members of his string quartet were Jewish and had to resign. Coming to America, Hindemith renewed his inspiration with this quartet: “It is a considerable chunk of music, sounds very nice and ought to make a good impression.”
Schubert’s Adagio and Rondo Concertant in F Major for Piano, Violin, Viola and Cello, D. 487 is a concerto piece in miniature for piano and strings. Schubert rarely wrote concerto-like works, and this remarkable exception has a poignant reason for its creation. Schubert wished to marry Therese Grob and composed this music at the request of her brother Heinrich. While the music unfortunately failed to yield an approval from the Grob family for Therese’s hand, it has provided one of Schubert’s rarest chamber gems.