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New CD Released by the Beaux Arts Trio

“Three minds and bodies have been synthesized into a single
musical entity…chamber playing at the Platonic level.”
– Chicago Sun-Times

new shostakovich CDThe Beaux Arts Trio proudly releases its newest CD:

SHOSTAKOVICH

Piano Trio No. 1 in C minor
Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor
Seven Romances on verses by Alexander Blok
Joan Rodgers, soprano

Last year Warner Classics released the debut recording from the newest configuration of the legendary Beaux Arts Trio. Now in its 51st season, the Trio is recognized as having set the standard for the performance of the piano trio literature. Founding member and pianist Menahem Pressler, cellist Antonio Meneses and, the newest member, violinist Daniel Hope recorded the critically acclaimed CD of Dvorák and Mendelssohn trios. “The [Dvorák] finale packs an emotional punch that reminds you just why the Beaux Arts are so highly regarded,” said Gramophone, “the recording, warm yet with the right degree of space, sets off the players beautifully.”

all three works for piano trio composed by Shostakovich. These date, respectively, from the beginning, the middle and the end of the composer’s career. The C minor Piano Trio was composed in 1923 when Shostakovich was 17 years old and the most brilliant student at the Petrograd Conservatory. It is dedicated to Tatyana Glivenko, an early girlfriend. In the single movement work, Shostakovich aimed to create original music for a post-Revolutionary society. The trio, characterized by many different tempi and musical characters, was not published until after the composer’s death. The E Minor Piano Trio was begun in 1943 immediately after Shostakovich had completed his 7th and 8th symphonies. It was strongly affected by public and private events including the devastation of the Second World War and the sudden death of his close friend, Ivan Sollertinsky. The finale is grim and disturbing, using Jewish idioms as symbols of oppression and victim-hood. The Seven Romances on Verses by Alexander Blok began life as a composition for Shostakovich’s friends, soprano Galina Vishnevskaya and her husband cellist Mstislav Rostropovich. In this recording the soloist is soprano Joan Rodgers, one of Britain’s best-loved singers.

The Beaux Arts Trio continues to ignite overwhelming enthusiasm from audiences around the world. From the United States to Russia, from Japan to Germany, from Israel to Brazil, this renowned ensemble's extensive engagements have brought it the highest praise and ovations from concerts in all of the world's major music centers. In a recent review the Boston Globe stated: “The individual egos and personalities [are] placed at the service of the ensemble and of the music. There is a distinct Beaux Arts identity, too, chameleon-like in its ability to merge with the identities of composers and their many moods. … The string playing by Hope and Meneses was superb … Pressler is a miracle, still playing with fluency, sensitivity, imagination, puckish wit, and ravishingly ductile tone … a compendium of vanishing golden-age virtues.”

Violinist Daniel Hope, who has received raves (and dual Grammy nominations) for his recent Warner Classics recordings of the Berg and Britten concertos and “East Meets West,” will release two new recordings next year: Bach Violin Concertos with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the Shostakovich violin concertos 1 & 2. Also next year, Antonio Meneses will release a new recording of works by Schumann, Boellmann and Bruch with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.

 

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