A Precious Gem on the Contemporary Chamber Music Scene

We were delighted to welcome Emerald Trio back for their second residency (the first having been in 2015, when they recorded Big Green Apple, their debut disc of all-new works composed especially for them, released last year to glowing reviews). This residency was all about breaking in a new pianist and work-shopping a new piece commissioned by Hill and Hollow Music for Emerald Trio. Composer-pianist James Sheppard wrote (pretty much on-site at Harvey House) a collection of five Adirondack-inspired miniatures that captured many moods and conjured many colorful images: “Adirondack Run,” “Saranac Shimmers,” “Alone Mountain,” “Farmers’ Duet,” and “Night Time Whiskey.” The premiere performance was enthusiastically received – the audience loved it!  We know that it will be programmed a lot on future Emerald Trio concerts.

Other works performed also deserve a mention. True to their mission, the Emeralds champion under-exposed worthy composers from the past. They played a beautiful suite by Mel (née Mélanie) Bonis (1858-1937), a little known contemporary of Ravel. A protégée of César Franck, Bonis published over 300 works as “Mel” Bonis because women composers were not taken seriously in that period.  The Trio also played works by T.O. Sterrett (b. 1953), Howard Cass (b. 1989), and Alessandro Annunziata (b. 1968), demonstrating their commitment to contemporary chamber music and building the repertoire for their ensemble’s instrumentation of flute, violin/viola, and piano.  It was a well-designed program, beautifully played, and thoroughly enjoyed!

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