Paxos Festival 2022
Concert for Piano, Cello & Violin
Martyna Jatkauskaite, piano
Vassilis Saitis, cello
Simos Papanas, violin
Saturday 10 September 2022
Old School Yard, Loggos, Paxos
Claude Debussy: Rêverie (1890)
Written in 1890, Debussy's Rêverie was one of his first solo piano works that had an impact. Even at this early stage in his career, when he was still working out what kind of composer he wanted to be, we recognize the signature Debussy sound.
The gently repetitive theme that opens the work feels like a descent into drowsy dream-world and as the textures become ever richer the dream only becomes more lush and addictive. A fantastic early sign that this young man was someone to watch...
Paul Schoenfield: Café Music (1987)
Born in Detroit in 1947, Paul Schoenfield writes music that combines classical, folk, and popular forms. Once an active concert pianist, Schoenfield now teaches composition at the University of Michigan. The composer wrote the following about Café Music:
“The idea to compose Café Music first came to me in 1985 after replacing one night the pianist at Murray’s Restaurant in Minneapolis. Murray’s employs a house trio that plays entertaining dinner music in a wide variety of styles. My intention was to write a kind of high-class dinner music, which might also (just barely) find its way into a concert hall. The work draws on many of the types of music played by the trio at Murray’s. For example, early 20th-century American, Viennese, light Classical, gypsy, and Broadway styles are all represented. A paraphrase of a beautiful Chassidic melody is incorporated in the second movement.”
Bedřich Smetana: Piano Trio in G-Minor, Opus 15 (1855)
Smetana wrote his only piano trio when he was just thirty-one. He dedicated the work to his oldest daughter Bedřiška who had just died at the age of four from scarlet fever. Her father was devastated. Though he left no specific programmatic description of the trio, its grief-stricken and elegiac character is unmistakable. Influenced by Eastern-European folk music, with its unbridled passion, rhapsodic forms full of rich thematic variation and a piano style closer to Liszt than Chopin, Smetana's lone piano trio is a milestone of Romanticism. It predates and looks forward to the passionate music of Brahms and Dvořák.