17th March 2017
|Boulanger||D’un soir triste|
|Ravel||Trio in A minor (1914)|
|Arvo Pärt||Mozart - Adagio|
|Schubert||Trio in B flat D.898|
It is 11 years since the Kungsbacka Trio last played for the Nicholas Yonge Society; then they were three young tyros who had captivated audiences with their energy and insight. Now, like the rest of us, they are 11 years older and 11 years more experienced. Would they still captivate and could we answer the Strad's question "Is there a better piano trio in Western Europe?" in their favour. My answer was that if there is a better piano trio, we have not yet heard it; and, to judge by the audience's response, it was their's too.
They played an inspired programme inspiringly. Malin Broman's violin and Jesper Svedberg's cello played as one, matching quality of sound and nuance of phrase with the apparent effortlessness born of long experience together. Have we ever heard such beautifully expressive pianissimos?Whether in the harrowing final chords of Arvo Pärt's tribute to the violinist Oleg Kagan, or the Gamelan-like chords of Ravel, or the teasing dialogue of Schubert, their playing drew you in to their world as they explored their love of this wonderful music. Simon Crawford-Phillips coaxed sounds from our piano that I didn't think it capable of and played with the wit, intelligence and passion of a master, totally at one with the strings. Together, their music made sense.
It is a long seven months until the first concert of our next season, but the wait will seem the shorter as the beautiful sounds of the Kungsbacka echo around my head.
Reviewer: Chris Darwin
Photographer: David James