• Steve Ambler

Dolin Piano Trio


(Left to right): Elzabeth Dolin, Laurence Kayaleh and Bernadene Blaha comprise the Dolin Piano Trio playing at Hudson’s Saint-James Church Hall on Sunday, November 18.

The second concert of the 36th season of the Hudson Chamber Music Series will take place this Sunday, November 18 at 4 p.m. in St. James Church Hall, 642 Main Road in Hudson. The Dolin Trio will perform a concert of East European romantic works by Janacek, Smetana, Suk and Tchaikovsky.

This is a return engagement by Elizabeth Dolin (cello), this time with a trio formed under her leadership. The other members are Bernadene Blaha (piano) and Laurence Kayaleh (violin).

Since her Carnegie Recital Hall debut in 1985, Elizabeth Dolin has been recognized as one of Canada's finest cellists. She has played as a recitalist and chamber musician throughout Canada and the United States and performed as a soloist under such conductors as Mario Bernardi, Yannick Nezet-Séguin and Simon Streatfield. She has an extensive discography on several labels that includes works by Chopin, Debussy, Mendelssohn, Mozart and Rachmaninoff.

Bernadene Blaha first came to international attention as a prizewinner of major international competitions such as the Montreal Symphony Orchestra Competition and the 11th Annual International Piano Competition in New York City. She is Associate Professor at the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California, and has received the National Arts Foundation’s Outstanding Teacher Recognition award. Her extensive discography includes piano trios by Schubert, Saint-Saëns and Brahms.

Laurence Kayaleh has performed as guest soloist with many distinguished orchestras including the Zurich Tonhalle, the Russian National Orchestra, the National Symphony (Washington DC) and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and with many distinguished conductors including Leonard Slatkin, Charles Dutoit and Mikhail Pletnev. She has recorded the complete works for violin and piano of Nikolai Medtner, Arthur Honegger and Georgy Catoire for the NAXOS label.

The first half of Sunday’s programme consists of works by Czech composers. Josef Suk wrote his Elegy for piano trio opus 23 in 1902 as a memorial to the life of Julius Zeyer, whose novels and poems were steeped in the legends of Bohemia. The Fairy Tale, composed in 1910 for cello and piano by Leos Janacek, tells the story of a Russian prince who endures a series of tests handed down by the ruler of the underworld. Bedrich Smetana’s Aus der Heimat (From my Homeland) is a set of two duets for violin and piano composed in 1879 — five years after his most famous orchestral work, Ma Vlast, and equally inspired by patriotic Czech folk music. Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's Piano Trio in A Minor opus 50, one of the great staples of the piano trio repertoire, takes up the second half of the programme. Tchaikovsky composed the trio in Rome in 1882. All the great piano trio ensembles have recorded this work (Internet vendor ArkivMusic lists 63 currently available recordings). It exerted a strong influence on succeeding generations of Russian composers like Rachmaninoff and Shostakovich.

St. James Church Hall is an ideal setting for chamber music with an unparalleled view of the Lake of Two Mountains and acoustics that have attracted the attention of CBC Radio, which has recorded several of the concerts. All concerts are followed by a reception where audience members can chat with the musicians. Individual tickets will be available at the door ($25, $20 for seniors). Further details concerning the group’s 36th season and more extensive bios of the trio’s members can be found at www.hudsonchambermusic.ca/. All three members of the trio have a selection of videos available on YouTube.

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