Verona, Teatro Ristori. Amici della Musica di Verona Society. 2014-15 Concert Season
Ars Trio di Roma
Pianoforte Laura Pietrocini
Violino Marco Fiorentini
Violoncello Valeriano Taddeo
Franz Schubert: Nocturne in E flat major op. 148, D. 897
Ludwig van Beethoven:Trio in D major op. 70 n° 1 “The Ghost”
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: Trio in A minor op.50
Verona. 7th January 2015.
The piano trio, Ars Trio di Roma, gave a beautifully calibrated performance for the current season of the Amici della Musica di Verona. The three members of the ensemble, the pianist Laura Pietrocini, the violinist Marco Fiorentini and the cellist Valeriano Taddeo, brought their conspicuous technical skill to a programme rich in interpretative possibilities. The programme opened with the intensely lirical and evocative Nocturne D.897 by Schubert, a sublime ‘Adagio’. Such was the complete uniformity of dynamic, colour and texture of the slow, pianissimo opening theme of the ascending violin and cello parts in thirds over the misterious arpeggios in the piano accompaniment, that they seemed to be played by the same bow. The initial pianissimo was almost imperceptible but at the same time intense and suggestive of longing. The poise and consumate calm of the opening rose to the contrasting, heroic and fortissimo second theme in dotted rhythym giving a preview of the group’s dialectical and affermative skills before receding to the opening stillness again.
The following trio, Beethoven’s well-known “Ghost” Trio illustrated the absolute lack of self-indulgence on the part of the performers. The performers opted interestingly for an interpretation of a certain restraint of the two propellant and vigorous outer movements of this highly Romantic work, illustrated by the choice of carefully dosed vibrato on both violin and cello. In the compact structure dense with contents of the first movement, the initial effect was one of seeming detachment and a loss of dramatic tension. However the warmth of sound, the breadth of phrasing, the clarity of the counterpoint and the freshness of approach convinced for their directness and simplicity. The same interpretative idea on the other hand, contributed to a truly spectral second movement. The rarefied and eery opening phrase of the strings, the searing and plaintive solo cello, the empty stillness portrayed intermittently on the strings, the obstinate insistence of the alternating accompanying lines, the violin’s unyielding adherence of the bow to the string in the sublime slowness, the underlying menacing piano voice were measured to upmost effect. At he end, the last three pizzicato-staccato echoed chillingly desolate.
The second half of the programme was devoted to the imposing and unique Trio in A minor op.50 by Tchaikovsky. The work is made up of two parts, the first part is an Elegiac Piece(Pezzo elegiaco) and the second is Theme and Variations. The group confronted this monumental work with tenacious involvement. The force of despair and emotivity in the elegy were sensitively and tastefully expressed. Laura Petrocini distinguished herself in a piano part which especially in the second part, is virtuosistic throughout. Valeriano Taddeo’s solos were passionate in his easy sweeping phrasing and vibrant shining sound. Marco Fiorentini was impeccable; ever present but never preponderant. Perfect and consistent intonation, clean tone production and a smoothness of line from both. In the eleven variations of the monumental series, they exalted the variety of musical treatments and stunning expressive diversity, characterizing highlights which include a music box, a waltz with a different tune but the theme in a counter-melody, an elaborate fugue, a refined mazurka, and a delicate lament. The trio offered a laconic encore in an almost off-hand manner; Tango Pathetique by Peter Kiesewetter, a compilation of favourite Tchaikovsky themes.