Hermitage Piano Trio

Mount Gretna, PA, United States

Mt. Gretna Playhouse

Grammy nominated musicians performing Rachmaninoff's 2nd Elegiac Trio 

3:00 pm and 7:30 pm performances.  First Listen performance at 6:45 pm. See below for details.


$25 | Buy Tickets


Hermitage Trio

“Three of Russia’s most spectacular young soloists… turned in a performance of such power and sweeping passion that it left you nearly out of breath.– The Washington Post

“More striking even than the individual virtuosity was the profound level of integration among the players, who showed a rare degree of ensemble from beginning to end.” – The Washington Post

What is a Piano Trio? A trio for piano and two stringed instruments, usually violin and cello.

Artists

Hermitage Piano Trio, will perform their Grammy-nominated Rachmaninoff’s 2nd Elegiac Trio. The  trio are all sought after soloists around the world: 

  • Violinist Misha Keylin has sold hundreds of thousands of copies of his works and has garnered numerous accolades and awards, including “Critic’s Choice” by The New York Times,Gramophone, and The Strad.
  • Cellist Sergey Antonov was one of the youngest cellists ever awarded the gold medal at the International Tchaikovsky Competition.
  • Pianist Ilya Kazantsev has won many awards and honors including the International Chopin Competition (Russia) and the 2007 & 2008 World Piano Competitions.

Based in the United States, the Trio has recently been performing all over North America. The Trio’s debut CD – released in June 2019 – is comprised of the piano trios of Sergei Rachmaninoff: Trio élégiaque No. 1 in G minor; Trio élégiaque No. 2 in D minor, Op. 9; and Vocalise.  Joining many other reviewers, The Strad lauded the release, praising its “outstanding playing in intense, heartfelt performances.”

Grammy nominations for their 2019 Rachmaninoff album:

  • Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance
  • Best Engineered Album, Classical
  • Producer Of The Year, Classical

For more information, visit www.hermitagepianotrio.com

Program

Georgy Sviridov (1915-1998), Piano Trio in a minor, Op. 6

Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943), Trio élègiaque No. 2 in d minor, Op. 9

Georgy Sviridov (1915-1998) was born in the Russian town of Fatezh in Kurst province. After studying folk instruments locally, he eventually entered the Leningrad Conservatory where he studied with Shostakovich among others. He spent most of his life in Moscow and went on to become a prolific composer. His impressive output includes orchestral and chamber music works, concertos, choral music, songs, and film scores. Living and working during turbulent times in the Soviet Union, Sviridov managed simultaneously to satisfy his political masters and to create music that preserves the genuine spirituality of Russian art and culture.  

The Piano Trio (composed in 1945) clearly shows the influence of Sviridov’s teacher Shostakovich. It is a massive work, written on a grand scale. The first movement, marked Elegy opens with a subdued melody shared by the strings. This mood is brusquely interrupted by a powerful episode in the piano, full of passion and anguish. Given that it was written during the height of Leningrad’s struggle for survival against the brutal Nazi attack lengthy siege, and that Sviridov was in the city at the time, most commentators suggest that it is related to this. The second movement, Scherzo, though exciting and energetic is a dance macabre, a devil’s dance of death. The trio section, romantic and innocent stands in sharp contrast. Next comes a Funeral March, once again we hear the main subject of the elegy from the first movement, but now it is even more somber and gloomy as befits such a march. The finale, marked Idyll, has a pastoral quality, perhaps connoting that peace has returned to the land, but the movement ends sadly and quietly, a reminder of the tragedy of war. 

Sergei Rachmaninov Piano Trio No. 2 in d minor, Op. 9, “Elegiaque”

Rachmaninov was twenty years old when Tchaikovsky died of cholera in St. Petersburg on November 6th, 1893, at the age of 53.  Tchaikovsky had been a strong supporter of Rachmaninov’s compositional talents, had made the arrangements for Rachmaninov’s first commission, and had brought Rachmaninov to the brink of international fame. Rachmaninov was devastated by the news of Tchaikovsky’s death, and immediately began writing a piano trio in his memory, his Piano Trio in d minor, Op. 9, “Elegiaque.” 

The Trio is a worthy memorial to Tchaikovsky, as Tchaikovsky’s A minor Piano Trio Op. 50 was to his friend and pianist Nicholas Rubinstein in 1881. The connections between these memorial trios run deeper; structurally, Rachmaninov’s work is strongly based on Tchaikovsky’s – to the extent of having a set of variations as the second movement, and the thematic likeness of both variation themes implies that Rachmaninov based his on Tchaikovsky’s. The first movement of the Rachmaninov’s d minor Trio is based on a broad outline of sonata form, but without the usual melodic contrast of this traditional structure.  The introductory lament is restated and expanded, leading to a wealth of music that appears to be a succession of interrelated variations.  The second movement uses theme and variation for its structural blueprint, with eight variations (although not numbered by the composer in the score) that are quite extensive and wide-ranging.  The piano has greater importance in this movement; it alone announces the theme, and also has a long solo variation.  The Finale is quite short and structurally simple.  Halfway through, it features the return of the lament from the first movement, and finishes with an absent voice, only cello and piano playing as the work concludes.

The original version of this trio called for a harmonium to be played in the second movement.  Of course, the writing of the piano part is so complex that it is impossible for the pianist to attempt to play both instruments at the same time.  In a 1907 revision, Rachmaninoff eliminated the harmonium part, and cut a number of sections to simplify the structure.  The original version of the work was performed on January 31, 1894, with the composer performing at the piano.  An additional performer was used to play the harmonium.                                                                                                — program note by Jason Duckles

First Listen

A First Listen performance will take place at 6:45 pm.  These performances are free to the public. 

Deeya Doshi is a rising senior at Manheim Township High School. She has been studying piano with Rosemary Blessing since the age of six. In the spring of 2021, Deeya played Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 22, first movement, in the Women’s Symphony Association of Lancaster’s concerto competition ​and placed first in the Senior Piano Division. She also takes cello lessons, plays in her school orchestra, and is planning to attend college and major in STEM. 

Scenes From Childhood, Op. 15, Robert Schumann (1810-1856)

  1. Of Foreign Lands and People
  2. Curious Story

iii. The Chase

  1. Pleading Child
  2. Perfect Happiness
  3. Important Event

vii. Reverie

viii. By the Fireside

  1. Knight of the Rocking-Horse
  2. Almost Too Serious
  3. Frightening 

xii. Child Falling Asleep

xiii. The Poet Speaks

Sonata in E-flat Major, K. 282, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

iii. Allegro

Venue Details

200 Pennsylvania Avenue
Mount Gretna, PA 17064
United States
(717) 361-1508