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Wanderer Trio, a vagabond for musical language

Ensemble to play May 10 at Goyang Aramnuri Haydn Hall

By Korea Herald

Published : April 21, 2013 - 20:27

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As the name would suggest, Wanderer Trio has been wandering around the world to refine their repertoire of chamber ensemble music for the past 25 years.

Inspired by the lives of Schubert and some German romanticist composers, the members have been concentrating in the life and soul of the love and pain leading to a constant search for something special in chamber music.

“The great thing about piano trio pieces is that the composers were usually great pianists and they knew what exactly they were aiming for when writing a piece. Therefore, the music is very deep in feeling and compared to a large-scale orchestra, it tells very much of what the composer himself was like,” Vincent Coq, pianist of the trio, said in a telephone interview with The Korea Herald on Wednesday. 
Wanderer Trio. (Goyang Aramnuri) Wanderer Trio. (Goyang Aramnuri)

Coq, alongside violinist Jean-Marc Phillips-Varjabedian and cellist Raphal Pidoux, will perform at the Goyang Aramnuri Hayden Hall in Gyeonggi Province on May 10 at 8 p.m. The trio will feature Beethoven’s Piano Trio in D major “Ghost,” Schubert’s Notturno in E flat major Op. 148 and Saint-Saens’ Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, Op. 92.

“‘The Ghost’ is a perfect piano trio. Before Beethoven, Mozart, Hayden and others used to write some trio pieces but I don’t think they made the perfect balance among the three musical instruments as Beethoven did.

“Apparently inspired by Shakespeare’s ‘Macbeth,’ the tune assembles slow movement then heightens your tension and … you can feel the spirits in the air,” Coq said.

The pianist also seemed proud to present Saint-Saens, whose pieces are little known aside from “Carnival” and a few others.

“Saint-Saens was diligent and wrote a lot of musical pieces that were pleasant, melancholy, charming and modern. In this piece, there is a deep and tragic phrase followed by light and well-being factors. It has a lot of humor and we thought it was perfect for the end of the concert.

“People may not have had a chance to listen to his music because it is not easy and demands a lot of work. But Saint-Saens, one of the greatest pianists of his time, will give us the best time of all,” he said.

And of course, there’s Schubert, the true inspiration of the group. “What I love about Schubert is the fact he was far from being perfect, in fact, very fragile. His music is closer to the human heart because it was always about love and pain, which are things that musicians suffer from,” Coq said.

Coq said his members are excited to meet Korean music lovers, who are passionate and very expressive.

“They are young. I don’t know if it is the education but while most seats in Europe are filled with elderly people, in Korea, students come along to enjoy our music and give us rave response,” he said.

No matter what, nothing will keep the Wanders from wandering.

“It’s the experience that makes us rich in musical language. Our wander never stops because there are new things to discover in every new piece. It just never ends,” he said.

By Bae Ji-sook (baejisook@heraldcorp.com)