The Valley Concert Society is thrilled to present James Ehnes along with two esteemed
colleagues in concert at the Matsqui Centennial Auditorium on Tuesday, May 31, at 7:30 p.m.
Ehnes commands rapturous audiences wherever he performs. He often takes centre stage with
the great orchestras of the world. We will have the privilege of hearing him perform chamber
music where he is one of three equal participants in an intimate musical conversation.
He will be joined by two outstanding American musicians, cellist Bion Tsang and pianist Adam
Neiman. Together they will play two gems of the piano trio repertoire, Dvorak’s Piano Trio No.
4 in E minor, better known as his Dumky Trio, and Tchaikovsky’s Trio in A minor, the only
work he composed for this combination of instruments.
People attending classical music concerts have come to expect the music to take on some
predictable forms. Symphonies usually come in four movements, concertos generally in three
movements. Chamber music most often adheres to either three- or four-movement structures.
Not this time.
The Dvorak trio, the shorter of these works, was written in six movements. The Tchaikovsky
trio, which is significantly longer, was written in only two movements.
So ingrained is the expectation of familiar structures that many people try to find them even here.
They say that the Dvorak is really a four-movement piece because the composer wanted the
players to play the first three movements without a pause between them, amounting to a long
Others suggest that Tchaikovsky’s trio is really a three-movement piece because the long second
movement breaks a pattern near the end and closes with a reminder of the work’s opening, a
section they propose could really be a movement by itself.
However you want to count them, the works are glorious. Dvorak used Slavic forms as the basis
for this work of alternating dark and light moods. Tchaikovsky’s trio is a heartfelt and profound
tribute to a teacher and mentor who had died.
James Ehnes has won numerous awards, including a Gramophone Award, a Grammy and a Juno,
among others. Coincidentally, the last time he played for The Valley Concert Society in 2009, he
came on stage after the intermission and announced the news that he had just won a Juno Award
at the ceremony that same evening. Remarkable to think that he chose to perform for us rather
than attend a ceremony to collect an award.
For tickets to hear these incredible musicians playing masterpieces of the chamber music
repertoire, go online to www.valleyconcertsociety.com . The rates are only $28 for adults and
$15 for students. Doors will open at 6:45 p.m. For more information, call 604-289-3377.
The Valley Concert Society