Truly diverse in origin and expression, this program offers audiences the opportunity to dive deeper into chamber music of the early 20th century, with new sounds and divergent compositional influences that helped shape contemporary chamber music. In 1904, the year of the premiere of his African Dances for violin and piano, English composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor received a warm welcome from American audiences, especially Black concert goers, while on his first tour in the states. Coleridge-Taylor would continue to dive deeper into both his Sierra Leonean heritage and his use of African-inspired themes in his music for the remainder of his too-short life. Unlike Coleridge-Taylor's inspirations from his heritage, Venezuelan composer Reynaldo Hahn, a naturalized Frenchman, preferred to write strictly with Paris in mind. His Piano Quintet opens with all the drama of the latest Parisian fashion of the 1920s, but its ability to shift moods within movements is even more spectacular. Belgian composer, teacher, and virtuosic violinist Eugene Ysaÿe provides a differing style with his Sonata No. 3, “Ballade”, which reflects the playing style of the violinist it was dedicated to, George Enescu. A passing student of Ysaÿe’s in Brussels, Swiss-American composer Ernest Bloch’s compositions are often described as reflective of his Jewish heritage, with highly dramatic scores influenced by philosophical, poetic, and religious themes. His Quintet No. 1, composed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1923, is rife with tension and expression and is regarded as one of his greatest works.
Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: African Dances for violin and piano, Op. 58 (1904)
Reynaldo Hahn: Quintet in F-sharp minor for Piano, Two Violins, Viola, and Cello (1922)
Eugène Ysaÿe: Sonata for solo violin, Op. 27, No. 3 “Ballade” (1923)
Ernest Bloch: Quintet No. 1 for Piano, Two Violins, Viola, and Cello (1921-23)
Headshots are available on the individual artist pages above.
Download a group photo here.