The Arcadian Trio with Premiere Based on African-American Spirituals by Internationally Acclaimed Composer, Kile Smith; and Music by Dimitri Shostakovich, Alexander Zemlinsky, & African American Composer, David Baker.
Plus Meet the musicians and composer, and enjoy a rreception with foods from various cultures
- The Arcadian Trio
Saturday, October 27, 2018, 7:30pm
The Arcadian Trio’s program “Music Transcends” features composers who overcame extraordinary challenges to bring their music into being. Some faced societal oppression, others political persecution, but all somehow created music against great odds. The program will feature the premiere of a new work written for the group by Philadelphia composer Kile Smith, whose music has been hailed by national and international publications for its unique beauty, emotional power and strong voice. Smith is basing his new composition on spirituals, those songs made up by enslaved Africans barred from speaking to one another so they communicated through songs, whose words might contain coded messages about escape.
Another work on the program will be by Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975), who endured a harrowing relationship with the Soviet authorities in their crusade to have him conform to Communist doctrine. The Arcadian Trio will perform the last movement of his second trio, written in 1944 when Shostakovich became aware of the Nazi death camps. It’s a macabre work that parodies the sound of Jewish Klezmer music.
Also represented will be Austrian composer Alexander Zemlinsky (1871-1942), a brilliant composer and conductor who was central to the musical life of Vienna and Central Europe between the wars. Because he was Jewish, he was barred from working there during the 1930s, and after Hitler annexed Austria, fled to New York where he died a few years later. The program will conclude with a spirited boogie woogie from the piano trio Roots II, written by African American composer David Baker (1931-2016) for the Beaux Arts Trio. Baker, too, suffered at the hands of an unjust society: Under threats of violence, he had to resign his teaching post at a Missouri university after marrying a white opera singer. Missouri at the time still had anti-miscegenation laws.
The Arcadian Trio has been praised for its virtuosity and style and consists of some of the most in-demand musicians in Philadelphia – violinist Igor Szwec, cellist Vivian Barton Dozor and pianist Diane Goldsmith. Programs are offered with a visual presentation of images and commentary to enhance the audience experience.
Rapidly gaining national and international acclaim, the music of Kile Smith is hailed by critics, performers, and audiences for its strong voice, sheer beauty, and “profoundly direct emotional appeal.” Gramophone hailed the “sparkling beauty” of his music, calling Vespers “spectacular.” The Philadelphia Inquirer called it “ecstatically beautiful,” American Record Guide, “a major new work,” Audiophile Audition, “easily one of the best releases of the year of any type… a crime to pass up,” and Fanfare, “a magnificent achievement.”
Other commissions include The Arc in the Sky, The Consolation of Apollo, The Waking Sun, Where Flames a Word, and others for The Crossing and Donald Nally, who have commissioned Kile more than any other composer, the concert-length Canticle for Craig Hel Agnus Dei for the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia, and Plain Truths for the Newburyport Chamber Music Festival, Adieu, Adieu for Relâche, Red-tail and Hummingbird for Orchestra 2001 and Piffaro, the cello concerto And Seeing the Multitudes for Ovidiu Marinescu and the Helena Symphony, The Red Book of Montserrat for the Philadelphia Sinfonia, and The Nobility of Women for Mélomanie. He’s also completed commissions for organist Alan Morrison, the Pennsylvania Girlchoir, the Gaudete Brass, the Association of Anglican Musicians, the Episcopal Cathedral of Boston, Choral Arts Philadelphia, and many others. He’s composed for concertmaster David Kim and principal horn Jennifer Montone of the Philadelphia Orchestra. His music has been performed throughout the U.S., in Europe,