Classical Evolution 

Chamber Music Society
of Lincoln Center

April 19, 2018
7:30 PM

This program of favorites reveals the multi-dimensional ingenuity of the Classical style. Its intelligent principles of symmetry and logic have enabled composers through the ages to craft aesthetically pleasing works that endure the test of time. Mozart’s pristine Trio, Weber’s electrifying Clarinet Quintet, and Brahms’s magisterial Piano Quintet all owe a nod of thanks to Haydn’s immortal invention.

This sublime program strings together three seminal works from the chamber music repertoire that together provide a snapshot of the evolution of classicism in music by three of its greatest German exponents: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Carl Maria von Weber, and Johannes Brahms.

Mozart’s delightfully intimate “Kegelstatt” trio, referred to as one of the composer’s most perfectly integrated compositions, opens the program. In this charming work, Mozart showed the world that the clarinet could stand as an equal partner alongside other instruments in a chamber music setting: an unconventional and novel idea at the time. Though the musical reputation of Carl Maria von Weber rests almost entirely on his opera Die Freischutz, which heralded the beginning of musical Romanticism, his Clarinet Quintet remains a favorite of the repertory. It is an effervescent and joyous work that provides all of the virtuosic thrill of a concerto. Brahms’ pioneering Piano Quintet in F minor, generally considered to be one of his greatest chamber music compositions, is a dark, mighty work of tremendous scope and symphonic breadth that brings this program to a splendid conclusion.

Mozart             Trio in E-flat Major for Clarinet, Viola and Piano, K. 498 “Kegelstatt”
Weber             Quintet in B-flat Major for Clarinet, Two Violins, Viola and Cello, Op. 34
Brahms           Quintet in F minor for Piano, Two Violins, Viola and Cello, Op. 34

Gilles Vonsattel, piano                        Yura Lee, viola
Ida Kavafian, violin                             Nicholas Canellakis, cello
Erin Keefe, vioin                                  Tommaso Lonquich, clarinet