Last week I had the privilege of attending a performance by the Capuçon-Angelich Trio à la Maison Française. After some thought I decided that my roommate would be the best person to invite along. Liz studied French in high school, and as a former ballet dancer, I knew she would appreciate the classical music.
The threesom is comprised of American-born Nicholas Angelich and french brothers, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon. Les frères are considered to be two of the most gifted string players internationally, Renaud on violin and Gautier on cello. All three are very talented, but Renaud is the most attractive – scratch that, the only attractive one – and I was mesmerized, unable to draw my eyes away from the way he adeptly moved his hands along the neck of the violin. Unbelievable.
Joseph Haydn’s “Trio in G Major, Hob. XV/25” was the first piece, a great opener filled with “pretty” notes of the major scale. Together the three movements told a story that to me was about a couple, from beginning to fairytale ending. The first movement seemed to portray the start of a relationship – all butterflies and excitement. In the slower second movement, the “honeymoon” has ended, as the couple seems to fall into that usual repetitive pattern of petty quarrels and temporary fixes. Happiness ensues in the third movement, which sounds very much like a wedding day with everyone in a tizzy. Upbeat and cheerful, the piece closes with a “Gypsy Rondo,” Hungarian-style dance music.
The second piece was darker, Shostakovich’s “Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor.” I felt as though I was witness to the inner depths of someone in great turmoil. Emotional and melancholy, each movement exudes such sadness that is sounds as though the instruments themselves are weeping. Although there is a similar pattern of sorrow in each movement, they do take on different identities, passing through various stages of grief, possibly even ending in death.
Intermission allowed for a breath before the performance ended, on a lighter note, with Brahms “Trio No. 2 in C major, Op. 87.” The piece uses both minor and major chords, so it was not as joyful as the first, and nowhere near as tragic as the second. I wasn’t able to get a clear picture from the piece, but felt that it was a pleasant medium that could be seen as ups and downs of the average life.
The wine reception after was cut short by the fact that they didn’t have any cheese (we were starving) and the snow was sticking outside. Liz and I downed a glass of table red and went home before the roads got too bad.