Monday 15th February 2016
The Trio Isimsiz uses a Turkish word meaning “without a name” as its title. Pianist Erdem Misirlioglu has a Turkish name but he was in fact born in Suffolk. The violinist Pablo Hernán Benedi comes originally from Madrid while Michael Petrov, the cellist, was born in Bulgaria. Trio Isimsiz is a real international ensemble. They formed their Trio in 2009 at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Monday’s wonderfully well coordinated performance proved them to be an admirable example of how the power of music transcends all borders, all nationalities.
The Trio opened their recital with a splendidly delicate performance of Schubert’s Notturno in E flat D897. To begin with, the piano provided a gentle harp like accompaniment for the lovely well balanced string players. Later, the piano took the lead accompanied by whispering pizzicato strings. When this effect was repeated towards the end of the piece the rhythmic dissonance between piano and strings was fascinating. There were of course sections where the music opened up and the playing powered up but overall Schubert’s Adagio came across as a deliciously delicate piece.
Beethoven’s Trio in E flat op. 70 no. 2 was far more powerful and outgoing. The strength and clarity of the playing came through magnificently. In the opening movement the three players responded so well together. There was a sense of freedom as well as absolute precision in the way Beethoven’s thematic material was passed from one instrument to another.
The Allegretto was especially rich with its alternating themes and variations but so nicely bound together in this performance. The minuet and trio movement was tuneful and was played with considerable lightness and elegance by the Trio Isimsiz especially in those sections where the violin used chords. This music had a delightful rustic feel to it.
The finale was full of lively excitement and here Erdem Misirlioglu’s clear liquid piano playing was a particular delight.
The opening movement of Dvořák’s Piano Trio in f minor had moments of gentler playing but what stood out here was the dramatic and often impassioned playing of all the members of the Trio.
The second movement began with the tune on the piano with gentle string accompaniment. There was a real spirit of the dance conveyed by this performance. I liked the little break before the smoother central section.
There was an attractive sweetness in the string playing of the third movement especially from the violin in its upper register.
The finale had lots of vim and verve but set against that were passages of more delicate playing. This contrast was what made the final bars so special.
Refinement, clarity, strength and the ability to match one another’s playing so perfectly was what made Monday’s performance from Trio Isimsiz truly special.