DANCE AND POETIC FANTASY
Minerva Piano Trio - St. John’s Smith Square Young Artists
Mozart Piano Trio in B-flat, KV 502, 1786
Ravel transcr. David Knotts Scenes from Daphnis and Chloe, 2017
transcribed for piano trio with dance choreography (WORLD PREMIERE)
Cheryl Frances-Hoad - My Fleeting Angel, 2011
Ravel - Piano Trio in A minor, 1914
Michal Ćwiżewicz (violin), Richard Birchall (cello), Annie Yim (piano), Patricia Okenwa (choreography), Thomasin Gülgeç (dance), Estela Merlos (dance)
Dance, poetry, and storytelling are inextricably linked in the Minerva Piano Trio’s second concert of the series at St John’s Smith Square, collaborating with the dance and art world in association with MusicArt London. With a newly commissioned piano trio transcription by David Knotts plus dance choreography, the Minerva Trio adapts Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloe – the legendary Ballets Russes commission – for the concert stage. Inspired by the Greek epic poem by Longus that was set as a romance in late antiquity, Ravel saw the work as “a vast musical fresco…with faithfulness to the Greece of my dreams”. The new transcription with dance evokes its poetic essence, based on Ravel’s own selected scenes transcribed for solo piano and two shortened Orchestral Suites.
My Fleeting Angel by Cheryl Frances-Hoad is based on Sylvia Plath’s short story The Wishing Box about a husband and wife’s disparate dream worlds descending into a dark and macabre fantasy. The three-movement work is “at once so phantasmagorical and tightly structured, so assured in all its aspects and hinting so elegantly at a complex web of experience.” (Malcolm MacDonald). The piece won the Robert Helps Composition Prize in 2006.
Poetry and dance are woven into the fabric of Ravel’s Piano Trio in A minor, which was written two years after the premiere of Daphnis and Chloe. The second movement is inspired by a complex Malaysian poetic form, known as the Pantoum, which requires a special pattern of alternating and combining distinct themes.