Sunday 26 February

Aroha String Trio – “Serenade”

“Their sustained excellence in ensemble and balance and their emotional subtlety and warmth places them among the finest chamber groups in the country.” (Lindis Taylor – Middle C)


Beethoven:       Serenade for String Trio in D Major, Opus 8
Françaix:          String Trio
Schubert:          String Trio in Bb Major, D 471
Salina Fisher:   Mata-Au
Dohnányi:        Serenade for String Trio in C Major, Opus 10

Haihong Liu (violin), Zhongxian Jin (viola), Robert Ibell (cello)

Three members of the well-known Aroha Quartet will present a concert of delightful string trios titled ‘Serenade’.

The Serenade as a musical form was originally intended for light evening entertainment, usually performed outdoors and sometimes associated with courtship. In the 18th century it developed into a short suite of light instrumental music and was adopted by many composers including Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert.

Beethoven’s Opus 8 ‘Serenade’ is the most substantial work on the programme. It has a wealth of melodic inspiration and an almost orchestral palette filled with sonority and colour.

The String Trio by Frenchman Jean Françaix (who once famously said “My music exists to give pleasure”) is filled with a joyous sense of fun.

The second part of the concert opens with Schubert’s little single-movement trio, a miniature gem that is one of the most treasured works in the string trio repertoire.

Another brief composition follows, this time by acclaimed young New Zealand composer Salina Fisher. Mata-Au refers to the Clutha River and the music is descriptive of the dancing, swirling water.

‘Serenade’ by Hungarian composer Ernst Dohnányi, composed in 1902, is a five-movement work packed with musical riches and with a distinct Hungarian flavour.