REVIEW: Trio Sōra at St John’s Smith Square

Trio Sōra’s recital at St John’s Smith Square on 16th November 2017 marked the start of their UK tour with eclectic performances of Haydn, Kagel and Chausson. The 2017 Parkhouse Award winners are three female musicians who met during their studies at the Paris Conservatoire and are set to take over much of the UK classical music scene this next year. The concert included one of the lesser-known Haydn piano trio’s, the no.44 in E major alongside a one movement piano trio by the contemporary composer Mauricio Kagel written in 2001 and the piano trio by Chausson, an earlier work by the French composer leaning towards the world of chamber music whilst his contemporaries were ingulfed in opera.

Trio Sora’s life and charm was accompanied by their natural intimacy as musicians. Part of the wonder of their performance was the contrasts they were able to deliver from the sweetness of the Haydn to the turbulent and athletic Kagel and then to the undoubtedly romantic and soulful Chausson. Each piece was blessed with its own sense of ownership and shaped by the trio’s undeniable knowledge and understanding behind both the music and their personal musical intentions. It is clear this trio is set on developing its own distinct sound, the communication of the musicians really exposing this desire.

We were taken through the journey of the Haydn with dramatic contrasts from the trio, each phrase holding equal importance to the music’s overall structure. Each musician contributed to the masterly interpretations of sound and colour, the independence of the scores (and even perhaps the instruments!) allowed for none but beauty to radiate forwards. The Kegel was approached with similar finesse and style, but the genre lent itself to a much more academic interpretation. The trio held such a similar intensity and passion for this work, the cellist’s vitality and virtuosity especially prevalent. Ending with the Chausson, its depth and darkness was eagerly met by the trio, the dance of the second movement especially moving in terms of joy and excitement conveyed.

A strong internal connection is essential to the Sora’s style, with a huge depth of playing and a inspiring maturity far beyond their years, they are certainly a force to be reckoned with. This was hugely emotional playing with a transcendental connection both between the musicians and their audience and the musicians and the composers. What a privilege!

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