Skip navigation Go to the main menu

Closing concert IKFU 2022

For Tchaikovsky’s Serenade, Amihai Grosz & friends share it stage with the five New Generation Artists who have performed over the past had been heard for days. Together they form an exuberant string orchestra, supplemented by three great Dutch talents and the successful double bassists Ying Lai Green and Servaas Jessen. Before Tchaikovsky’s festive masterpiece, Brahms’ poignant horn trio and Ben-Haim’s string trio.

Johannes Brahms wrote his Horn Trio in E-flat in 1865, the year in which he lost his mother. “If you still want to see our mother, come then go straight home,” his brother Fritz wrote shortly after her sudden stroke. Unfortunately, Brahms was too late, at the time when he arrived in Hamburg she was already dead. “She was nothing at all changed and looked as sweet and soft as when she was alive.” he wrote to his girlfriend Clara Schumann. “I will my dear and good mother after this sad year will probably miss many more.” Brahms mainly incorporated his feelings into his music. On the one hand a requiem that he had been working on for some time (and that he would completed in 1868), but especially in the Horn Trio. The first performance took place in Zurich on November 28, 1865, with Brahms himself behind the piano. Right from the first bars, the listener captivated by the melancholic music. The second part begins with an elated Allegro, which is suddenly interrupted by a most mournful melody. The listener still has after that some time to recover during the repetition of the Allegro, before the pianist opens the third movement, which is even sadder if possible is. This understated and poignant Adagio, which is packed with waves of grief, probably refers to Brahms’s grief for the loss from his mother. The trio ends with an exuberant and for Brahms’ do quite optimistic Allegro with a beautiful virtuoso ending.

For the final concert, Amihai Grosz selected a beautiful string trio by a prominent musician from his homeland, Paul Ben Haim. This composer and educator, acclaimed in Israel, was born in 1897 born in Munich and was initially called Paul Frankenburger. In In 1933 he left Germany in response to the takeover of power by the national socialists. He settled in Tel Aviv, changed his nationality and his surname and would eventually become an important one play a role in the development of musical life in his new homeland of Israel. His own compositions – many performed by world stars such as Yehudi Menuhin (for whom Ben Haim wrote a solo piece for violin), Leonard Bernstein, Jascha Heifitz and Menahem Pressler – are rare in the Netherlands executed. The String Trio dates back to Ben Haim’s German time and contains, in contrast to his later works, no influences from folk music from the Middle East. With relatively few resources and surprising harmony, the composer tells an exciting story. The three instrumentalists perform a fascinating and persuasive conversation. Sometimes they listen attentively to each other, sometimes they support each other and at other times they talk about it clamoring loudly to attract attention.

Tchaikovsky is one of the most popular Russian composers of all time nineteenth century. Everyone knows the beautiful melodies from his ballets and symphonies, which have also been used extensively in films and commercials. Tchaikovsky eagerly made use of this in his music influences from both Russian (folk) music and Western music classical music he learned at the conservatory. That last one annoyance of other famous Russian colleagues such as Modest Mussorgsky and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, who oppose influences from the west and which together form a Russian national style would develop. Tchaikovsky showed up for his Serenade undeniably inspired by Mozart (who himself also has many wonderful wrote serenades such as Eine kleine Nachtmusik for strings). The world premiere in 1881 was a great success and the composer was also satisfied. “To my surprise, I have a serenade for it string orchestra written, in four movements. Whether it’s because it’s mine latest work or because it is not bad work, I keep immensely from this serenade,” he wrote in a letter. It is indeed music to love, also thanks to the attractive melodies, sometimes reminiscent of western choral melodies and waltzes and sometimes to Russian folk melodies, but mainly those are illustrative of Tchaikovsky’s own musical idiom.