The Asheville Chamber Music Series presents Asheville’s Schubertiade on Friday, May 10, at 8 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville. The concert features Asheville native Noah Bendix-Balgley, the first concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmoniker; Grammy award nominated cellist Peter Wiley; and world-famous pianist Robert Levin.
“I first played with Robert Levin and Peter Wiley some years ago at a festival in Nevada,” Bendix-Balgley says, “and the piece we played there was, in fact, the 1st piano trio of Schubert.” The trio plays together when they can, he adds, and particularly loves playing Schubert. “Schubert’s trios are two of the most amazing chamber music pieces in the classical repertoire. Written near the end of his life (he died when he was only 31), these pieces are full of extremes, with gorgeous melodies, intense and sometimes violent musical outbursts and extreme technical demands and virtuosity for all three players.”
Asheville’s Schubertiade will include Piano Trio No. 1 in B-flat major, D. 898 and Piano Trio No. 2 in E-flat major, D. 929. The Op. 100 Trio in E-flat major is a piece that Bendix-Balgley says pushes the limits. “It is a huge piece–over 50 minutes in the original uncut version that we will play–and it seems to cover all the extremes of human emotion. An incredible achievement by Schubert, from the most tender caresses to madness and fury.”
Bendix-Balgley began playing violin at age four and has appeared as a soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the Orchestre National de Belgique and the Auckland Philharmonia, among many others. A New York native, Wiley received the Avery Fisher Career Grant and has performed more than 1,000 concerts with Beaux Art Trio. Pianist and conductor Levin is a noted theorist and musicologist, and has performed throughout the US, Europe, Asia and Australia.
“I am so happy to be able to play, in my hometown in May, this great music with two of my favorite musicians and collaborators,” Bendix-Balgley says.
To learn more or to purchase tickets, visit AshevilleChamberMusic.org or call 828.575.7427. The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville is located at 1 Edwin Place. Tickets for the performance are $40 for general admission. Youth under 25 are admitted free.