The Poulenc Trio
The Poulenc Trio’s latest collaboration is Trains of Thought: Animated, a mixed-media project featuring a beautifully hand-animated film by artists Elizabeth and Alden Phelps, paired with a commissioned work by Viet Cuong to premiere in Washington DC at the National Gallery in 2017.
The Trio’s latest CD, Creation, debuted at #4 on Apple Music’s iTunes Classical Music playlist and garnered high praise from the American Record Guide for the group’s technique and expressive range. The CD also features a pairing with poet and Guggenheim Fellow Lia Purpura, with a reading of her poems set against Schnittke’s Suite in the Old Style.
Coming collaborations include a new Music at the Museum residency with Chamber Music Raleigh and the North Carolina Museum of Art, featuring a new commissioned work by composer William Henry Curry, and a commission for Trio and Clarinet by GRAMMY-award winning composer and clarinetist Derek Bermel.
Since its founding in 2003, the Poulenc Trio has performed in 45 U.S. states and at music festivals around the world, including the Ravello Festival in Italy, the San Miguel de Allende Festival in Mexico, and the White Nights Festival in Russia, where the group toured with and premiered two new works with violinist Hilary Hahn.
In a recent review, the New York Times praised the Trio for its “elegant rendition” of Piazzolla’s Tangos. The Washington Post said the trio “does its namesake proud” in “an intriguing and beautifully played program” with “convincing elegance, near effortless lightness and grace.” A recent performance in Florida – for which the Palm Beach Post praised the group’s “polished loveliness” and the Palm Beach Daily News said the “potent combination” of oboe bassoon and piano had “captured the magic of chamber music”-is regularly rebroadcast on American Public Media’s Performance Today nationally syndicated radio program. The Trio has garnered positive attention in recent full-length profiles by Chamber Music magazine, and by the Double Reed Journal. The group has been called “virtuosos of classical and contemporary chamber music” in one profile for Russian television.
The Trio has a strong commitment to commissioning, performing and recording new works from living composers. Since its founding, the Trio has greatly expanded the repertoire available for the oboe, bassoon and piano, with 22 new works written for and premiered by the group, including three triple concertos for Trio and full orchestra.
The Trio has also made a commitment to explore and promote musics that reflect its members’ African, Asian, Eastern European and Jewish roots. Recent concerts have featured works by Afro-Cuban jazz great Paquito D’Rivera, Mexican-American composer Carlos Medina, Russian-American composer Nataliya Medvedovskaya and Yiddish Lexicon, an exploration of Jewish culture by composer Jakov Jakoulov.
The Trio launched a pioneering concert series called Music at the Museum, in which musical performances are paired with museum exhibitions, with special appearances from guest artists and curators. As part of the series, the Trio has collaborated with the National Gallery in Washington DC, the Walters Art Museum and Baltimore Museum of Art and the Hermitage State Museum in Russia. Guest artist collaborators have included violinist Hilary Hahn, the Thibaud Trio of Berlin, soprano Hyunah Yu, and clarinetists Alexander Fiterstein and Anthony McGill.
The Trio is deeply engaged in musical and educational outreach programs, including Pizza and Poulenc, an informal performance and residency series for younger audiences around the United States. The Trio regularly conducts masterclasses, with recent engagements at the University of Ohio, San Francisco State University, Florida State University and the University of Colima in Mexico.