Piano trio No. 1 ´Solaris´

for piano, violin & cello

The versatility of a piano trio, the range of timbres and the semantics of this genre always fascinated me. Beethoven, Schubert, Smetana as well as Camille Saint-Saens, Maurice Ravel, Schostakovich, Earle Brown or Sciarrino, among many others, added a unique element to the piano trio literature.

Although I am often using an extra-musical or structural inspirations in my compositions (there are usually some „mythical“ plans or the principle of duality) in this piece I decided to review the genre of piano trio as such.

The accent in my piece is mainly on sonorism and spectral harmonies. The specific structuring of the material is also forming the content. The lucid way of notation, micro-tempi manipulations in the part of each individual player and the rubato differences („individual rubato“) can also be found there in the score; rubato means ‚stolen time‘.

The extent of how much the performers are not playing together in rhythmic unison is prescribed and notated exactly, but the interpreters have within these preset limits the possibility to move freely, to express themselves on a time-space grid.

This creates certain ‚paradox‘ as the mass of an intelligent ocean of frequencies (as in the Stanislaw Lem's novel) is put into the motion. It brings back some memories and new projections along with the effect of mirroring and remembering. The acoustic space and geometry is shaped by our ideas and consciousness until the music itself collapses into the silence.

It is so especially for the performers – they have before their eyes highly structured (and maximally exactly notated) material, but also some ephemer matter that can be shaped in a real time (by their thoughts and decisions).

The piece was commissioned and premiered by the ensemble Solaris3. In 2019, the studio recording was made in the Czech Broadcasting Studio in Prague.

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František Chaloupka: Piano trio No. 1 „Solaris“ (2018)