This Piano Trio (Carol Cook, piano; Jonathan Aceto, violin; Ruth Berry, cello) is committed to presenting exceptional works composed through the centuries for this central genre of chamber music. These three excellent musicians bring their collective spirits together to inspire audiences in performances of great music.
The rich tradition of Chamber Music (as we know it today) truly began in a "chamber" – the parlors and salons of noblemen and wealthy patrons. Starting in the Renaissance with consorts of viola da gambas, chamber music developed in the Baroque era into the trio sonata, scored for 4 players: two treble instruments, one bass instrument and a keyboard instrument (please visit The Continuo Collective of The South).
In the 1700’s Haydn and other composers emphasized the conversational aspect of chamber music-making as they "jammed" with musician friends at the palaces of their employers. Heading into the 19th century, it was considered an important social activity (and a great way to increase one’s status) to invite prominent composers along with small groups of friends over to play music for each other.
Composers from Haydn to Schubert, Brahms to Dvorak, Ravel to Shostakovich crafted some of their finest music for piano trios, viewing the trio not as a commission to be completed for money, but rather as a deeply personal expression of artistry. In addition, many composers (including Beethoven and Strauss) transcribed their large orchestral compositions for chamber groups as a way of bringing popular pieces into these musical soirées.