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Live in Studio 4A
Our showcase for artists invited to perform on the program and talk about their music
The PT 50
Our list of 50 essential classical CDs
Piano Puzzlers
Bruce Adolphe's "name that composer" piano quiz
PT Young Artist-in-Residence
Amelia Piano Trio

The award-winning Amelia Piano Trio has just completed a whirlwind summer.
Amelia Piano Trio The Amelias performed at the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, the Chintimini Chamber Music Festival in Corvallis, and at the Ainey International Music Festival in Burgundy, France. They also directed a chamber music camp for gifted college and high school students.
Amelia Piano Trio, Credit: Aran Fedor

Before that, the Amelias toured with Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Ensemble. Recently (September 8 - 12), the Amelia Piano Trio was hard at work as PT's newest Young Artist-in-Residence. Revisit their live performances from NPR's Studio 4A.

The Amelia Piano Trio
Rieko Aizawa, piano
Anthea Kreston, violin
Jason Duckles, cello

Browse the Amelia Piano Trio bios

Browse a Web-Only Q&A with violinist Anthea Kreston

Browse a Web-Only Q&A with cellist Jason Duckles

Browse a Web-Only Q&A with pianist Rieko Aizawa


Monday, September 8

The Amelia Piano Trio rehearse in Studio 4A. Listen to the entire hour
PT Host Fred Child introduces the Amelia Piano Trio as PT's newest Young Artists-in-Residence. Anthea and Jason delve into the complicated, yet fun process of choosing their newest member, Rieko, who joined the group just a few months ago. What sealed the deal? As long as Rieko gets along with Anthea's "weird" and "bizarro" ideas...

MENDELSSOHN: Piano Trio No. 1 in D minor, Op. 49, Mvt. 2

SHOSTAKOVICH: Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, Op. 67, Mvt. 2

BEETHOVEN: Trio, Op. 11

SUK: Elegie, Op. 23
The Amelia Piano Trio rehearses
in Studio 4A.
Credit: Nerissa Paglinauan,
NPR Online

Tuesday, September 9

Listen to the entire hour
Despite the fact that not every great composer has written for the piano trio, Anthea refutes the suggestion that the trio is the "forgotten step-child of classical music." Today's program reflects the great variety of repertoire that the piano trio can explore, including a "slightly illegal" rendition of a Bach Sonata written for violin and harpsichord, and a brand new work written for the Amelia Trio, Short Stories, by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Harbison. Reflecting on his first full length piano trio, Harbison jokes, "Ideally, I wanted to write the Schubert E-flat trio, but he's already done that."

Anthea Kreston and Jason Duckles J.S BACH: Sonata in B minor, BWV 1014

John Harbison introduces his new work, Short Stories

HARBISON: Short Stories, Mvt. 1 "Tale"

SCHUBERT: Piano Trio in B-flat major, D. 898, Mvt. 1 Allegro moderato

Wednesday, September 10

Anthea Kreston and Rieko Aizawa Listen to the entire hour
After the diverse programming of Tuesday's show, the Amelia Trio returns to music right in the center of the classical style with piano trios by Mozart and Brahms. Plus, Jason talks about trio as a business and the group's programs for children, including the "Invisible Ball of Goop." Rieko presents the operatic side of the Mozart trio. Anthea reveals the "noble and magestic" origins of the Amelia Trio's name and produces a sound that most likely has never been heard on PT's air.

MOZART: Piano Trio in C, K. 548

BRAHMS: Piano Trio No. 3 in C minor, Op. 101

Thursday, September 11
Rieko Aizawa, Anthea Kreston, Yang Wei, Jason Duckles, and Betti Xiang
Credit: Nerissa Paglinauan, NPR Online

Listen to the entire hour
The Amelia Trio is joined by two very good friends they met during Yo-Yo Ma's Silk Road Project, the vituoso Chinese musicians Yang Wei on the pipa (Chinese lute), and Betti Xiang on the erhu (Chinese fiddle). Together, the trio and duo form the quintet called East Meets West, an ensemble dedicated to the exploration of the rich cultural and musical traditions of Eastern and Western music. Today they perform traditional Chinese music, new music written for the combination of Western and Chinese instruments, and a couple takes on Bach as never envisioned by the composer. Pianist Rieko Aizawa also gets a surprise at the end of the show.

Betti Xiang and Yang Wei Chinese Tones
Yang Wei explains how Chinese music is greatly influenced by the tones of the spoken Chinese language. Jason demonstrates how Betti and Yang Wei have taught him to play Chinese music on the cello without an American accent.

J.S. BACH: Concerto for Two Violins in D minor ("Double"), BWV 1043: II. Largo Ma Non Tanto
     Anthea Kreston, violin
     Betti Xiang, erhu
     Jason Duckles, cello
     Yang Wei, pipa

East Meets West rehearses in Studio 4A Chinese Traditional: "Girls and Butterflies"/"Tam Tam and Drum"
     Jason Duckles, cello
     Yang Wei, pipa

Chinese Traditional: "Melody of the River"
     (Arr. Jin Fuzai)
     Betti Xiang, erhu
     Rieko Aizawa, piano

Jason Duckles and Yang Wei J.S. BACH: Fugue and Bouree
     Yang Wei, pipa
     Betti Xiang, erhu

WU PEI: "Song of Consonance": Finale
     Anthea Kreston, violin
     Betti Xiang, erhu
     Jason Duckles, cello
     Yang Wei, pipa
     Rieko Aizawa, piano

JIN FUZAI: "Spring in the Air"
     Yang Wei, pipa
     Betti Xiang, erhu

Friday, September 12

Listen to the entire hour
The Amelia Piano Trio closes out their residency with a performance of what Jason hails as "one of the all time greats" -- Brahms' Piano Quintet in G minor, with guest violist Honggang Li of the Shanghai String Quartet. Reflecting back on the week, the trio is pleasantly surprised at how well all the personalities have meshed and at the great chemistry they've established during this residency. This has been the trio's first opportunity to really rehearse and play together since Rieko joined the group in July.

PIAZZOLLA: Libertango

BRAHMS: Piano Quartet in G minor, Op. 25
                 with violist Honggang Li of the Shanghai String Quartet
I. Allegro
II. Intermezzo. Allegro ma non troppo
III. Andante con moto
IV. Rondo alla Zingarese. Presto

Other Resources