Picture of Trio con Brio & Nils Mönkemeyer
Trio con Brio and Nils Mönkemeyer

Photo: Irène Zandel Kopie, Nikolaj Lund

Trio con Brio & Nils Mönkemeyer

Trio con Brio Copenhagen performs one of music history's great love triangle dramas together with the innovative violist Nils Mönkemeyer.


Robert Schumann (1810-1856): Märchenbilder, op. 113

Johannes Brahms (1833-1897): Piano Trio No. 3 in C minor, Op. 101

Johannes Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 3 in C minor, Op. 60 (The Werther Quartet)

On this evening, the piano trio Trio con Brio Copenhagen invites the German violist Nils Mönkemeyer to join them on stage in the Queen's Hall in a musical programme with works by Brahms and Robert Schumann. The concert is the last of a series of three concerts with piano quartets.

One of the great love triangles in music history

Johannes Brahms and Robert Schumann were closely intertwined during their lifetimes. Brahms's piano quartet in C minor, which can be experienced at the night's concert, he wrote while staying at Robert and Clara Schumann's home to help Clara while Robert was committed to a mental institution. During this period, the friendship between Brahms and Clara Schumann became very close, and was described as "bordering on a love affair."

The pensive nature of the work is a direct reference to Werther, Goethe's romantic hero, who commits suicide due to unrequited love. The work was then also an expression of Brahms' own unhappy love – namely the one he had for Clara Schumann.

The inspiration from Clara is i.a. expressed at the beginning of the first movement, where the strings play a sighing motif that stands as a picture of Brahms' longing for Clara. In several of Robert Schumann's works there are references to Clara in the form of a motif (Cis-HA-Gis-A). Brahms took this motif to heart, and it appears several times in the work in different keys, e.g. in the very first notes of the first movement.

So you can experience one of music history's great love triangles unfolding in the Queen's Hall at the season's last edition of piano quartets in The Diamond.


Trio con Brio Copenhagen

"Con brio" is Italian and means "with energy", and with Copenhagen as their base, the trio has toured the world with their fresh, contemporary approach to the classical repertoire. The trio was formed from the idea of the meeting between two musical couples; the two Korean-born sisters Soo-jin and Soo-Kyung Hong and the latter's husband Jens Elvekjær.

Nils Mönkemeyer

During his 25 years as a violist, Nils Mönkemeyer has made an international name for himself and is considered to be one of the leading and most innovative violists worldwide. He is a sought-after chamber musician and has played with major orchestras such as the Helsinki Philharmonic and Les Musiciens du Louvre. In addition, he has released several albums with Sony Classical, and all of his releases have received great praise and recognition.

Piano quartets in The Black Diamond is supported by the Beckett-foundation

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