( Sat., Jan. 15, 2022 )
Baldwin Auditorium, 1336 Campus Drive, Durham, NC 27708
Inserting jokes into their music is a time-honored tradition for composers, but few did so with the impudence of Charles Ives, who once went so far as to title a movement of his Piano Trio “This Scherzo Is A Joke” (nicknamed “TSIAJ”), distorting popular songs from his schoolboy days at Yale. And who better than the new — but already esteemed — Junction Trio, known for their audacious programming pattern of pairing the new and the creative with the familiar and the cherished, to bring Ives’ trio to life. The ensemble, comprising violinist Stefan Jaciw, cellist Jay Campbell, and pianist Conrad Tao, also explores the prickly, hair-raising soundscape of John Zorn’s 2015 composition Ghosts, loosely inspired by the specter of Beethoven’s own Ghost trio. They round out their debut appearance at Duke Performances with Brahms’ youthful Piano Trio No. 1, op. 8, one of the most well-loved works of the entire piano trio repertoire.