August 22, 2013

Hill and Hollow Music presents the Prima Trio

By ROBIN CAUDELL Press-Republican

---- — SARANAC — “A virtuosic tour de force … a whirlwind of joy” is how the Palm Beach Daily News tagged the Prima Trio. 

Six years ago, the Prima Trio garnered international acclaim after winning Grand Prize in the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, as well as the Gold Medal in the Senior Division. The perks included a performance at Leighton Concert Hall at the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center at the University of Notre Dame, a Midwest Winner’s Tour, a European debut at Italy’s Emilia Romagna Festival and $10,500 in prize money.

The trio’s accolades include performances at Dumbarton Oaks; the Athenaeum in La Jolla, Calif.; the Dayton Art Institute; and CityMusic Columbus. Recent highlights include debuts with Chicago’s Music in the Loft series and the Cleveland Chamber Music Society, as well as the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival in Germany.

A local audience can make its own assessment of Anastasia Dedik (piano), Boris Allakhverdyan (clarinet) and Gulia Gurevich (violin/viola) when they perform Mozart’s “Kegelstatt Trio (K498),” Bartok’s “Contrasts” and Srul Glick’s “Klezmer Wedding” at a free Hill and Hollow Music concert Sunday afternoon at the Saranac United Methodist Church.

Mozart and Bartok’s works are new to the trio’s repertoire.

“Bartok’s musical language is one of our challenges,” said Gurevich, who hails from a musical dynasty in Uzbekistan. She made her solo debut with the Uzbekistan National Symphony Orchestra at 14. A year later, she began conducting. As a teen, she came to the United States to study at the Interlochen Arts Academy. After graduating with honors, she attended and received her diploma at Indiana University. She also holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin Conservatory of Music in Ohio.

“He (Bartok) uses a lot of Hungarian and Romanian dance rhythms in this composition,” Gurevich said. “Part of the challenge is to blend your part with the other two parts and have it all work.”

Individually, they originate from Russia, Armenia and Uzbekistan, and met while pursuing studies at Oberlin. The trio made its debut at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., in 2006. 

Dedik graduated from the St. Petersburg Conservatory and continued studies at Oberlin and the Juilliard School. Performance venues include Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Kennedy Center. She has won 14 international piano competitions, including Russian International Piano Competition in San Jose, Calif., and the Cliburn Institute/Piano Texas Concerto Competition.

Allakhverdyan was appointed principal clarinetist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra this year. Four years prior, he was associate principal clarinet of the Kansas City Symphony. He is the Grand Prize and the Gold Medal winner of the 2007 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. He pulls triple duty as principal clarinet of the Colorado Music Festival Orchestra in Boulder, Colo., and Britt Festival Orchestra in Jacksonville, Ore.

Gurevich has won many prizes, awards and scholarships in the States and abroad. She has appeared with the Boston, Indianapolis, Fort Wayne and Charleston symphonies and in festivals including Tanglewood, Spoleto and the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria.

In her estimation, Mozart is always challenging.

“He never thinks of something easy, ever. It will be a very nice contrast in the program.”

Glick (1934-2002), a prolific Canadian composer, was the recipient of the J.I. Segal Award for his contribution to Jewish Music in Canada.

“‘A Klezmer Wedding,’ this is a very fun piece of Klezmer dances and rhythms,” Gurevich said. “It will be a nice evening. It has a lot of variety.”

Though the Prima Trio has toured in Canada, this is its first visit upstate.

“We’re very excited and looking forward to it very much,” Gurevich said.

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IF YOU GO WHO: The Prima Trio WHEN: 4 p.m. Sunday. WHERE: Saranac United Methodist Church, Route 3, Saranac. ADMISSION: Free. CONTACT: Call Angela Brown at 293-7613 or email