Music at Kohl Mansion presented Trio Solisti this past Sunday to a sell-out crowd, and according to the rave review from the San Francisco Classical Voice, the concert was quite the success! Click here to read the review, and scroll down for an interview between ASQ’s Sandy Wilson and Trio Solisti pianist Jon Klibonoff.
Sandy Wilson: Hello Jon, we’re all looking forward so much to your exciting program for Music at Kohl Mansion’s 30th Anniversary Season. It’s been seven years since you were last here and I wonder do you remember the hall and the wonderful audience?
Jon: It will be a nice treat to return to Kohl Mansion where the trio played a few years back. I remember the beautiful surroundings and the fine acoustics to perform in. It’s an ideal place to perform and hear chamber music.
Sandy: The program you are preparing promises to be delightful and ambitious with something for everybody’s tastes. Do the members of the Trio have favorite works or affinities among these gorgeous selections and can you give us some insight as to how you curate this combination of works? The Mussorgsky is particularly fascinating, your own arrangement?
Jon: The program we are offering is a bit unusual. All three works are ones that you may not hear very often. The Beethoven Variations is a new work for us and is a delightful light-hearted piece we have enjoyed playing. Chausson’s Trio in G-minor is a full blooded work steeped in late 19th century French Romanticism which allows us to express a wide range of rich melodic and harmonic textures. We have wondered why it’s not performed more often. And lastly, we are performing our own arrangement of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition which really lets us pull out the stops! Audiences are always happily surprised how enjoyable it is to hear in our trio arrangement. This piece is one of our favorite ones to play and we had the pleasure of recording it along with the great masterpiece, Ravel’s Trio in A-minor.
Sandy: I note this is your second swing through Northern California this season and this time just a flying visit between Florida and Utah. Grueling huh?
Jon: This concert will be the second of a 6 concert tour beginning in Florida, then the Kohl, Salt Lake City, Tuscon and Corvallis, Oregon. Lots of packing up our bags and hitting the airports. I have always said that playing the concert is easy, it’s the traveling that’s hard! We love coming to California as often as we can. This will be our second visit to the area since last October where we performed in beautiful Carmel. The scenery is always inspiring.
Sandy: Can you talk a little about Trio Solisti’s many teaching endeavors?
Jon: One of the pleasures we have while performing is to visit various colleges and universities and hear young music students play for us in master classes. It’s very rewarding to offer advice and critique to them. We have been fortunate to have a small residency at Adelphi University in Long Island, New York where we have some demo/lectures for the music majors as well as hear them perform for us as well. It’s quite important to have a presence as professional performing musicians in an educational surrounding.
Sandy: Let’s talk about your extensive recording work and especially your latest release which is hot off the press. Can you tell us where you prefer to record, and who produces?
Jon: We are very proud of our new recording which was just released this week! It’s a disc of Dvorak’s Dumky and F-minor Piano trios. This will be our fifth CD since we’ve been together. Through the recording process, we have found that we learn so much through the process of vigorously preparing the performance and gaining a unique perspective of interpreting the music. We have always recorded in a wonderful hall at State University of New York Purchase where the acoustics are perfect for our sound. We have a wonderful producer, Adam Abeshouse ( A recipient of a Grammy) who knows how to bring out the best in us. We call him our fourth member of the group when we work with him!