Bessie Bartlett Chamer Music Festival: The Gold Coast Trio

The Scripps College Music Department will host the Bessie Bartlett Frankel Chamber Music Festival, featuring The Gold Coast Trio on Sunday, February 20, at 3:00 p.m. in Balch Auditorium on 10th and Columbia on the Scripps College campus. For additional program information please call the Scripps College Music Department at (909) 621-8280. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact the Joint Music Department of the Claremont Colleges at (909) 621-8280 or (909) 607-3267.

The Gold Coast Trio is composed of performers Hao Huang and Rachel Huang of the Scripps and CGU music departments and Susan Lamb Cook of the University of California, Davis. Originally founded as a resident chamber ensemble of the Classical Music Festival in Eisenstadt, Austria, the trio has been hailed for its richly expressive and emotionally powerful performances, both in the USA and abroad. The concert will feature piano trios by Haydn, Beethoven and Mendelssohn. Beethoven named his Piano Trio Op. 70, nr. 1 the “Ghost” Trio after some connection he felt between the spectral music of its slow movement and the ghost scenes in Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Hamlet; the virtuosity of last movement brilliantly exorcises any lingering unearthly spirits! Felix Mendelssohn’s Trio no. 2 in C minor, op. 66 is an unjustly neglected romantic masterpiece and a dramatic tour-de-force. The trio was also the last important chamber work of Mendelssohn’s career. The third movement Scherzo is especially dazzling, with a gossamer light and airy character, energized by a feeling of perpetual motion from beginning to end.

Winner of various prestigious international music awards including the Van Cliburn Piano Award at Interlochen, Dr. Huang has gained acclaim in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America. Dr. Huang performed as a featured soloist at the George Enescu International Music Festival and the Barcelona Cultural Olympiad. He has also appeared with the Timisoara “Banatul” Philharmonic, the Brevard Music Center Orchestra, the Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra, the New Haven Symphony Orchestra, and more. A graduate of Harvard University, the Juilliard School and the State University of New York at Stony Brook, he is professor of music and artist-in-residence at Scripps College and head of piano faculty at Claremont Graduate University.

Dr. Rachel Vetter Huang holds the rare distinction of being honored by both the National Endowment of the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. She has appeared as soloist with the Boston Pops, the Concord Symphony Orchestra and others. She has participated as an American representative in the Respighi Festival in Citta de Castello, Italy and on scholarships to the Aspen and Tanglewood Music Festivals. She has been featured on radio broadcasts from WQXR-FM in New York, WGBH-FM in Boston and on both South and North Carolina public television and radio networks. Dr. Huang holds degrees from Harvard University and the State University of New York Stony Brook. She formerly served as violin professor for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and is currently on the musci faculty of Scripps College and Claremont Graduate University.

Cellist Susan Lamb Cook has soloed with the Vienna Bach Soloists, the International Bartok Chamber Orchestra in Kassel, Germany, the Cairo Symphony in Egypt, and the Vancouver Symphony. Currently instructor of cello and chamber music at the University of California, Davis, Ms. Cook holds degrees from the University of Iowa, and a degree with honors in performance from the Academy of Music in Vienna. She has recorded works by Daniel Kingman for Innova Records and has released a CD of works by Rachmaninoff for Cello and Piano on the Agnelli label.