Seraphim Trio

Seraphim Trio

Seraphim Trio is widely recognised as one of Australia’s most refined and experienced trios and is praised by critics for its ‘absolute sonic cohesion and uniform musical maturity’.  

In 2014, Anna Goldsworthy (piano) Helen Ayres (violin) and Timothy Nankervis (cello) celebrate 20 years together.  Read reviews, buy CDs, book tickets and view Seraphim's performance schedule on this website.

"...Seraphim Trio played my little piece superbly and I heard it with new ears... The Seraphim Trio had revealed my piece to me. The fast, scurrying passages had flashed brilliantly by; pauses had been longer, more pregnant, the dark sonorities richer-hued and mellower."
Andrew Ford, Inside Story, September 2012

Seraphim's repertoire includes:

ARENSKY
Piano Trio Op. 32 in D minor

BEETHOVEN

Opus 1 No. 1 in E-flat major
Opus 1 No. 2 in G major
Opus 1 No. 3 in C minor
Opus 11 Piano Trio No. 4 in B-flat major ("Gassenhauer") 
Opus 63 Piano Trio in E-flat major
Opus 70 No. 1 in D major ("Ghost")
Opus 70 No. 2 in E-flat major
Opus 97 in B-flat major ("Archduke") 

Triple Concerto in C major, Op.56
Scottish folksong settings for trio and voice, Op. 11

Trio for clarinet, cello and piano in B flat, Op. 11

BLOCH
Three Noctures

BRAHMS
Piano Trio Op. 8 in B
Piano Trio in C minor Op. 87
Piano Quartet in G minor Op. 25

CHOPIN
Piano Trio Op.8 in G minor

DEBUSSY
Piano Trio in G

DVORAK
Piano Trio 'Dumky' Op. 90 

Piano Trio in F minor Op. 65

Paul DEAN
'Converging Spheres' for clarinet and piano trio

HAYDN
Trio in G major Hob. XV:25
Trio in F# minor Hob. XV:26

CHARLES HORSLEY
Piano Trio Op. 13 in B minor

HUMMEL
Piano Trio Op. 83 in E

GRAEME KOEHNE
'The Ringtone Cycle' for trio and soprano

MENDELSSOHN
Piano Trio Op. 49 in D minor

Piano Trio Op. in 66 C minor

FANNY MENDELSSOHN-HENSEL
Piano Trio in Op. 11 in D minor 

MESSIAEN
"Quartet for the End of Time" for Piano, Violin, Cello and Clarinet

MOZART
Piano Trio K 502 in B flat
Piano Trio K 548 in C
Piano Quartet in G minor K 478

GEORGE PALMER
Piano Quartet 

RACHMANINOV
Trio Elegiaque No. 1 in G minor

RAVEL
Piano Trio in A minor

SCHUBERT
Piano Trio D 898 in B flat
Piano Trio Notturno D 897 in E flat
Piano Trio Sonatensatz
Quintet in A major D667 "Trout" for Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello and Double Bass

SCHUMANN
Fantasiestucke in A minor for Piano Trio, Op. 88
Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 63

CLARA SCHUMANN
Piano Trio Op. 17 in G minor

PETER SCULTHORPE

From Irkanda 3

SHOSTAKOVICH
Piano Trio No. 2 Op. 67 in E minor

SMETANA
Piano Trio in G minor Op. 15

TCHAIKOVSKY
Piano Trio in A minor Op. 50

DOUGLAS WEILAND
Piano Trio op. 22


Damian Barbeler

Anne Boyd
Calvin Bowman
Brenton Broadstock
Raymond Chapman-Smith
Joe Chindamo
Andrew Ford
Quentin Grant
Elena Kats-Chernin
Andrea Keller
Ian Munro
John Polglase
Roger Smalley
Julian Yu

Commissions

Seraphim Trio maintains a robust commissioning program, and has worked with a range of Australian composers.  Following are some of the works that Seraphim has commissioned in its 20 years together: 

Converging Spheres by Paul Dean

Paul Dean wrote: "Converging Spheres is the fourth piece in a series of works that I have written that is concerned with my humble 'coming to grips' with issues and events, both political and personal. Therein lies the basis for Converging Spheres and the state of my mind as I rummaged through the plethora of emotions that accompanied every new shock confronting me as I woke in the morning." 


The Ringtone Cycle by Graeme Koehne and Peter Goldsworthy

Seraphim Trio commissioned composer Graeme Koehne and librettist Peter Goldsworthy to collaborate on The Ringtone Cycle, telling the story of a love affair in this text-message age. 

Commissioned with the assistance of the Australia Council.


Variation on a Waltz by Schubert by seven of Australia's leading composers

Seraphim Trio commissioned seven of Australia's leading composers to each write a variation on a Waltz by Schubert. Each composer was asked to write a little about their intention in composing their variation. 

Calvin Bowman wrote: "This variation is a romantic interpretation of the Schubert waltz. It plays on the 'trauer' aspect of the music, and exploits the semitone figure heard at the beginning of the original. Primarily conceived as a cello solo, the violin appears at the conclusion of the variation." 

Raymond Chapman-Smith wrote: 

"Feelings
my friend
wrote Schubert
are stars that
guide us only
in brightest daylight." 

Joe Chindamo wrote: "Although it's impossible to separate the musical elements in a composition in such a manner that allows one to ascertain how and by what measure each contributes to the whole, I might - if held at gun point - single out the harmonic component as the one which moves me the most in a given work. Having said this, I don't just mean the underlying harmonies, but the very melodies and runs (flighty or otherwise) which delineate it.The aesthetic beauty of this particular composition of Schubert's does not rest in its harmonic fabric, and as such I have endeavoured to dress my variation in somewhat more exuberant colours. My secret template, now no longer a secret, was to imagine how a variation might turn out should Maurice Ravel, Samuel Barber, and Frederic Chopin (particularly the latter) assemble in a heavenly music room and collaborate on a tune." 

Andrew Ford wrote: "My variation is very still and pared back. I suppose I've stripped Schubert's waltz back to its skeleton and then draped it in a few scanty veils." 
 

Elena Kats-Chernin wrote: "Before starting the work on this variation, I kept playing the original Schubert Waltz over and over again, and marveled each time at how Schubert said so very much in so very few bars. I heard happiness, sadness, drama, conflict, charm, lightness and darkness. I tried to reflect upon those emotions in my variation, while retaining the melodic shape of it. Perhaps the one important feature that I did not follow through as much is the actual dance quality, my variation starts in an "undanceable" metre of 10/8 (played by unaccompanied violin), but later it does have some of the Waltz tendencies as well." 

Andrea Keller wrote: "I was struck most by the delicacy of this piece annd its simple yet rich melodicism. These qualities were the basis of my interpretation of this Schubert Waltz." 

Ian Munro wrote: "My variation began as a sort of precis of a number of completions of unfinished Schubert piano sonatas, something of an obsession of mine about fifteen years ago. Instead, it worked itself out as a more contemporary homage, tonal in a straightforward way but incorporating a number of modulations that Schubert would never have used. The 'Schottische', a dainty two-step often paired by Schubert with his longer waltz sequences, emerges from the remnants of the waltz and closes after a few tonal ambiguities." 
 


The Way it is by George Palmer

Seraphim Trio commissioned Australian composer George Palmer to write a piece for piano quartet. 

George Palmer wrote of his commission: "In this piano quartet I explore five views, or philosophies, of the human condition, four of them proclaiming "that's the way it is," and the fifth confessing "I don't know the way it is." Each of these views we probably all embrace at one time or another, sometimes simultaneously." 

Commissioned with the assistance of the Australia Council


Seraphim Canticles by Anne Boyd

Seraphim Trio commissioned Australian composer Anne Boyd to write a piece for piano trio. 
Anne Boyd wrote of her commission: "Much of my recent music has explored sacred themes connected to the mystery of God. The name of the Seraphim Trio itself proved an important stimulus in the creation of a new work for this particular ensemble. As a church chorister, I have long been familiar with the text found in Christian liturgy: "Seraphim and Cherubim continually do cry: 'Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty, Heaven and Earth are full of your Glory, Glory be to God on High!" While I was composing this music one of my dearest life-long friends, a pillar of support for my work as a composer, was battling cancer in the UK. Bill Colleran died just after the work's completion. It is in Bill's memory that this work is dedicated." 

Commissioned with the assistance of the Australia Council.


Arrangement of Janacek's The Kreutzer Sonata'by Julian Yu

Seraphim Trio commissioned Australian composer Julian Yu to arrange Janacek's Kreutzer for Piano Trio. 
Julian Yu wrote of his commission: "this is already a very serious work. It's not a work that one can have fun with when approaching it. I took the arrangement very seriously, and the only major change was the change to Adagio at the trio's conclusion." 

Commissioned with the assistance of Ars Musica Australis.