Alma Trio


Alma Trio

The Alma Trio was a classical piano trio established in 1942 at the "Alma Estate" of Yehudi Menuhin in Los Gatos, California.__TOC__

Original members

The original founding members of the Alma Trio were Roman Totenberg, violin; Gabor Rejto, cello; and Adolph Baller, piano. The members of the Trio had been encouraged by the famed artist, Yehudi Menuhin, to establish themselves as a professional piano trio. Adolph Baller had emigrated to the United States in 1938 with the sponsorship of Menuhin, following harrowing experiences at the hands of the Nazis in Austria and Germany. After arriving in the United States, Baller was a guest of Menuhin and became his regular collaborating pianist, as he had been earlier in Europe.

New violinists

In 1953 Totenberg left the Trio and was replaced by Maurice Wilk, who remained their violinist for ten years until his sudden death in Fall 1963. A review in the New York Times, December 1, 1954, had this to say:

:"Having acquired a new violinist in Maurice Wilk, the Alma Trio has taken a new lease on life. It deserves to be long and prosperous — that is, if the ensemble continues to play as beautifully as it played last night when it opened the cycle of three Beethoven concerts that it is giving at "Town Hall" . . . few chamber ensembles play the Bonn master with such refinement of spirit and such subtlety of tonal shading." [http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=FB0F13FF3C58157A93C3A91789D95F408585F9&scp=1&sq=alma%20trio&st=cse]

Violinist Andor Toth joined the Trio in the Spring of 1963. During the Fall of 1963, the Alma Trio made their first Russian tour. In a story related to this author, at the airport Rejto was informed of a new rule, that he would need a second ticket for his cello, and there were no remaining seats available. Faced with the impending cancellation of the tour, Rejto responded quickly, "But it is a bass balalaika." He was able to fly since that instrument was not listed by the airline

New pianist

This membership of the Alma Trio (Toth, Rejto, Baller) continued until Baller's retirement in 1971, when pianist William Corbett Jones joined the Trio until it disbanded in 1976. From 1982 to 1986 the Trio resumed performing with Andor Toth, Gabor Rejto and Adolph Baller for a few concerts mainly in the northern California bay area. The original cellist "Gabby" Rejto died in 1987, and the original pianist "Usiu" Baller died in 1994. Andor Toth lived until 2006 when he died of a stroke in Los Angeles, California at age 81.

References

New York Times Review

* [http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=FB0F13FF3C58157A93C3A91789D95F408585F9&scp=1&sq=alma%20trio&st=cse December 1, 1954, Wednesday, AMUSEMENTS, Page 39, 373 words]

External links

* [http://www.altenbergtrio.at/?site=archive_ensemble&lp=en Altenberg Trio Ensemble Database]
* [http://www.bu.edu/cfa/music/faculty/totenberg.shtml Roman Totenberg]
* [http://www.cellist.nl/database/showcellist.asp?id=311 Gabor Rejto]
* [http://news-service.stanford.edu/pr/94/940125Arc4484.html Adolph Baller]
* [http://www.stanford.edu/dept/news/news/2007/february7/toth-020707.html Andor Toth]
* [http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Bio/Corbett-Jones-William.htm William Corbett Jones]
* [http://news-service.stanford.edu/pr/97/971105baller.html Note in an announcement of a recital by Baller]

Past performances

* [http://content.cdlib.org/xtf/view?docId=kt109n99rq&doc.view=frames&chunk.id=d0e6130&toc.depth=1&toc.id=d0e5161&brand=oac Online Archive of California]
* [http://www.palosverdes.com/sbcms/early.htm South Bay Chamber Music Society - The Early Concerts]
* [http://www.dallaschambermusic.org/about/past-ensembles Dallas, Texas Chamber Music Organization, Past Concerts]
* [http://www.morrisonseries.org/pastseasons.html The Morrison Artist Series Past Seasons]
* [http://www.carmelmusic.org/pages/past_performances/performance_frame.html Carmel Music Society Past Performances]
* [http://www.ctconcerts.co.za/longlist.html Cape Town, South Africa Concert Series]
* [http://www.losalamosconcert.org/PastSeasons.htm Los Alamos, New Mexico Concert Association]
* [http://www.chambermusicfriends.org/seasons/5657-6566.php Friends of Chamber Music, Stockton, California]
* [http://www.bflochambermusic.org/assets/pdf/bcms_personnel.pdf Buffalo Chamber Music Society 1967 and 1970 (PDF file)]

Discography

The following Alma Trio recordings in LP format are cataloged by the [http://www.loc.gov/fedsearch/records.tkl?cclquery=alma+trio+&start=1&id=target-catalog.tkl&targets%5B%5D=catalog&targets%5B%5D=recommend&alltargets=targets Library of Congress] . They are piano trios by Beethoven, Brahms, and Schubert.
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/99572538 Trio in E-flat major, op. 1, no. 1] . Trio in B-flat, op. 11 Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | [1955?] | sound recording-musical | LC Control No.: 99572538] . Trio in B-flat, op. 11 Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | [1955?] | sound recording-musical | LC Control No.: 99572538
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/99567526 Trio in C minor (No. 3, op. 1)] ; Trio no. 11 (op. 121A) ten variations on "Ich bin der Schneider Kakadu." Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | [1955?] | sound recording-musical | LC Control No.: 99567526
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r62001425 Trio in D major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 70, no. 1 (Ghost)] . Trio in E-flat major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 70, no. 2. [Sound recording] Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 62001425
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r62001424 Trio in D major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 70, no. 1 (Ghost)] . Trio in E-flat major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 70, no. 2. [Sound recording] Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 62001424
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001238 Trio in E-flat major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 1, no. 1] . [Sound recording] Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001238
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001239 Trio in C major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 87] . [Sound recording] Brahms, Johannes, 1833-1897. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001239
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001237 Trio in C major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 87] . [Sound recording] Brahms, Johannes, 1833-1897. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001237
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001236 Trio in E-flat major for piano, violin, and cello, op. 1, no. 1] . [Sound recording] Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001236
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/2001564588 Trio in E flat major, op. 100] Schubert, Franz, 1797-1828. | [1948?] | sound recording-musical | LC Control No.: 2001564588
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r64001395 Trio in B-flat major, for piano, violin, and cello, op. 97] . [Sound recording] (Archduke) Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 64001395
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001037 Trio no. 2, in E-flat major, op. 100] . [Sound recording] Schubert, Franz, 1797-1828. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001037
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r61001036 Trio no. 2, in E-flat major, op. 100] . [Sound recording] Schubert, Franz, 1797-1828. | text | LC Control No.: r 61001036
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/r64001396 Trio in B-flat major, for piano, violin, and cello, op. 97] . [Sound recording] (Archduke) Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827. | text | LC Control No.: r 64001396
# [http://lccn.loc.gov/72765783 Trio in E-flat major, op. 100] . [Sound recording] Schubert, Franz, 1797-1828. | text | LC Control No.: 72765783


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