December 1, 2019


Dear friends, 


I am very excited and pleased to present our next concert.  On December 1st, Musica Tra Amici will present two chamber works written in concertante style from the opposite ends of the 19th century. 


First, we will present Franz Schubert’s Rondo in A major for Violin and Strings (often performed with string quartet) from 1816. Written when the composer was 19 years old, and close to the time he wrote his Fifth Symphony, it shows the clear influence of Mozart.  For me, this is a special chamber music work as it is the first piece I ever performed as a soloist with a professional orchestra – The St. Louis Symphony.


The Concert for Violin, Piano and String Quartet written in 1892 by Ernest Chausson casts the two solo instruments and quartet as equal forces in a large scale work. It was a tremendous success in its first performance arranged in Belgium by violinist Eugène Ysaÿe.  It shows the clear influence of his teacher, César Franck. The immediate success of this piece is no surprise - it is filled with harmonic opulence, beautiful melodies, and magical atmospheres.  After it’s premiere in Belgium, Chausson wrote in his diary, “Never have I had such a success! I can’t get over it. Everyone seems to love the Concert.” This was Chausson’s first critically acclaimed work. 


My long-time friend and Houston Symphony colleague, pianist Scott Holshouser will be joining me in this concert. The string quartet will feature Houston Symphony Principal Second Violinist  MuChen Hsieh as well as three Houston Symphony  musicians new to Musica Tra Amici: Violinist Anastasia Sukhopara, Violist Jarita Ng, and Cellist Louis-Marie Fardet. We look forward to presenting this marvelous music to you!


Please join us at the Art Gallery of the MATCH.


Eric Halen
Artistic Director,
Musica Tra Amici